Discover the steps to follow to ask yourself the right questions before carrying out quantitative market research. You can read our initial advice on this blog and download the complete guide in .pdf format
Episode #8/9 – Finally we have reached the famous quantitative phase, the online questionnaire that some people will try to sell you as a substitute for market research. It is step 13 of our market research methodology.
The quantitative survey is one of the last stages in market research. Problems need to be qualified before they can be quantified.
We have finally reached that stage. Now that you have improved your initial idea using Design Thinking, created and tested a prototype, analysed trends, checked the various environmental parameters (PESTEL analysis), better understood the expectations of your future clients, and studied the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors, you are finally ready to quantify customers’ receptiveness to your ideas.
This quantitative market research will deliver valuable information that will feed your business plan and your financial plan.
Preparing a good questionnaire for your quantitative market research represents a challenge and it will, once again, require some method and some work.
You need to start by writing good questions (and translating them correctly if your survey is conducted in several languages and/or in several countries), and then make sure that the questionnaire you submit is not too long for your respondents, before putting the questions to a representative panel of your future customers.
9 rules to observe when drafting your market research questionnaire
- Avoid sensitive issues
- Avoid negatives when writing your questions
- Only include questions that are strictly necessary for your market research
- Check that a single question is enough to obtain the information you seek
- If one question or aspect is essential, include a similar question (but phrase it differently) at another place in the questionnaire in order to confirm the answer to the first question
- Ask yourself if the interviewee can provide the information
- Ask yourself if the interviewee wants to provide the information
- Do not exceed 20 questions or 10 minutes
- Preferably use a Likert scale
Once your quantitative market research questionnaire has been developed, it is time to test it.
Statistical methods exist that allow extensive testing and ensure the validity of the questionnaire for the purposes of deduction. We will not be discussing these extremely complex methods here. All we can do is recommend that you test the questions on a small sample of individuals in order to observe how they respond and to detect any potential difficulties related, for example, to poorly formulated questions before moving forward.
You should pay special attention when writing the questions to make them as unambiguous as possible.
If you feel that your questionnaire is ready and in the case where several languages are required, carry out a double translation. This will ensure the consistency of the text in the different languages.
To “administer a survey” means asking people to answer your questions. This can be done in different ways.
The most common one nowadays is to launch an online survey using one of the many tools available. However, you still need to reach the targets that you want to question.
There is no point in performing a survey on a convenient sample of your friends and relatives if they are not the target. This may seem obvious, but how many times have you seen requests to respond to online surveys spring up on social media?
If you have a few hundred euros to invest, use them to rent a panel of online respondents whose profiles will match those of your future customers.
Most online surveys services have dashboards with trustworthy graphs, averages and intervals.
This is more than sufficient for the market research needs of a start-up. If you are a larger company and are looking to establish statistical correlations or even to build an econometric model, further analysis will be necessary. If this is your situation, please contact us so that we can advise you.
Read our next article about synthesising the results of your market research
The end of the tunnel is in sight! Your market research is almost complete!
The next stage, which we will go into in detail in our next article, will be to synthesise the results of your research, to identify the buoyant segments and to quantify the potential before writing your business plan and your financial plan.