Using Cross-Tabs

This activity is designed to highlight the value of using cross-tabs to help analyze market research data.

In this exercise, you will start with the top-level results and then ‘drill down’ in the data through the use of cross-tabs. Hopefully you will find that, as you drill down, that more valuable information is uncovered.

Start by reviewing the hypothetical market research results in the table below. You will note that the three boxes shown represent different depths of analysis (from no cross-tabs, then cross-tabbed by gender, and then by gender and age group).



  1. Look at the first box only; what do the responses indicate?
  2. Now look at the second box only; what does the data suggest now?
  3. Finally, review the third box only; what information can now be obtained?
  4. In what ways does the information obtained vary as the cross-tabs are added?
  5. Which box above, do you think provides the most valuable information? Why?
  6. What are the advantages and limitations of using cross-tabs to analyze market research data?