What exactly is “consumer behavior” and what kind of impact does it have on your business’s financial success? Consumer behavior is something that is studied by a research professional. Psychologists and statisticians then analyze the data and turn it into actionable advice for a company or business. For example, a research professional may be assigned to a certain grocery store or retail establishment. He or she will politely ask passing customers if they wouldn’t mind shopping while the researcher observes and asks questions along the way. The researcher will have a set list of questions, typically about the store’s layout, attractiveness of the merchandise, presentation of products, customer service, etc. The customer’s responses will be recorded and put into a report for later, more in-depth analysis.
Once the researcher has collected his or her assigned number of surveys, a report summarizing the findings is written, and the surveys are then turned over for analysis. This analysis involves qualitative as well as quantitative reasoning, some levels of data mining, ethnographic analysis, and human factor computing. Expert teams of “data scientists” recreate the customer experience using the collected data and turn it into actionable advice for the company that hired them.
How can customer surveys help my company?
Knowing your business from the customers’ perspective is quite different from running the business itself. Customer surveys teach you things about your business that you never would have known had you not asked. Companies that have employed customer-behavior researchers and analysts have been known to change the entire layout of their stores based on such research, and, as a result, have noted a significant increase in traffic within the store, happier customers and increased profits.
In another example, a researcher trained in human factors noted that the checkers at a busy grocery store stood for hours at a time on concrete floors. This led to fatigue, chronic pain, sick days taken, and a general mood of discomfort from the employees. After the report and analysis came back, the advice was to provide cushioned floor mats at each station. This small improvement led to more comfortable employees, less money lost to sick days, and a remarkable improvement in customer service attitudes. This led to happier customers, which led to an increase in business and increases in profits.
Customer behavior and customer satisfaction surveys give companies insight into their clients’ preferences, habits, likes, and dislikes. Armed with this knowledge, businesses can adjust their practices accordingly and are significantly more successful as a result. The science of human behavior is a fascinating subject, and making use of it can impact your company or business considerably. Whether you choose to study your customers, your employees, or both, the more in-depth knowledge you have about your business, the more effective you will be at running it.
NBRI helps companies just like yours become global leaders by combining powerful research with deep analytics. If you’re ready to join their ranks, here’s how we can help: