Demerits of Survey Methods:
1. The first drawback of survey method is the money needed for conducting the surveys. In most cases the researcher has to recruit a large number of field workers make arrangement for their training and supervision and arrange for the printing of schedules and the tabulation of collected data. All this requires a considerable amount of money which very few people can afford.
2. Survey is prolonged and time consuming process. A large and elaborate survey may take years and it is a real task for anyone to maintain his zeal during this period. As a result most of the surveys are conducted in a hurry and greater reliance is placed upon whatever information can be had quickly and conveniently. The reliability and validity of such information is not always beyond question.
3. Survey techniques leaves little scope for manoeuvring. The whole scheme is perfectly rigid and must be decided before hand. Any change in the research design or any one of the major variables may mean conducting the survey afresh. A survey unless well planned in advance may very well lead to complication later on and howsoever perfect the pre planning it is impossible to visualize all the techniques flaws that may be revealed only through experience.
4. The reliability and validity of the data collected through survey is not always doubt. The reliability of data to a great extent is dependent upon the honesty and efficiency of the field workers the cooperation of the respondents the adequacy and suitability of schedule etc. All these requirements are very seldom fully met and the collected data may contain much invalid and inaccurate information.
5. The study through survey method at times becomes too much aggregative and therefore too much general. A survey must be fairly large to give valid results and the very extensiveness of the survey precludes the intensive study of individuals and even small group within the large population.
6. Survey method is not suitable for problems that require the study in the historical retrospect ordinarily survey reporting refers to specific point in time or to a relatively short time period studies of origins and long term development require research methods of more longitudinal character.
7. Most of the survey are conducted on sample basis and the information collected is subject to sampling error. Beside this the sample itself may not be representative and then whatever information is collected may become unpreventative of the group to which it is intended to be applied.
8. Survey method lays to much emphasis upon problem of immediate importance. It does not permit a more comprehensive study of the society. The study of the fundamental points of society in its wider perspective over time is not possible through this methods. This is why most of the surveys deal with problems of immediate importance only.