written by
5000fish Team

What’s the Difference Between Quantitative and Qualitative Data?

BI Terminology 4 min read
DashboardFox - Self-Service Data Reports

When it comes to how your business navigates its data collection, it’s important to get the differences in data types.

It’s important to realize that both, in their own ways, are excellent ways to find out information about how your business is performing, how your services are being received, or how customers feel about it.

So when it comes to qualitative vs quantitative data, what’s the difference and how do you get hold of it? And what’s the best way to use each data type to your advantage? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.

What is Quantitative Data?

Quantitative data is the numbers-heavy game. This is how you use mathematical analyses and data to find out information about your business, or the market that you’re operating in.

Useful quantitative data will help you answer questions to do with the interest in your business, potential new offerings, and the direction that you need to be heading in. This kind of data is usually based on having a large sample size so that you can create effective statistics.

Quantitative Data Questions

In order to get useful data, you’ll find that quantitative data questions are asked in terms of “how many?”, “how regularly?”, “when?”, and “where?

This is why a larger sample is a more effective way of getting handy statistics. In scientific research projects, you want to be asking questions face-to-face, through online surveys, or postal surveys to existing, or prospective customer groups.

In business, data can be generated via e-commerce transactions, customer service inquiries, sales, marketing, and many other operational sources and stored within your business databases.

Quantitative data is also useful for testing user groups, to see what it is that your customers or potential customers are more interested in engaging with.

Questions that quantitative data can help you answer:

  • How many people are interested in your product or service?
  • How long do visits on your website usually last?
  • Which social media posts are people most likely to interact with?
  • What are the social demographics of your current audience?
  • How does your email campaign open rate compare to previous ones?

As quantitative data is based on numbers you can create reliable statistics to help you decide where to go next. So for example, you can see what is working and what isn’t.

  • 67% of people opened the most recent campaign email, compared to an average of 42%
  • Social followers have reached 10,000 on Instagram
  • People typically spend 3 minutes on your website but bounce from a particular page

What is Qualitative Data?

Qualitative data is more interested in people’s feelings and opinions. It’s a great way to find out what it is that people like about what you do, or why it is that they’re interested in you vs. your competitors.

Qualitative data collection comes from smaller groups, where you can ask people anecdotally about problems they might have, what’s important to them as consumers, and their general beliefs about your company.

Qualitative Data Questions

Qualitative data is about asking your customers longer questions that focus on “how?”, “what?” and “why?” It’s important to invite people to give you the kind of feedback where they feel comfortable letting you know what works for them, and what doesn’t.

This data is a good way to get a feel about how your customers interact with you and can give you indicators into how they might be interested in you expanding or growing your company.

Questions that quantitative data can help you answer:

  • What do you like about the new website design?
  • How does this email campaign make you feel?
  • Why do you like this product? Why don’t you like it?

Only you can decide which data works more appropriately for your specific needs, and which works with the particular software or analysis tools that you’re currently using.

Wielded correctly, with both you can get an accurate and important overview of your business performance, as well as future directions you should go in.

How Can DashboardFox Help?

DashboardFox provides a self-service business intelligence tool to allow you to quickly, affordably, and securely share and communicate your business data.

For any project with either qualitative or quantitative data, there are a couple of use cases where DashboardFox can help.

Data Extraction

Once you have your data populated in a database, DashboardFox provides a codeless ad-hoc report builder that allows anyone to quickly select which fields from the database they need and what filters and/or formulas to apply to the data.

Without needing to know about the database tables or SQL syntax, a normal business user can generate a dataset and quickly export it for further analysis.

This can be a critical and time-saving function for both internal and external users (such as customers or partners).

Data Presentation

They don’t say a “picture is worth a thousand words” for nothing. Data is better when visualized. DashboardFox specializes in the ability to convert your raw data into visualizations, interactive dashboards, and reports where users can see the big picture and drill down into the details.

Plus you can also schedule data reports to be delivered via email for those who don’t like logging in to see their latest data.

Data Security

There are people who need to have access to your valuable data, but they also need to only see the scope they are allowed.

DashboardFox not only makes it easy for users to access data but also easy for you to apply rules that give them only what they need to see.

Contact Us

Let’s talk about your data and how DashboardFox can help.

Even if you don’t have the data in a database, we have the expertise to make recommendations and even help you convert data from Microsoft Excel spreadsheets into a database format. Learn more how this powerful change from spreadsheets to a database can really unlock your data.

Contact us, let’s talk.

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