Thread: Market Research

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  1. Dancin with the devil
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    Market Research


    I would take a stab and say that many people often overlook this important aspect of marketing. In part, I am one of those people. I was curious to know what questions you ask of your customers, visitors, etc. to determine your target market? What questions do you feel help you out the most? What answers do you seek that give you the best direction and informed information about how to market and build conversions?
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    Depends upon what you are aiming the market research at. Generally speaking you should have a question you want to answer with the market research and you should know how that answer will effect what you do.
    Keyword research is a form of market research where the question is what do people buying my product type into search engines when they want to buy?
    If you are looking at taking out a radio ad you might want to know what kinds of music your best customers listen too. Or for a print ad what other hobbies they have so you can target the right magazines.

    If you are thinking about adding a new product line you might want to know if your existing customer base is interested in that kind of product.

    I don't think there is one set of questions to ask or one goal for market research. The key is having an idea of what you may or may not do and then determining what information can inform your decision. The same as webmetrics/analytics.
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    I should add that many questions that people would normally turn to market research to answer can be better answered for e-commerce companies by doing an A/B split.

    For example someone might ask if trust is an important factor in purchasing X product. That would be a market research question.
    But on an e-commerce site you can get better data by just doing an A/B split of adding a solid trust mark in a prominent position on the site.
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    I realize this is a pretty vague question which I apologize for but I am not sure what questions we should be asking. On our cart, we have fields like DOB, location, etc. to try and determine our target market. What we really need to do is compile all that data in one place and see if there are any solid consistencies.

    I guess we are trying to determine how much and what type of information is needed to allow our site to be more appealing to the target audience as well as determine our target audience. Should we improve our checkout form and add a few more fields to gather relevant info? Should we email survey's to past buyers?

    This is an area I personally have not explored yet hence the not-so-specific question. I would think any type of demographic information is important to see what kind of lingo or terms different generations use. We want to up our conversion rate and want to get a better idea of how to do this with the site. I guess the best bet would be to ask a few simple questions to our current visitors/buyers and see what they think of the current layout.

    I suppose its back to the drawing board to figure out what we are ultimately looking to gather and get answers for.

    Comments on this post

    • realityhack agrees : "...figure out what we are ultimately looking to gather and get answers for." Exactly.
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    Originally Posted by Lb1878
    ...On our cart, we have fields like DOB, location, etc. to try and determine our target market...
    The first A/B test I would do is removing those questions from your cart. Especially DOB unless you have some other very good reason for asking. People consider that to be quite personal information and may be abandoning because of it. Could be it doesn't matter to your demographic. But I would test it.

    As for lingo etc. I again would look more at splitting ad copy and landing copy and seeing what works best. No need to make assumptions based on age as to what people want to see. Just test wither one style converts better than another.
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    After reading your response, I think that is more or less what we trying to determine. Is the age a viable question? Or what is the viable information needed to make an informed decision on how to structure the site?

    The DOB thing is not required and I firmly agree that it is a personal question. We figured if we could see the age group of people, it would help us determine the type of content we should write and who to cater more too. This falls into a previous question I asked in another thread about different persona's for a website.

    If you don't mind me asking, what type of market research do you usually conduct? Is it for you, clients, both? You can PM if you wish to not disclose the info publicly but I may be off with my perception of market research.
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    It completly depends on whta info you want to know!!!

    Are the questions open / closed?
    Is it face to face, tele, email etc?
    Can you offer a reason for people to answer your questions?
    What will you do with the info?
    Who's going to do the survey?
    How will it be monitiored?

    Once you answer a few of these you can start tailoring the questions
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    Originally Posted by Lb1878
    Is the age a viable question? Or what is the viable information needed to make an informed decision on how to structure the site?
    Check your PM's
    Also,
    Age is IMO a viable question if you think it will effect something you do. You gave an example of site copy and age demographics could give you a place to start there. But keep in mind that subsets of each age will act differently. Tech savvy 16 year olds will not act the same as those who know less for example and they will likely respond to different copy. You may be able to make an educated guess as to what you are dealing with just by looking at your products. Then I suggest testing. The biggest reason being that we have seen some surprises when we did testing. We had everyone in the building saying that page B was a slam dunk over A and then it showed lower conversions.

    For site structure start with your server logs or webmetrics data and look at how people navigate your site. Pay special attention to pages where people exit the site. Make sure you are familiar with standard 'heat maps' and take advantage of other peoples testing.
    Then test changes in the navigation to see how that effects user flow. See if moving elements results in fewer people leaving on that page etc. Again the results can be surprising.

    Comments on this post

    • Lb1878 agrees : Thanks! Very much appreciated.

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