For startups or small scale businesses, knowing the market landscape is vitally important. Whether you are launching a new product or are a player in a small niche, the accurate information regarding your customers is very important. In this post, we have highlighted some important market research tips for small business owners. Market research is very a very important aspect and is certainly part of very complete plan for a business. However, the whole idea of researching a large market can be daunting. You would need resources, time, and money to be invested and all done with no guarantee whatsoever of a useful result. Small businesses can be really very hurt by such a task at hand. Here are some tips which can help small business owners to conduct their market research.
Start By framing a budget
First, thing you should know about market research is that it is scalable and hence can cost from almost nothing to a lot of money. Everything is dependent on how much you are willing to invest. Hence, the first step would be to set a skeleton with some room for expansion depending on the positive outcome of your market research.
Broadly decide the medium of research
You can do an online market research or an offline one. Both follow different sorts of strategy, with the core idea being the same. However, since you would need to tailor your plans according to the medium, it’s a good idea to choose it right from the start. For online businesses, having an online market survey is most useful because of its lower costs and wider reach. Moreover, doing an online market research gives you more avenues to grow.
Conduct surveys or polls
This is the most direct and hence the surest of way to obtain data regarding your market. What’s important is that you ask fewer questions but the correct ones. There are two forms of surveys, one is a closed form survey and another is open one. In the first variant, people are asked to answer in yes, no and maybe or rate something in discrete numbers. In the latter case, one is asked to describe their reactions or answers. The first and the second form give almost the same sort of information. However, the first one is taken by larger number of people, while latter is avoided because it takes too much time.
Track Sales records
This is especially useful if you decide on doing an offline market research. You can find the data on the sales records at various stores and find our information like at what time of the year; people buy more things, or what people like to buy in different times of the year. This sort of information from market research will help you fix modulate your sales volumes and also channelize your advertising efforts.
Market research tips should be part of both your short term and long term plans. Market research, when done effectively, can bring information which can lead to a radical change in the revenue, because it increase your knowledge regarding the customers and the market in general. Not only will you be able to plan your future strategies well, you can steer your current sales, and marketing efforts in the right direction. Market research is and should be the first step in sort of marketing effort. With so many low-cost ways to conduct market research, being a small business, shouldn’t be much of an obstacle.
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