Market research must never be underestimated. Many successful start-ups enjoy longevity because their business owners conduct regular market research to understand the target market, identify the customer problem, and pinpoint realistic competitors.
Proper research is one of the most powerful tools that you, as an entrepreneur, have for your retention. It can spell the difference between creating a business with real potential and one that is destined to go nowhere.
Why must you do Market Research?
It would help if you had market research to examine the market associated with a particular good and service and determine how the audience will receive it. Market research can be a significant factor in helping you.
- Understand your customers and their preferences
- Identify opportunities to grow and increase profits
- Identify and plan for industry and economic shifts
- Identify/Monitor the competition in your market
- Mitigate risk in your business decisions
Here are a few pointers you can take into consideration –
Find out what your Target Customers are looking
Something as simple as using keyword research will help you know what your target audience is looking for online. The keyword tool will tell you how many users have used particular search terms to find things on the internet in a month. You don’t have to create a demand for customers; you can also help serve their market.
Research your Competitors
Competitor analysis is critical. Research your competitors and then scrutinize their websites, order their products and use their services. Look at how and where they sell their products and services and how much they charge. Search online for reviews of them and their products. You are trying to find out what they do well, so you can do the same or better and what they do poorly to do better.
Find your Niche
Look at what other products or services are currently being sold in the market you wish to enter and where your product or service might fit in. Are you directing to be the cheapest, the most expensive, or somewhere between? Who will be above and below you in terms of price and quality? Then draw a mental picture of your market segment, who your target customer is, and how you can make your product most attractive to them. Think about your target customer demographics, what kind of job they will be doing, how often they will be buying your product and why.
Innovation is the key to success. Be creative with your product. It will also eliminate the competition. An innovative and enthusiastic team can help you achieve this goal. For example, when three university friends wanted to find out what people thought of their pulped fruit drink, they set up a stand at a local jazz music festival and put two bins outside. Customers were asked to vote on whether the potential entrepreneurs should give up their jobs to make their drinks full time by throwing their empty bottles into either a bin marked yes or a container marked no. The' Yes' bin was overflowing by the end of the weekend, and Innocent Smoothies was born.
Thus, it is important to plan wisely and figure out what works best for your startup and your customers as a startup. It is also essential to know that just meeting market research data will not ensure your company's success. You will also need to figure out how to use the data to your advantage and know what fits your budget and at what time.
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