Standard Article

Purchase, Scanner, and Media Panels

Part 2. Marketing Research

  1. Frank J. Mulhern

Published Online: 15 DEC 2010

DOI: 10.1002/9781444316568.wiem02038

Wiley International Encyclopedia of Marketing

Wiley International Encyclopedia of Marketing

How to Cite

Mulhern, F. J. 2010. Purchase, Scanner, and Media Panels. Wiley International Encyclopedia of Marketing. 2.

Author Information

  1. Northwestern University, Evanston, IL, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 DEC 2010


Purchase, scanner, and media panels are collections of individuals or households who agree to provide detailed information on their behavior over a period of time. Participants in these panels provide marketers with detailed information on purchase behavior or media use. Panels are designed to represent the demographic and ethnic population of the nation, and range in size from a few thousand to tens of thousands of participants. In purchase panels, participants record information about what they buy. Typically, participants, upon returning from a shopping trip, enter their purchase information into either a diary or an online data collection system. Scanner panels are a special type of purchase panels, where participants are enrolled in a program that automatically captures data on their purchases at retail stores. Scanner panels overcome the limitation of requiring participants to input information manually. Information is necessary on media consumption behavior for the advertisers to successfully place ads where they will be seen by target audiences. That information comes from media panels that consist of households who agree to have their media use tracked by electronic devices.


  • purchase panels;
  • scanner panels;
  • media panels;
  • secondary data;
  • advertising;
  • sales promotion