Market research is a process of gathering, analysing and interpreting raw data about target market, product or service, competitors and about past, present and potential consumers to derive usable business information.
Almost all business decisions in a corporate environment are backed by some or other kind of market research input yet it’s not obvious to most of us. Take an example where decision makers have to decide to launch a new product or service under one of their business verticals. In this scenario, what all information they need to help them take correct decisions?
Some of the questions that needs to be answered are:
- What group of people can be considered ideal customers for the new product or service?
- What all need(s) the new product or service will fulfil for end customers?
- What other products/services are available in the market which will compete with proposed product/service?
- How big is the market for the new product or service?
- In which geographies the new product or service can be launched initially?
- What are political, economical, social, technological, legal, environmental scenario in those geographies?
and so forth.
All these questions can be answered by using market research.
Market research is comprised of two words “market” and “research” and literally means “research about market”. Here the term market can represent a target geography (for example: USA market) or product category (for example: Car market) or a combination of both (for example: Car market in USA).
Market research is a well structured process which involves collection & gathering of raw data related to target market, product or service, competitors and about past, present and potential consumers to help answer key research questions which can help decision makers in taking right decisions.
This data is collected using data collection techniques like interviews, focus group discussions, secondary resources etc. The collected data is then analysed using qualitative and quantitative research techniques. This results into refined information which can be presented to decision makers for use.
Thus as we see here market research is essential and a vital method designed to provide answers to key business questions.