Most businesses in the UK will use market research at some point, and maybe use a market research agency to handle an important new project.
There are hundreds of market research companies in the UK that may be suitable. We do advise however to work with a market research agency that has experience of working in your industry sector.
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Market research is about collecting valuable data and important insights to help you understand your target audience better. Only by carrying out market research will you understand your consumer’s needs so that you can market your product in the best way possible and gain an edge over competitors.
The two major types of market research are quantitative and qualitative.
Quantitative: This type of market research collects key information about your consumers such as what they think and how they feel in a form that offers statistical analysis. A sample size that is representative of the entire population being research is important for validity and reliability. Once data is collected, you’ll be able to look at your robust data and identify general attitudes along with market trends.
Qualitative: This type of market research also provides key information about your consumers but is in a more detailed and specific form where you’ll learn more about the reasons behind a consumer’s feelings or perceptions. Interviews with individuals and focus groups are the most popular ways to gather qualitative research and while you won’t have statistical data, you will understand why your consumers think, behave or feel the way that they do.
There’s no rule to say that you can’t carry out both and they are often yield better results when used in conjunction. For example, a quantitative survey may highlight consumer satisfaction and if you follow in with a qualitative method, you’ll get to know more about why people scored the way they did.
The methodology you choose also depends on the answers you’re seeking.
Do you want to know how people think and what governs their choice or do you want to know what proportion of your target audience thinks a certain way?
We have a large number of market research agencies in our extensive database who are experts at determining the type of research to carry out, what questions need to be asked, how to analyse data and report on findings.
The market research companies that we represent can offer a range services such as:
Market analysis is an in-depth look into your industry. Findings are derived from numerous factors of your specific sector such as the market size, its growth rate and profitability, upcoming advances and typical costs associated with distribution, equipment, work force etc.
An assessment carried out that looks into current and potential competitors establishing their strengths, weaknesses, strategies and market share. This type of research can identify opportunities that your business can tap into and highlight the obstacles that your business needs to overcome.
Focus groups and interviews:
This is a type of qualitative research that can determine a consumer’s reaction or attitudes towards your product or service. It can be about anything from the packaging of a product to the usability of the product itself. Questions are asked to determine opinions or perceptions and are recorded or transcribed in order to evaluate later.
This method is often used to provide quantitative results and goes beyond just establishing “customer satisfaction.” You’ll get to establish the habits and preferences of your target population and adjust your marketing strategy accordingly.
Market research is very time-consuming and requires patience. You’ll not only need to plan the methodology of your market research but you need to implement, record and monitor it. If anything is going wrong, it’s important that you’re there to adjust your strategy. Agencies not only cover all this for you but they also know how to analyse and evaluate findings as well as presenting them to you in an easily-digestible form.
When you’re dealing with your key demographic, you need to be careful how you conduct your research to ensure you’re not collecting sensitive data or offending anyone. Agencies are experts at framing questions well, ensuring there is no breach of confidentiality and adhering to the data protection act.