Internet-based focus groups: New approaches to an ‘old’ research method
Focus group (FG) discussions are a popular qualitative research method used in health care and health service research. More recently, internet-based FGs have grown in popularity due to the growth of: (a) the internet, both in terms of technical capacity and number of users; and (b) the improved quality of communication software (e.g. Skype). This paper highlights some of the strengths and weaknesses of conducting FGs online. Building on our experience of conducting traditional and internet-based FGs, we offer some practical advice to potential users.