What is customer research?
Customer research is the practice of identifying what types of customers are interested in your products or services and what their motivations are.
What are the ways to conduct customer research?
There are multiple options to conduct customer research. Below you find an overview of the qualitative and quantitative customer research methods we use at Cnote.
How to conduct customer research?
The key to good customer research is segmentation. The main customer segments are demographics, geography, personal characteristics and behavioral tendencies. However, it is good to keep in mind that customers can be buyers (the ones paying), or users (the ones using it in their daily lives). At Cnote, we always map out the buyers and users.
- Who might be interested in buying your product or service? Why?
- Who will love using your product or service? Why?
Now, think like them. What are their needs? What affects their attitude towards your product or service?
Every customer segment has its own customer journey. It’s the path the customer follows when buying or using your product or service.
From our experience, very few companies fully understand their customer journeys. Very few companies know:
- Who their customers are
- What their customers are they doing today
- What their customers’ needs are
- Why customers will buy/use their solution
Cnote is there to help companies to find answers to these questions.
Customer research in 2020
During 2020, we found that many companies stopped doing customer research. This is regrettable because now is the time that consumer behavior is changing. The understanding of customer needs is very important during a crisis. You may have experienced that customers left you during 2020. You are not alone, many companies have experienced customer churn in the last months. On the other hand, some markets are booming. Think about online services or the cycling industry. The point is, if you are affected by the crisis, you might NOW have the time to conduct customer research. Take the time to reflect on your company. Try to map who your customers really are, and what they really want or need. Make choices to (re)design or improve your services.
Customer research uncertainties
We have been getting a lot of questions about customer research. How do we find respondents? Don’t we bother people now when we do research? Will the current situation not produce a distorted picture? Are we at risk of reputational damage if we question people during this period? The answers to these questions are dependent on your industry. However, we can certainly state that people are more open to research. Because people have more time and fewer social contacts, people are more willing to answer questions. And this benefits the quality of the research. But indeed, the current situation can give a distorted view. Our advice is to bundle and park all ‘corona emotion’ at the beginning of the conversation, and then make room for reflection on ‘normal’ practices.
We are always happy to help you out during these challenging times. We even have developed a new conversation tool to conduct online qualitative research with real customers!