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Primary Market Research

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Business Studies

Despite widely available research articles and websites, there are some things that businesses must learn on their own. To figure out exactly what consumers think about a brand or a new advertising campaign, a company needs to conduct its own market research. This is referred to as primary market research, and it can be conducted using a variety of methods. Read on to learn more about primary market research.

Primary market research definition

Primary market research, also known as field research, refers to data that has been collected for the first time by a researcher or a business. The methods of collecting primary research may involve surveys, interviews, or focus groups.

Primary market research examples

There are many types of primary research, but what they all have in common is that they are all conducted first-hand by the business or a researcher. Here is an example of how businesses can use primary research:

A business may want to find out how customers feel about the new product that the company has recently released. The most effective way to do this is by carrying out primary research. The business can find out this information by conducting focus groups and collecting consumers' thoughts and opinions regarding the product. The information can help businesses develop surveys, for instance, to reach a broader population and address particular questions that have arisen during focus groups.

What are the primary market research methods?

Primary research can involve a variety of methods used to collect data by the researcher or a business. Most importantly, businesses should choose the most suitable method that will help to address certain issues and achieve the set research goals. The key methods of primary market research are:

Experimenting

This involves businesses experimenting with various new methods before releasing final versions. An example might be experimenting with a new advertisement campaign to see how much the audience has engaged with it before investing more money into it.

Moreover, the company may release a test version of a product to a small group of people to understand how well the product performs before releasing the final version to a larger audience. Experimenting is a useful primary research method as it helps businesses avoid losing a lot of money on unsuccessful campaigns or products.

Observing

This market research method involves the observation of consumers' behaviour. For example, supermarkets may install a device called a recognition sensor that can track the movements of shoppers in the store. Companies can use collected data to identify consumer behaviour so that they can organise products in the store in a way that maximises sales.

Surveying

This method usually involves interviews or written questionnaires given to customers that already have some idea about the product or brand. The questions can be tailored in a way that can help businesses find exactly what they are looking for. There are various forms of surveys but the most common ones are:

Questionnaires

Questionnaires can be carried out either online or in person and can involve open answers as well multiple choice questions. Questionnaires conducted online can cover a large population and be an inexpensive and fast way to collect data.

The downsides include the fact that not all respondents fit within the target audience of the survey; respondents may not consider their answers carefully; and some may only respond because they are being rewarded. On the other hand, in-person questionnaires may be more time-consuming and cover fewer people, but responses may be more accurate and insightful than in online questionnaires.

Focus groups

Focus groups are small gathering of people who discuss a particular issue that a business may be facing. This may include opinions in regards to new products, advertisements, brand positioning in the market, and how the brand is viewed compared to competitors.

Although participants attending focus groups cannot represent the market as a whole, they can give insightful and in-depth information that can be used to explore the issue further. This covers a larger population using methods such as questionnaires.

Online research

This type of research can be carried out online by the business itself. By using analytics systems, companies can track the number of visitors as well as consumer behaviour on their website. Moreover, businesses can collect information about visitor demographics and behaviour such as location, language, and device used to access the website.

Telephone surveys

Telephone surveys involve businesses calling customers and asking for their views in regard to various business concerns, such as views on products, advertisement campaigns, or consumers' purchasing habits.

A telephone survey can cover a large number of people quickly and at an affordable cost. However, customers might be suspicious of the calls or receive them at an inconvenient time, which is likely to lead to a lower response rate.

Customer/supplier feedback

This method includes businesses collecting feedback from existing customers or their suppliers. Most products include customer support or feedback numbers on the back of their packages, which allow customers to call and give feedback on the product.

Feedback can also be collected directly after consumers receive the service by sending a feedback form via email or text message. Supplier feedback can also be collected to gain more insight into how the business performs in relation to its competitors.

primary market research forms of survey, StudySmarterFigure 1. Forms of surveys, StudySmarter

Primary market research advantages and disadvantages

Primary research can be an effective market research method for businesses to collect the exact data that they are searching for. However, it can be time-consuming and incur some additional business expenses. In this section, we will look at both the advantages and disadvantages of primary market research.

Advantages of primary research

1. Relevant and tailored to meet business's needs

By undertaking primary research businesses can tailor it exactly to the company's needs and can help answer the exact questions that an organisation is looking for. For example, by undertaking primary research methods such as focus groups, telephone surveys or questionnaires, businesses can find customers' views on new products or advertisement campaigns, this may be difficult or impossible to do using secondary research methods.

2. Up to date

Primary research allows businesses to keep their market research up to date since businesses can collect data directly from their customers at a particular period as well as continue to collect data for the research to remain current. On the other hand, if the company is using secondary research, some of the data will not be current, meaning many resources will be outdated.

3. Some research methods are convenient

Not all, but a number of primary research methods are pretty convenient. For example, online research and telephone or online surveys can be carried out from the office and do not require travelling. This means a large population size can be covered quickly and inexpensively.

3. Gaining deep insights on the subject

Primary research methods, such as focus groups, allow businesses to gain deep insight into a subject and find out exactly what they are looking for. For example, consumer opinions on the brand or new products, as well as a comparison between the brand and its competitors.

Disadvantages of primary research

1. Expensive

Primary research is usually more expensive than secondary research. To motivate more participants to answer the survey, the company may need to invest in advertising. Or in terms of focus groups, a company may need to offer incentives to motivate participants to attend the research and give insightful answers.

2. Time-consuming

The process involved in collecting primary research data may be time-consuming, as the process may involve recruiting participants, collecting data, analysing data, and generating reports. Instead, secondary research would probably take less time, as businesses could directly use analysed data.

3. Research that is not performed correctly can lead to misleading results

Research results can be biased if the research process is not done correctly. A number of factors can lead to this, including misinterpretation of results, analysis of data according to one's opinions, and inaccuracy.

Primary Market Research
Advantages Disadvantages
Relevant and tailored to meet business needsExpensive
Up to dateTime-consuming
ConvenienceIf not performed correctly can lead to misleading results
Gaining deep insights into the subject

How do you carry out primary market research?

Carrying out primary research might involve a step-by-step process. In this section we will identify the key steps involved in carrying out primary research.

Identification of an issue

The first step in the primary research process involves identifying the purpose of the research and what exactly the business is trying to discover.

Selecting an appropriate research design

One of the most important steps, this involves choosing a data collection method and appropriate questions that will assist the company in addressing a specific issue.

Data collection

This is essential to collect accurate data. Therefore, the company must use reliable survey collection sites and trained staff for conducting interviews. Once the data is collected, it is important that it is securely stored.

Data analysis

In this step, the collected data is analysed and interpreted to provide useful information for addressing the business problem. Businesses will use this data to generate reports and make their action plans.

Presenting data and developing an action plan

As the final step of primary research collection, reports are generated and presented in a way that can be easily understood by coworkers who may not have been involved in the research. In addition, research results can assist businesses in developing a strategy and action plan to address an issue.

Primary market research, steps, StudySmarterFigure 2. Steps of primary research, StudySmarter

Primarily market research is carried out by the business itself or a researcher for the purpose of addressing the specific issues the business faces. Primary research involves a variety of methods that can be selected depending on the purpose and goals of the research. When done correctly, primary research can help a company reach its goals and objectives.

Primary market research - Key takeaways

  • Primary market research, also known as field research, refers to data that is been collected for the first time by a researcher or a business.
  • The key methods involved in the primary research are experimenting, observing, and surveying.
  • The key forms of the survey are questionnaires, focus groups, online research, telephone interviews, customer/supplier feedback, and printed press.
  • The key advantages of primary market research are that it is relevant and tailored to the business needs, up-to-date, convenient, and helps to gain deep insights on the subject.
  • The key disadvantages of primary market research are that it can be expensive, and time-consuming, and research that is not performed correctly can lead to misleading results.
  • The steps involved in carrying out primary research are 1) Identification of issue 2) Selecting an appropriate research design 3) Data collection 4) Data analysis 5) Presenting data and developing an action plan.

Primary Market Research

Primary market research, also known as field research, refers to data that has been collected for the first time by a researcher or a business. 

The main types of market research are experimenting, observing and surveying. Moreover, surveying involves many types of market research such as focus groups. 

The steps involved in obtaining primary market research are:

 1) Identification of the issue 

2) Selecting an appropriate research design 

3) Data collection 

4) Data analysis 

5) Presenting data and developing an action plan. 

Primary research is research conducted first-hand by the company or the researcher. Thus, the data collected can be tailored to meet the specific need of the business. However, this type of research can be time-consuming and expensive. Secondary market research, on the other hand, involves using information collected by a third party, outside of the business. For example, textbooks, academic journals and online articles. While data from secondary market research is easily accessible, it needs to be verified before use to avoid errors. 

Conducting primary research is important since it can be used to address company-specific issues first-hand. The company may be unable to do this using secondary research. The data collected is also up-to-date and tailored to meet the business's needs. 

Final Primary Market Research Quiz

Question

What is meant by the primary market research?

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Answer

The primary market research also known as field research refers to data that is been collected for the first time by a researcher or a business. 

Show question

Question

What is primary research also known as?

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Answer

Field research.

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Question

What are the key methods used in primary market research?

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Answer

The key methods are;
 1) Identification of the issue 

2) Selecting an appropriate research design 

3) Data collection 

4) Data analysis 

5) Presenting data and developing an action plan. 

Show question

Question

What is meant by experimenting?

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Answer

Is a type of market research method that involves businesses experimenting with various new methods before releasing final versions.

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Question

What is meant by observing?

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Answer

Is a type of market research method that usually involves the observation of the consumer's behaviours.  

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Question

Could you provide an example of how businesses can use the observing market research method?

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Answer

As an example, supermarkets may install a device called a recognition sensor that can track the movements of shoppers in the store. Companies can use collected data to identify consumer behaviour so that they can organise products in the store in a way that maximises sales.

Show question

Question

What is meant by surveying? 

Show answer

Answer

This method usually involves interviews or written questionnaires given to customers that have some idea about the product or brand.

Show question

Question

What are the key forms of survey? 

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Answer

The key forms of survey are:

  • Questionnaires, 
  • Focus groups, 
  • Online research, 
  • Telephone interviews,
  • Customer/supplier feedback
  • Printed press.


Show question

Question

What is meant by online research? 

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Answer

This type of research can be carried out online by the business itself, such as using analytics systems company can track the number of visitors and consumers behaviour on their website. 

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Question

What is meant by focus groups?

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Answer

Focus groups refer to the small group of people that gather to discuss a particular issue that a business may be facing.

Show question

Question

What are the key advantages of primary research?

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Answer

The key advantages of primary market research are:

  • The primary research can be relevant and tailored to the business needs, 
  • Primary research is up to date, 
  • Some research methods are convenient,
  • Primary research helps to gain deep insights on the subject.

Show question

Question

What are the key disadvantages of primary research?

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Answer

The key disadvantages of primary market research are:

  • Can be expensive, 
  • Time-consuming,
  • Research that is not performed correctly can lead to misleading results.

Show question

Question

What are the key steps involved in conducting primary research? 

Show answer

Answer

The key steps involved in conducting primary research are:

1) Identification of the issue 

2) Selecting an appropriate research design

3) Data collection

4) Data analysis

5) Presenting data and developing an action plan. 


Show question

Question

What is meant by the identification of an issue?

Show answer

Answer

This is the first step in the primary research process and it involves identifying the purpose of the research and what exactly the business is trying to discover by conducting research.

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Question

What is meant by the data analysis?

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Answer

This is the 4th step in the primary market research process and it involves analysing and interpreting collected data to provide useful information for addressing the business problem.

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Question

Primary market research and field research are the same.

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Answer

True

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Question

This method of primary market research involves businesses experimenting with various new methods before releasing final versions. What is it?

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Answer

Experimenting

Show question

Question

This method usually involves interviews or written questionnaires given to customers that already have some idea about the product or brand. What is it?


Show answer

Answer

Surveying

Show question

Question

To conduct market research, supermarkets may install a device called a recognition sensor that can track the movements of shoppers in the store. What method of market research is it?

Show answer

Answer

Observing

Show question

Question

What is the first step of primary market research?

Show answer

Answer

Identification of an issue

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Question

Primary research is usually more expensive than secondary research.


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Answer

True

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Question

___ refer to the small group of people that gather to discuss a particular issue that a business may be facing. 


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Answer

Focus groups 

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Question

___ refers to data that has been collected for the first time by a researcher or a business. 

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Answer

Primary market research, also known as field research, 

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Question

What is the last step of primary research?

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Answer

Presenting data and developing an action plan

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Question

There are three key methods of primary market research: experimenting, observing and...

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Answer

surveying.

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Question

There are three key methods of primary market research: experimenting, observing and...

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Answer

surveying.

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Question

To conduct market research, a company may release a test version of a product to a small group of people to test and see how well the product performs before releasing the final version of the product to a larger audience. What method of primary market research is it?

Show answer

Answer

Experimenting

Show question

Question

To conduct market research, companies can use collected data to identify consumer behaviour so that they can organise products in the store in a way that maximises sales. What method of market research is it?

Show answer

Answer

Observing

Show question

Question

If the company is using ___ research, some of the data will not be current, meaning many resources will be outdated.

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Answer

secondary 

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Question

___ research methods, such as focus groups, allow businesses to gain deep insight into a subject and find out exactly what they are looking for. 


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Answer

Primary 

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