Coherent and valuable market research follows a systemized approach. Market research must be planned beforehand to ensure consistency in the data. Market research without a coherent plan runs the risk of shifting midway through the process, or even having to start over. Preparing the market research plan breaks down into two distinct steps: identifying and formulating the problem, and determining the research design. Exploratory market research is akin to basic research in science. Descriptive research is much more detailed and generates more granular data for the organization. Causal research is the most specific type of research, and is usually done if sufficient data has already been collected. The data collection phase splits into distinct steps. The sampling plan is the detailed framework of who will be contacted and what the expected sample size is. Once the research question has been designed, and the methodology decided on, it is time to design the research tool.