Smart business owners usually inoculate market research into their overall business strategy. This is because it is essential both for business development and expansion. Whether it is looking to start a brand, or begin the manufacture of a new product or service, or penetrate a new and emerging market, companies first need to perform comprehensive market research to guide their footsteps and inform their decisions.
No serious brand ever jumpstarts a new initiative or dives into an emerging market simply because their gut feeling told them to. Such moves are considered wasteful and have almost always led towards failure and regret, with uninformed product manufacturing failing at a rate of 95%. The proper thing to do is collect substantial data about consumer behaviour and needs, and other market factors. This is then used to create valuable insights that help to fashion the next move.
Today, we will find out what this market research is, its importance and 5 different ways to conduct a successful one.
What Is Market Research?
Market research can be defined as an evaluation or investigative process of gathering cogent information about the customers and market to determine the viability of a new product and its feasibility in the market.
The process entails collecting relevant information about the buyer and the behaviors, the competitors and their best-performing products, the market, and all current trends. Put together, the several steps that make up a comprehensive market research help to bridge the gap between what a brand is making and the target market.
When done correctly, market research can inform you of the market’s exact needs and what solutions your product should seek to provide. It is what helps manufacturers and service providers develop initiatives that are readily welcomed in the market.
Importance of Market Research
Some of the most common importance of conducting market research includes the following:
It Facilitates Better Decision-Making
The data collected during market research are very accurate, and they help brands make better decisions that can have a long-term effect on the growth of their business.
It Provides In-depth Knowledge About The Market
The market doesn’t respond to sentiments, and making decisions based on gut feelings is tantamount to complete failure. Market research is a process that allows brands to gather comprehensive information and understand their market enough to produce goods and services that hit.
It Helps To Identify New Business Opportunities
Sometimes, brands conduct market research for one reason and end up with more ideas. The fact that the steps involve collecting information about what is happening with the buyers and in the market can reveal opportunities that would otherwise be unknown.
It Provides A Competitive Edge
No brand can compete fairly in today’s market without fully grasping what is happening in the market. Conducting market research can provide businesses with just what they need to compete even in a global market.
It Increases Sales and Revenue
Market research helps you know exactly what the market wants. And once the market gets what it wants, sales and revenue usually start to go through the roof. And as research has shown, products that are centred on the customers’ wants often tend to be 60% more profitable.
5 Main Ways of Conducting Market Research
Below are 5 practical ways that you can easily use to perform market research:
1. Web Scraping
Web scraping is one of the most effective ways to conduct market research since it is essentially gathering useful market data from multiple sources. Web scraping tools such as proxies and scraping bots can gather comments, reviews, discussions, and even leads from different sources. Using a proxy here is beneficial because it helps you scale past any hurdle such as geo-restrictions. For instance, you could use a proxy Australia to bypass restrictions and gather the necessary information from Australia.
2. Surveys and Questionnaires
Administering surveys and questionnaires are useful while you are trying to reach a predetermined end. They can be administered to participants who are also likely customers either online or offline in paper forms.
3. Phone Research
This method is also very effective and works by calling the participants on the phone and asking them a list of questions. The responses are usually compiled and used to decide what should happen next.
4. Focus Groups
Focus groups consist of a smaller number of buyers who are assembled in different rooms and asked a series of questions. The results often properly paint a vivid picture of the customer’s thoughts.
5. Field Trials
This is a method of market research that involves making a small and controlled business move. You can even call it “testing the waters”, but on a much smaller scale. Successes are recorded as a win, and failures are used to try something different.
Market research is important because it can lead any brand from the bottom to completely dominating a particular market.
A brand can do it to minimize risks or maximize profit or both, and it can be done using one or all the above methods depending on the size of the brand.