How can I carry out good market research?

A friend of mine asked the following question:

“I am wanting to set up a small business selling stuff online although I want to make sure I get pricing/goods right. Does anyone know any really good methods of market research which doesnt involve asking on the street. Thanks”

First of all do some research online yourself into your competition. Find other business that sell the same or similar products online. Find out what they charge, how their business is set up etc.

Second, if your product can also be bought in real stores, visit them and find out what they charge, what else the shop offers, if the shop also has an online business.

Once you have done all the research into competition, you can do some online research. You can set up a a test site, put on it a questionnaire (try SurveyMonkey or many of the other online tools) and analyse the results. Make sure you ask for an email address for participation. This means that if people have actual interest, you already have a list of potention costumers one you go online with your business.

To get the right mix of products and price is always tricky. But if you are in a niche, then you can basically go with what you think is right. If you position it correctly and put enough effort in the web business (like advertising, articles, blogs etc) then people will be happy to spend on your site.

I would suggest you do some research online in how to set up a business online. There are many ‘gurus’ out there who offer expertise in setting up businesses and how to get traffic.

master research

Technorati Tags: business research, market research, project, questionnaire, sample

2 Comments
  1. ummmmmmmmmmmmm ask if u can leave questionaires and surveys or leaflets in shops – im sure some will let you leave some at the till – the hairdressers is a good place to leave stuff for people to fill in.
    References :

  2. Contact your local Business Link for lots of free help and information on starting in business. They have guidance on various ways of doing market research and sometimes have advisors who specialise in internet business.

    There’s a lot of research that you can do on-line by looking at the sites of businesses that sell similar products.

    Don’t get too hung up on price. Even if people’s first question is how much, they’re usually more interested in the quality of the product or service you provide and whether it’s really suitable for them. As long as you can satisfy those needs for them, price is a secondary consideration.

    Good luck!
    References :
    Business Link – http://www.parrexcellence.com

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