Market Research: 5 Facts Clients Need To Know

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Photo provided by: Guest blogging community
Photo provided by: Guest blogging community

Thinking of getting into market research? Jobs aren’t easy to come by, and you’ll need to have a head start at the interview. It helps to think through your early market research projects and consider what your clients will ask of you. If you haven’t done any freelance market research work, here are five typical examples of market research questions that every entrepreneur wants answers to.

1. Is It Worth Going Mobile?

Mobile search is on the rise, but not every industry will find it crucial to have a fully optimised mobile site. If your client has an ecommerce website, they’re more likely to find it relevant.

Using market research, you can figure out whether your audience is using smartphones and tablets, and what percentage of that audience is likely to be interested in a fully mobile experience.

2. Who Is Our Customer?

Market research is all about getting the bigger picture, but a business really needs to know who the typical customer is. That means sifting through data to build up a profile in the simplest possible terms.

In order to present an accurate report to the client, you may find it useful to use a relatively small, but highly accurate, set of data. Interviewing a small number of targeted individuals will make profiling easier than it is if you collect huge reams of data about the general population.

3. Are Our Methods Biased?

Getting honest opinions is always tricky, and the kind of people who respond to research may automatically be more engaged than people who never respond to questions about their spending habits. It’s impossible to select a completely unbiased, untainted group of people.

Surveying the company’s Facebook following may sound like a great shortcut to your market, but the results you get will be skewed from the norm. This may not be a catastrophe as long as you recognise the bias in the conclusions you draw.

4. What Does the Research Mean?

Most business owners and entrepreneurs are far too busy to sift through hundreds of surveys or transcripts. They want you to do the legwork for them. That means understanding where they’re going and what their vision for the business is.
How does your research fit in with their goals? What would you advise, based on the responses you got in your research? The business owner wants you to tell them, in a nutshell, what you think of the results so they can make a decision. They don’t want to have to figure it out in their own time. That means you need to be familiar with the company from start to finish.

5. Did Our Research Run Into Problems?

Sometimes you’ll get part way through a market research job before realising something’s wrong. It may be something as simple as a poorly worded question. Don’t let it get you down, and don’t throw out your research. But even more importantly: don’t try to hide it from your client.
Most business owners appreciate that market research is fuzzy and involves trial and error. As long as you feed your mistakes back into your future market research work, you’re continually improving and honing your results. That’s what your client wants to see.

Finding Market Research Jobs

Picking up skills is the first step towards a career in market research, and this article should have given you a few pointers towards the questions you’ll need to ask. If you need more practice, try freelancing for a while before looking for your first position.

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Sam Wright

Sam Wright is a journalist based in Norwich, Norfolk

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