Conducting Market Research as a Small Business

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Conducting Market Research as a Small Business

Market research is the bedrock of many successful businesses, and not just at launch. It’s a great idea to keep up to date with customers at every stage of business.

Are you looking to improve an existing product or service? Update your marketing material? Searching for new streams of revenue? Market research will provide insight on how to make these business decisions.

For high-risk projects, some may use a professional market research service. However, there are plenty of things you can do to keep market research and understanding customers at the front of your mind.

1. Listen to Customers

A great place to start is to listen to your customers. Try to listen to what they care about, what they talk about, what they struggle with, and which languages they’re using. Social media is brilliant for this, as you can join groups in your business area. Remember to check out sites like Quora and Reedit, too. These channels will help provide honest insights into your customers’ Iives and the questions they’re asking.

2. Talk to Customers

Talking to customers is probably the best way to gain insight and is often overlooked by small businesses. You could do this by scheduling regular 1:1 customer interviews, to ensure you are meeting customers’ needs. You could also find people in your customer base or target audience and ask to interview them for 30 minutes. Before doing so, identify what you want to find out and then tailor your questions accordingly.

3. Ask Great Questions

Whether you’re completing a survey or a 1:1 customer interview, your insights will only be as good as the questions asked. For a 1:1 Interview try to use open ended questions and leave plenty of room for the customer to share stories.

A common mistake is asking an audience whether they would buy a new product or service. People often tend to tell you what you want to hear.

Instead, it is best to look into present and past customer behaviours around your focus area.

4. Remember Desk Research

You can complete a lot of customer research online. From micro-trends in self-employment accounting to shifts in customer online spending habits, chances are there is a relevant report for you.

Many large companies publish quarterly and yearly trend reports across a wide variety of areas and you can access them for free.

5. Go Pro

If you need some help conducting market research, then don’t forget you can always reach out for professional help. Look through your own network for research experts and ask for recommendations.

So, there you have it! We hope our five tips prove useful, when you conduct market research. Hopefully, you will gain some useful insights!

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