Online communities have shown that they offer more than traditional qualitative research. Traditionally, one-to-one interviews, focus groups or group discussions have formed the basis of qualitative research. An online community opens up the possibility of working with your participants in a variety of ways rather than just one. Further, you can make use of social media tools such as photo and video sharing.
‘One loud voice’ is less likely to dominate group discussions. The community moderator is able to choose the right way to produce the most insightful feedback.
You can spend more time analysing the data collected and gaining insights. There is no need for transcriptions as data is instantly downloadable. If you wish, you can then use text analysis methods and tools.