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Two of the four stages in application of scientific method in marketing research are: formulation hypothesis and testing hypothesis. This means that the hypothesis is an integral part of the scientific method. It becomes a key component in the marketing research process. It is not possible to call a formal marketing research project as scientific and complete unless it sets and tests hypothesis.


New Collegiate Dictionary defines “hypothesis” as “a tentative theory or supposition provisionally adopted to explain certain facts and guide the investigation of others. “Hypothesis is a tentative and declarative statement formulated to be tasted describing relationship between concepts. A good hypothesis is one which directly stems from the good definition and objectives of problem. A hypothesis is set during exploratory research and tested during conclusive research. The researcher should state the null hypothesis (the hypothesis to be tested) in such a way that its rejection leads to the acceptance of the desired statement-the alternative hypothesis.

A hypothesis is nothing more than a conjectural statement about the relationship between two more variables. A good hypothesis carries a clear implication for testing the stated relations between the variables. In effect a hypothesis is a statement about two or more variables that are measurable or potentially measurable. The hypothesis also specifies that how these variables are related. In early stages of research, we usually lack sufficient understanding of the problem to formulate a specific hypothesis. Further, there are several competing tentative explanations for the occurrence of marketing phenomenon. For example, sales are off because our price is too high; our dealers and representatives are not doing a job they should; our advertising is weak; our product quality has gone down; our distribution channels are not effective and so on.

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