Ultimate Guide to Consumer Research Types

Ultimate Guide to Consumer Research Types

Consumer insights research is the process of studying your consumers' behavior. It discovers what motivates them, why they behave in certain ways, and what they think of your product or service. It is crucial for brands to conduct consumer research to survive in today's competitive market. This article covers the following topics:

  • Consumer insights research types
  • How to use consumer insights data
  • Consumer insights research by product sampling

Four main categories of consumer research

There are four major types of consumer research. They are complementary and can be mixed together to run a research campaign in order to gain a more detailed and complete understanding of the consumers. 

Primary research

In this type of research, the business has direct contact with the consumer. That means there is no third party involved in this type of research. Consumers answer questions in surveys, interviews, or focus groups that are arranged by the business itself. 

In the primary research, you can target the most suitable group and tailor your questionnaire to the exact information you need. If you access data by investigating other resources, it wouldn't be recognized as primary research.

Secondary research

Secondary research involves applying and using the old research conducted by other companies or agencies. This kind of research is usually run on a large scale and the results are free or accessible to buy by any interested company. You may use this type of research to study market trends or make comparisons with your competitors. Since the information is not exclusive to your business, you cannot expect actionable insights from secondary research as you do from the primary one.

Primary research is usually more expensive but tailored to your needs and it takes more time, whereas secondary research is cheaper and quicker but the information may be too old and not very specific.

Also Read: Differences Between Market Research and Consumer Insights Research

Quantitative research

Quantitative consumer research generates statistical data. For instance, how old they are, how much they earn annually, where they live, etc. It's quite easy to analyze numerical data because it's straightforward and based on facts (and not opinions).

The most common method to conduct quantitative research is to send surveys to your consumers. However, there should be a big enough number of participants to make the results valid and detect the trends in the market. Usually, there needs to be a specialist who designs the survey questions in a way that is going to generate the most beneficial results for the business.

Qualitative research

Qualitative consumer research, unlike quantitative research, is subjective and based on opinions. Focus groups and interviews are the most common methods to do qualitative research. The questions are usually open-ended and consumers express their feelings or thoughts about your brand or a specific product. This type of research tells you a lot about what your consumers think of you and therefore, it is really important to find the right group of people to interview.

Quantitative research answers to questions of how much and how many whereas qualitative questions answers to why and how ones. You need a large group of consumers to run quantitative research but for the other one, you need to find a small group of right people.

Qualitative consumer research results in narrative reports with direct quotations from participants and quantitative research generates statistical reports including correlations and comparisons.

You may also be interested in: Seven consumer research methods; 2022 version

How to use consumer insights data?

Consumer insights data is supposed to improve your business in general. It is also important to set a goal before gathering data and have plans on how to utilize it. 

  • You can identify the most common issues and questions and create informative content for your consumers. It shows them that you genuinely care about your consumers and they are heard.
  • You may spot some trends in your consumers' behavior when you analyze your primary research data. This helps you tailor your future plans to fit those trends and therefore make an in-demand product or service.
  • From the customer support aspect, you can detect the most common questions and queries and assign them to the right team member in order to deliver excellent customer care service.
  • Last but not least, consumer insights data is there to tell you how you can improve your product or service, what your customers expect from you, and consequently, what could raise your revenue generation.

Read more: How Consumer Insights Help Your Business Grow

Consumer insights research by product sampling

Peekage, as a digital product sampling platform, runs consumer insight research campaigns by product testing method. 

With the help of their consumer mobile application, they target the right group of users and give them your product samples. Then, the consumers receive a survey to answer questions about your product and their experience with your brand.

You will receive a detailed, data-driven report that is as personalized as possible to your product. What differentiates this method from others, is the targeted group of participants in the research campaign. You will gain deeper and more real insights because they come from the right source.

Also read: Experiential Marketing: Taking Your Business to the Next Level

Key takeaways:

  • There are four main consumer insights research types: primary, secondary, quantitative, and qualitative research.
  • Depending on your goal, you can mix any of those research types to get the data you need to improve your business.
  • Consumer insights data can be used in different parts of a business, such as customer support, informative content, trends spotting, and product refinement. 
  • One of the most efficient methods to gather consumer insights data is product sampling.

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