I’m interested in conducting market research, what do I need to know?

Organizations are often in such a hurry to move a product/service to market, they can rush the data collection process. As a result, they end up with collecting data that is skewed or inaccurate in some way. When performing market research, one of the most important things to ensure is whether a sample size is representative of the market you wish to target. To understand this, you will have to focus on both Confidence Level and Sampling Error. A Confidence Level is the probability that the data represents the thinking of all possible participants, or whether the data are truly representative of the customer base you would like to target. Sampling Error is essentially the opposite, which is the probability there are irregularities in the data. In other words, whether the sample contains too many unique or unusual customers.

When you decide on the margin of error that is acceptable for your market research it is easy to calculate your ideal sample size using a sample size calculator. This will let you know how large your sample must be to ensure the market research is valid.

When developing Market research questions, it is often frequently subject to myopia or bias. Since market research is typically undertaken by people who are heavily invested in a product or service, they often see a very one-sided perspective of the product. In effect, they could be hindered by over-investment, neglecting to ask critical questions or consider diverse perspectives. Furthermore, product development teams may, even unintentionally, ask a set of questions that will only confirm their existing point of view. For this reason, it may be advisable to solicit an external “set of eyes” when developing market research.