In today's business world, the only constant thing is change. To stay ahead of the competition, businesses must constantly adapt to the ever-changing needs of their customers. One of the best ways to stay on top of these changes is to conduct market research regularly.
Market research helps businesses understand their customers better and identify any changes in customer needs or wants. By constantly keeping tabs on the market, businesses can adapt their products and services to better meet the needs of their target market. This is essential for survival in today's ever-changing business landscape.
What is Market Research?
Market research is the process of gathering information about customers, competitors, and the market itself. Market research can be used to understand customer needs and desires, as well as to determine what products or services are most likely to appeal to them. It can also be used to assess the competitiveness of a market and to identify opportunities and threats. Therefore, market research is essential for businesses of all sizes.
Benefits of Conducting Market Research
Conducting Market research and using the customer data can help your company address common business challenges, such as:
- Finding new revenue streams
- Understanding how their customers’ needs have changed
- Adjusting their current products, services and business models to match the current environment
- Refining their product portfolio to maximise revenue and margin
- Determining the best way to communicate in the new world
Challenges of understanding your target market
The market research process is challenging. Businesses are having to do their own market research and make decisions regarding this primary research in a matter of weeks if not days. These are complex decisions that would usually take months—however, the luxury of time has now been taken away. If you cannot meet the needs of your customers, they will not have the patience to stay. In turn, your customer lifetime value will be reduced because the digital revolution has made it easier to seek out another brand selling a similar product or service.
Making the wrong decision under pressure creates real risk. Taking the decision-making approach we would usually take, isn’t likely to work. The data you have been collecting may no longer be relevant or useful to where you stand today. Operating on old customer research is not beneficial because your customer's needs will have changed. Flexibility and adaptability are key. If you do not constantly undergo customer data collection, you will be left behind the pack.
How to Conduct Market Research?
It does not matter if you are a large institution or a small business. There are different ways to conduct market research. The method you choose will depend on your budget, the type of information you need and the time frame you have to complete the research.
Some common market research methods include:
Qualitative research is an important tool that businesses can use to stay ahead of the competition. This type of research is used to gather data that can be interpreted in several ways, such as customer attitudes, behaviours, and emotions. This type of data is often used to help businesses make decisions about product development, marketing strategies, and customer service.
Quantitative research is another type of market research that can be used to gather numerical data about market trends. Quantitative research can be conducted through surveys, polls, or experiments.
Secondary market research is a type of market research that businesses can use to gather data about their customers. Secondary market research can be conducted through online sources, such as customer reviews, blog posts, or social media posts.
Primary market research is a type of market research that businesses can use to gather data about their customers. Primary market research can be conducted through surveys, interviews, or focus groups.
No matter what method you choose, market research is an essential tool.
What Type Of Market Research Do Successful Businesses Use?
Both qualitative and quantitative market research have their own set of benefits and drawbacks. There is no right way to conduct market research. It's important to choose the right method for your specific needs.
That being said, one of the common mistakes businesses make is ignoring qualitative data and only focusing on quantitative data for existing and potential customers.
Qualitative Data is Valuable
Though quantitative data may give more in the way of market trends, qualitative research is a valuable way to collect customer data because it offers more specific insights into the needs of your target customers.
- It can help you understand customer attitudes, behaviours, and emotions
- Qualitative data is often more accurate than quantitative data
- It can help you understand how customers feel about your product or service.
These insights can then be plotted on a customer journey map. A customer journey map is an important customer experience tool used to help businesses make decisions about product development, marketing strategies, and customer service.
Why Do Market Research?
Conducting market research can be a daunting task, but it's essential for survival in today's ever-changing business landscape.
Without the right information, organisations may be tempted to rely on gut feel and intuition. It's not a risk worth taking—especially when getting it right the first time is paramount.
Here is our advice: Understanding the real customer problem you are solving hasn’t changed. At this time, getting the basics right for your customers is more important than ever. Good decisions require good input. There is no substitute for deeply understanding the combination of your customers’ needs, your staff’s needs and the new macro-environment we are now operating in.
As the pioneers of Service Design and Growth-Driven Innovation in Australia, we are uniquely qualified to uncover the insights you need to equip your organisation with a foolproof plan to not only get through to the other side but be well-positioned to stem the churn or even grow in the current environment.