Qualitative research "provides an initial description of a phenomenon" and generally is not as easily evaluated through statistical analysis. Qualitative research examines phenomenological questions, seeking to generate generalized understandings of situations.
Qualitative research is used when researchers gather a focus group of respondents and ask questions such as 'Why did you choose the product you purchased?' 'How did you gather information before making your decision?' 'What specific characteristics did you find appealing about the product you chose?'
Qualitative research may also be used in case studies, for example evaluating the reactions of groups of individuals to different seating arrangements in a restaurant. Customers might be asked 'Do you prefer to sit close to a window or in the center of the room?' 'Are you more likely to sit in a booth, at a table, or at the counter?' 'How important is being close to the restroom to your choice of seating location?'