What Is a Desk Research Report?

Desk research is a technique that makes use of data that is already in the public domain. It comprises information from research papers and other similar publications. Desk research is usually less expensive than original research. Organizations or enterprises that do primary research obtain data firsthand. Databases, news stories, statistics, studies, data sets, and Market Intelligence are examples of desk research.

Desk research is used by businesses to evaluate low-cost, publicly verifiable, and fast knowledge. Desk research can aid in the clarification and explanation of patterns. On a wider scale, it also aids in aligning the emphasis of primary research. Secondary analysis may be divided into two categories. These are secondary data from both inside and outside the company. The first kind includes data obtained within the researcher’s company. The second kind is compiled by researchers outside of their respective organizations.

Types of Desk Research Report

According to KPU Pressbooks, Internal data and external data are the two most frequent types of secondary data. Internal data is information that an organization has saved or structured internally. External data is information that has been arranged or gathered by someone else. Check out the available desk research report samples that you can use for reference in identifying the type of data that is suited for the desk research you are writing. Knowing the types also helps with you differentiating or choosing your desk research topics.

Internal Secondary Sources: Databases incorporating reports from persons or past research are examples of internal secondary sources. This is an often-overlooked resource, surprising that its much important knowledge sits on a company’s shelf collecting dust. Others may have performed their own study or purchased secondary information that is relevant to the work at hand. Even if it was done internally, this earlier study would still be deemed secondary because it was done for a different reason.External Secondary Sources: Secondary research can provide a wide range of facts. Government sources, commercial sources, and statistics are all good secondary source databases. This information was gathered by others, yet it might be beneficial when undertaking research into a new area of study. It also implies that a non-profit organization will have less labor because they will not have to produce their own data and can instead rely on the data of others.

Importance of Desk Research Report

Before going on fieldwork, creating a prototype, doing a usability test, or starting any project that you want to be user-centered, it’s a good idea to look at what others have done in the past that is related to the product’s domain. Although it’s doubtful that anybody has done the precise study you’re planning, someone has almost definitely attempted to answer questions connected to it. Reviewing this research is the quickest and most cost-effective approach to gain a better understanding of the topic. For at least three reasons, conducting desk research is an essential initial step.

You won’t know when you have discovered anything new if you don’t know what is gone before.When you meet with users and stakeholders face to face, you will sound more believable. If you don’t do your homework, you will end up asking stupid or irrelevant questions, and your participants may end up cutting your sessions short.Failure to do preliminary research is a waste of your participants’ time. You might only receive an hour with one of your system’s users. Do you really want to spend half of your time learning about domain concerns that you might have learned about somewhere else?

How to Write a Desk Research Report

After clarifying what a desk research report is and the types or methods of data collection defined, it is finally time to proceed to know how to write a desk research report format. Keep in mind that you don’t have to worry about starting from scratch because we have provided you with templates that you can use. All you have to do is follow the steps in filling them out.

Step 1: Identify the objectives of your research.

If you have a specific goal in mind for your research, it will be much easier to conduct desk research. If you’re not sure what your research’s goal is, make a list of all the questions you wish to investigate. The goal of your study should be to obtain answers to all of these questions. Follow the logic of progressing from broad research to a specific research topic. Finally, you should have a general concept of how much data you want to gather so you know when to go on to the next stage.

Step 2: Come up with a research plan.

This stage may go against your preconceived notions about desk research. The majority of individuals assume that desk research is done without a strategy. But believe me when I say that establishing a research strategy will make your study much easier. Choose a research technique and a tool for collecting and analyzing your study data. Identifying research sources is part of this process. Reduce the number of information sources you use to those that will give the most relevant facts and information for your study. Be resourceful and use all of the tools at your disposal to get the information you need in the most efficient way possible. However, in other situations, laborious research-based mostly on web searches will be required.

Step 3. Collect existing data.

Check for any prior data that is closely relevant to the issue once the data collecting sources have been narrowed down. Data for research may be found in a variety of places, including newspapers, public libraries, government and non-government organizations, and so on. You are on the correct road as long as your study follows your goal and you discover yourself in the material gathered.

Step 4. Analyze data.

Analyze the information gathered and determine if all of the questions have been addressed. If there is a need to go deeper into practical insights, repeat the procedure. Once the data has been gathered, combine it and compare it to see if there is any duplication before putting it together in a useable format. Make sure to gather information from reliable sources. Incorrect data can seriously stymie study. Once you’re certain that you have gathered enough data to make your strategic decisions easier, there are a few more tests to do. Make sure you comprehend the data you have gathered. It’s only interesting if you know what you’re talking about. If, despite your efforts, some things remain a mystery to you and are preventing you from moving further, see an expert. Prepare your request to be as succinct and detailed as possible, since specialists do not always have a lot of time, especially for free guidance, and will appreciate the opportunity to express themselves on certain issues.

Advantages of Desk Research Report

Desk research is one of the most important kinds of market research that many businesses do to understand more about their investments. The following are some of the advantages of desk research.

Inexpensive: The first advantage of performing desk research is that it is inexpensive. This sort of study necessitates the use of a desktop computer and an internet connection. If you are new to the company and want to start from the ground up, it’s understandable that you don’t have a lot of money to spend on Primary Research. As a result, secondary research is the greatest way to learn about the market sector you want to penetrate and the demand for the product.Making well-informed judgments: Every company’s success is dependent on its marketing efforts. A business invests a significant amount of money in marketing its goods. When a manager has a greater understanding of the area, they may make better judgments. Managers may use desk research to better understand consumer expectations and requirements. As a result, they can devise efficient marketing strategies for their goods and services.Helpful in the search for new opportunities: A manager might learn about the market’s business prospects by doing desk research. They are able to assess the Market competition and position their goods in such a way that they may grow market share.Conducting business requires less time: Secondary research can be completed in a fraction of the time it takes to do primary research. The information may be gathered in a short amount of time using technology and public sources.Useful in narrowing the study: Managers frequently confront the challenge of having only one focused study topic. Conducting primary research will be a waste of time and money in this situation. Desk review over-collected Data is handy in identifying which is more suitable for the study and which is not. Since the internet has various available information, desk research enables you to know which is more vital and which isn’t.

Desk Research Report Methods

Secondary research saves on cost but proves to be effective, which is one of the reasons why it is so popular among corporations and organizations. Not every Company can afford to spend large quantities of money on research and data collection. Because data may be accessed while sitting at a desk, secondary research is sometimes known as “desk research.” The following are some instances and methods of secondary research that are commonly used.

Data from the internet: Using the internet to acquire secondary data is one of the most common methods. Data is easily accessible over the internet and may be downloaded with a single click. This data is essentially free, or you may have to pay a little fee to get data that already exists. Businesses and organizations can utilize websites to find information to meet their research needs. Organizations, on the other hand, should only acquire information from legitimate and trustworthy websites.
Government and non-government agencies: Some government and non-government entities can provide data for secondary research.  There is a fee associated with downloading or using data from these organizations. The information acquired from these organizations is accurate and reliable.
Public libraries: Another ideal place to look for data for this study is in a public library. Public libraries hold copies of major studies done in the past. They serve as a repository for essential data and papers from which data may be retrieved. Library collections often include a significant number of government publications containing market information, as well as a large number of company directories and Newsletters.Data from educational institutions: The value of gathering data from educational institutions for secondary research is sometimes ignored. Colleges and universities, on the other hand, do more research than any other corporate sector. Universities gather information primarily for primary research. Businesses or groups, on the other hand, can contact educational institutions and seek data.Commercial information sources: Secondary data can be found in local newspapers, Journals, magazines, radio, and television stations. Economic trends, political agendas, market research, demographic segmentation, and other issues are all covered by these commercial information sources. Businesses may use these sources to not only find potential consumers but also to learn about ways to advertise their products or services because they have a larger reach.


Why is it called desk research?

Not every company can afford to spend a large quantity of money on research and data collection. Because data may be accessed while sitting at a desk, secondary research is sometimes known as “desk research.” Data collection is not the traditional method of collecting because through desk research, you are able to gather information from other sources rather than sending out forms or surveys or interviewing primary sources. Be sure to check out our available desk research report example to note the differences from other types of research.

What are the benefits of secondary research?

Managers are able to make better-informed judgments as a result of it. Secondary research aids managers in better understanding customer demands and identifying new possibilities. Allowing them to get a better understanding of the facts they have gathered. It enables Businesses to save money. Researchers do not have to incur the costs of planning and executing research. It also saves time for businesses. Most importantly, they may give context. It is less expensive and quicker. Customers may also use it to create a foundation for their major studies.

What are the drawbacks of desk research?

While desk research is a valuable technique, it does have limits. For example, desk research is restricted to what is accessible and so may only offer partial answers, either in terms of precision or timeliness of the information. Industry and geography may have a significant impact on the availability and quality of information. Information may be difficult to get by and frequently takes a significant amount of effort before useful data is discovered. Because this is public knowledge, we must be conscious of any potential prejudice. In many situations, a hybrid strategy that combines desk research with a small number of interviews with industry experts works exceptionally effectively. This is a cost-effective way to make use of the advantages of desk research while also providing specialized insights.

A report on desk research is important because you are analyzing the data you have gathered as well as writing out a conclusion for the said research without the hassle of the steps that need to be completed with primary research. But all in all, the purpose of both types is still vital in any marketing venture. What are you waiting for, start your desk research report with ease through the use of our templates available!