Market research- Definition and the top research methods

Do you want to know why your new product is not getting much attention from the customers? Are you planning to make new launches but not sure of what the customers are looking for? What is your business position? What are the current trends in the market? To get the answers, you need to interact with your customers. But how will you do that? From where can you get the information about your customers? This is where market research plays an integral role. This should be a constant part of your business strategy. There are various market research methods that will help you to get all the answers to the above questions. Market research is a technique through which you get to know the practicability of a product or service from your customers through research methods. The research work can be either carried out by the companies themselves or they may hire a professional market research agency to do the job. There are various methods that can be used by businesses – surveys, personal interviews, focus groups, and observation methods. The data collected from this market research helps in modifying advertisement activities to ensure that they are as per the desires of the customers.

There are mainly three broad objectives of market research:

  • Social
  • Administrative
  • Economical

Market research is important for various reasons which have been listed down below.

  • Provides valuable information
  • Determines what the customer wants
  • Allows forecasting of sales and production
  • Offers a competitive advantage

Types of market research methods:

There are various market research methods that can be used depending on your business type.

Mainly, there are two kinds of research methods- Primary research method and secondary research method.

Primary research method

This includes a combination of quantitative and qualitative methods. There are two kinds of information that you get through this method- specific and exploratory. In the primary research process, the data is usually collected by companies or through third-party agencies. The feedback here is obtained from the end customers. The qualitative aspect of market research methods includes- Personal Interviews, focus groups, and ethnographic research. These methods are used to gather statistical information. Earlier, this process was conducted using pen and paper. However, with the use of modern technologies, things have become quite easier. Starting from designing the survey to getting instant feedback, technologies have revamped the entire process.

Secondary market research

In other words, the information is not obtained directly from the end-user. Rather, the information is collected from secondary sources like social media, government agencies, chambers of commerce, etc. Some of the examples of secondary sources include- public sources, commercial sources, and educational institutions. 

Steps on conducting market research:

In order to get the right information, it’s important to perform the research work very carefully. Below discussed are some of the important steps that one needs to follow for conducting market research.

  • Defining the problem in a precise manner
  • Defining the sample through various sampling techniques.
  • Carrying out data collection
  • Analyzing the results
  • Preparing the research report
  • Making the decisions accordingly

By choosing the right market research methods and following the right steps, it becomes easier for the businesses to make well-informed decisions, help in understanding the market size, know about customer preferences and their perceptions about a brand, getting real time information, and helps in ascertaining the right methods of communicating with the customers.




Paul Black: Paul, a former Wall Street trader, provides expert analysis on trading strategies, portfolio management, and financial markets.

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