Asking the right market research questions can help you understand your target customers and map their behavior and preferences.
But what does it actually mean?
Let’s look at a sample from a market research survey report for mapping brand awareness:
From this simple Q&A report, you can:
- Visualize the proportions of demographic segments among your audience.
- Measure how your brand is performing in comparison to others.
- Pick the top preferred brand among the customers, explore what makes it stand out, and apply the same techniques to your brand.
- See how your target market perceives brand advertisements and promotional efforts.
Now imagine if this type of data set is available for different aspects of your business – product development, marketing campaigns, optimization plans, and more.
That’s what market research does for you.
With the evolution of customer interaction points and constantly changing market trends, more and more businesses are fueling efforts in doing in-depth market research, as evidenced by the steady increase in the revenue of the market research industry worldwide.
Market research can help you develop essential business strategies and maintain a competitive advantage over other brands to increase conversions and customer base.
And it all starts with asking the right questions to the right audience.
That’s why we have created this collection of 100+ market research questions to ask your target market. Each question aims at uncovering a specific attribute about your customers. You can use a combination of these market survey questions for your market research surveys, interviews, and other marketing questionnaires for customers.
We have also added key tips to help you write your own effective market analysis questions if the need arises.
100+ Great Market Research Questions to Ask Your Customers
The main challenge while designing and conducting research is – “What market research questions should I ask in my customer survey?” That’s why we have a carefully curated list of over 100 market research questions to help get started.
To Explore New Product Opportunities
- What was your first reaction to the product?
- Would you purchase this product if it were available today?
- What feature would you like to see on the website/product?
- Which feature do you think will help improve the product experience for you?
- Of these four options, what’s the next thing you think we should build?
- What’s the one feature we can add that would make our product indispensable for you?
- Would the implementation of [this feature] increase the usability of the [product name]?
- Please let us know how we can further improve this feature?
- What problem would you like to solve with our product?
To Collect Feedback on Existing Products
- Have you heard of [product name or category] before?
- How would you feel if [product name] was no longer available?
- How disappointed would you be if you could no longer use [Product/feature name?]
- How often do you use [product name]?
- How long have you been using [product name] for?
- When was the last time you used [product name]?
- Please rate the following product features according to their importance to you.
- According to you, In which area is this product/service lacking the most? Specify below.
- How does the product run after the update?
- Rate our product based on the following aspects:
- Have you faced any problems with the product? Specify below.
- What feature did you expect but not find?
- How are you planning to use [product or service]?
- How satisfied are you with the product?
To Segment the Target Market
- Please specify your age.
- Please specify your gender.
- Select your highest level of education.
- What is your current occupation?
- What is your monthly household income?
- What is your current marital status?
- What is the name of your company?
- Where is your company’s headquarters located?
- Please specify the number of employees that work in your company.
- What is your job title?
- In which location do you work?
- Which activity do you prefer in your free time?
- Which other physical activities do you take part in?
- Where is your dream holiday destination?
- Please rate the following as per their priority in your life – Family, work, and social life?
- Are you happy with your current work-life balance?
- Do you describe yourself as an optimist or a pessimist?
- How often do you give to charity?
- How do you travel to work?
- How do you do your Holiday shopping?
Do a Competition Analysis
- Which product/service would you consider as an alternative to ours?
- Rate our competitor based on the following:
- Have you seen any website/product/app with a similar feature?
- How would you compare our products to our competitors?
- Why did you choose to use our [product] over other options?
- Compared to our competitors, is our product quality better, worse, or about the same?
- Which other options did you consider before choosing [product name]?
- Please list the top three things that persuaded you to use us rather than a competitor.
- According to you, which brand best fits each of the following traits.
To Gauge Brand Awareness
- [Your brand name] Have you heard of the brand before?
- How do you feel about this brand?
- How did you hear about us?
- Describe [brand name] in one sentence.
- Based on its current features and attributes, would you recommend [your brand name] to others?
- If yes, please tell us what you like the most about [your brand name]?
- If no, please specify the reason.
- How likely are you to purchase a product from this company again?
- Have you seen this brand’s advertisements?
- If yes, where have you seen or heard about our brand recently? (Select all that apply)
- Do you currently use the product of this brand?
- Have you purchased from this brand before?
- Do you currently use the product of this brand?
- Of all the brands offering similar products, which do you feel is the best brand?
- Please specify what makes it the best brand for you in the category.
- Which of the following products have you tried? (Select all that apply)
- On a scale of 1 to 10, how likely would you recommend this brand to a friend or colleague?
To Map Customers’ Preferences
- Have you ever boycotted a brand? If so, which brand and why?
- What influences your purchase decision more – price or quality of the item?
- How many hours do you spend on social media like Facebook, Instagram, etc.?
- How do you do your monthly grocery shopping – online or through outlets?
- How do you search for the products you want to buy?
- Rate the factors that affect your buying decision for [product].
- What persuaded you to purchase from us?
- How likely are you to purchase a product from us again?
- Please rate the following aspects of our product based on their importance to you.
- What is the most important value our product offers to you?
- Which of the following features do you use least?
- How well does the product meet your needs?
To Map Customers’ Reservations
- Is there anything preventing you from purchasing at this point?
- What’s preventing you from starting a trial?
- Do you have any questions before you complete your purchase?
- What is the main reason you’re canceling your account?
- What are your main reasons for leaving?
- What was your biggest fear or concern about purchasing from us?
- What is the problem that the product/service helped to solve for you?
- What problems did you encounter while using our [product]?
- How easy did we make it to solve your problem?
- What is your greatest concern about [product]?
- Have you started using other similar products? If yes, what made you choose that product?
To Perform Pricing Analysis
- Would you purchase the product at [price]
- According to you, what should be the ideal price of the [product name]?
- Is our product pricing clear?
- According to you, what is the ideal price range for the product?
To Collect Feedback on Website Copy
- Please rate the website based on the following aspects:
- How well does the website meet your needs?
- Was the information easy to find?
- Was the information clearly presented?
- What other information should we provide on our website?
- How can we make the site easier to use?
- What could we do to make this site more useful?
- Is there anything on this site that doesn’t work the way you expected it to?
- How easy was it to find the information you were looking for?
- Have feedback or an idea? Leave it here!
- Help us make the product better. Please leave your feedback.
7 Types of Market Research Questions
The answer choices in a market research survey question can significantly impact the quality and reliability of the response data you collect from the audience.
Some answer types help categorize the audience, while others measure their satisfaction or agreement.
So, before listing the market research survey questions to ask your target audience, let’s understand their types:
A multiple-choice question lets users select more than one answer from the given options. These questions are great for collecting multiple data sets using the same question and gauging people’s preferences, opinions, and suggestions.
In a single-choice question, the respondent can select only one answer from the given options. This question type is great for:
- Segregating the users.
- Prioritizing product updates based on user consensus.
- Disqualifying irrelevant respondents by placing the question at the start of your market research survey.
A matrix matching grid can combine multiple market research questions into one to make the survey shorter. There is only one condition – the individual questions should have the same response anchors as shown in the image below:
The questions are arranged in rows while the answer options occupy the grid columns.
A ranking question can help map customers’ preferences and set priorities for product development. This question type asks the respondent to arrange the given options in their decreasing/increasing preference.
A dichotomous question poses a simple yes or no scenario to the respondent. These question types can help disqualify irrelevant people from the survey and categorize the users into two groups.
Likert scale market research questions can help you measure the extent of respondents’ agreement/disagreement to the given statement. The answer options are arranged from positive to negative sentiments or vice-versa, with the neutral option in the middle.
There are two types of Likert scales: 5-point and 7-point.
Open-ended market questions let you explore the respondents’ minds without adding any restrictions to the answer. This question type is followed by a blank space for the respondent to add a free-text response.
You can add an open-ended question as a follow-up after the first question to explore reasons for the customer’s previous answer. It also lets you collect more in-depth information about their issues, pain points, and delights.
Tools like Qualaroo offer tons of different question types for your surveys. Just pick the question and match its answer option type from the drop-down. To make it more effective, you can add branching to the survey.
How to Write Your Own Marketing Research Questions
It’s imperative to have a dedicated repository of market research questions for your surveys. But nothing’s better than crafting your questions.
For this, you need to sit with your team and discuss what information you require from the customers. It lets you analyze and document how much data you already have in your system, which can help set the market research scope.
We have listed some questions you need to ask yourself before asking market research questions to your potential customers or target market:
Audience Segmentation Questions
Audience segmentation questions help to size up your target market and provide a granular view of the audience. Not all customers are equal, and audience segmentation makes it possible to focus on each group individually to address their issues, fears, and expectations.
Here’s what you need to know before you start writing questions to understand your audience:
- Do we understand the demographics of the new market we are trying to target? (Age, location, ethnicity, education, company, annual income, etc.)
- What are locations that drive the most customers to our business? How are these locations different from others?
- What are the interests, preferences, fears of people from our new target market? Have we addressed these situations for our current customer base?
- What are the psychographics attributes of the current customers and potential market? Are we targeting these in our campaigns?
- What are the most popular engagement channels for our customers? Which channels drive the most traffic to our website?
- Do we have enough data to perform value segmentation to separate high-value customers from low-value customers?
- How often do these high-value customers make a purchase?
Product-Based Market Research Questions
Product-based market research questions can produce precious insights to channel into your product development and optimization strategies. You can see how changing technology affects customers’ behavior, what new features they want to see in your product, and how they perceive your products and services over the competition.
Start by gathering information about the following:
- How does our product compare to the competition based on the features?
- What products do our competitors offer?
- What new features do customers want to see in our products? Do we have a product roadmap to deliver these updates?
- What unique solutions do our products offer? What is the value proposition that reflects this offering?
- Does our product incorporate the latest technological advancements?
- What channels do we use to collect product feedback from our users?
- What are customers’ preferences while choosing our products over competitors?
Pricing Market Research Questions
Pricing analysis can help you make your product more affordable to different customer segments while maintaining the desired gross margin. It also lets you restructure the pricing tiers to provide features depending on the customers’ requirements and company size.
Your sales and marketing team can help you hone in on the market research questions to ask your customers for running pricing analysis:
- Do the customers ever complain about the difficulty in finding the pricing information?
- What is the pricing structure of our competitors for the same products? What features do they include for a specific price?
- How do customers find our pricing when compared to the competitors?
- Do our products provide value for money to the customers? Does the sales pitch reflect this point?
- Can we restructure the pricing, and how will it affect the revenue?
- Are there any customer segments that have high-value potential but find the current pricing unaffordable? What are the plans for such customers?
- Are we in a situation to offer a basic free plan to encourage customers to try our product before upgrading?
- What promotions can we run to attract more customers?
- Should we target customers based on income, company size, or type of solution to set our product prices?
Brand Reputation Market Research Questions
A brand reputation questionnaire for marketing research gives you information on how well your target market knows about your brand. You can uncover previously unidentified channels to increase brand awareness and find potential customers to promote your brand.
Start by gauging what customers are saying about your brand:
- Which channels receive mentions of our brand? Are these posts positive or negative?
- Do we have a system in place to analyze and monitor these reviews and posts?
- What are the reviews of our brand on different sites? What is the overall impression of our brand in the market?
- How are we currently addressing the negative reviews and complaints? What do our customers think about the handling process?
- What is the impression of our brand in our target market?
- What brand awareness campaigns are our competitors running?
- Is our brand among the top choices of our target customers?
Advertisement & Campaign-Based Questions
These market research questions let you assess the effectiveness of your current value propositions and campaigns. You can channel the customer insights into your advertising strategies to design targeted campaigns for different customer segments to reduce the overall acquisition cost and increase conversions.
Ask the following questions to collect information about the different marketing campaigns are performing:
- What are the best modes to run the advertisement campaigns to reach our target audience?
- What is the estimated lifetime value of customers acquired from current campaigns? Is it higher or lower than the acquisition costs?
- Which campaigns bring the most ROI and why?
- How well do our advertisements present our value proposition to the customers? Do these address customers’ fears and expectations to attract them?
- Are we running A/B tests to improve our online campaigns? How are we gathering data to build the A/B test hypotheses – surveys, heatmaps, eye tracking, etc.?
- What advertisement campaigns do our competitors run?
Importance of Market Research
We mentioned earlier that market research questions provide important data for different operations like product development, marketing campaigns, sales pipeline and more.
But to what extent?
Let’s break it down to individual processes and understand the impact customer insights from your market analysis survey can have on them:
To Know Your Target Market
Understanding your target audience is the fundamental aspect of market research, be it a new target market or existing customers. If you know what marketing research survey questions to ask your target market, you can identify different customer types’ unique traits and preferences.
The data can help you segment the users based on demographic, psychographic, geographic, and other attributes. These include their behavior, purchase preferences, age, location, habits, delights, frustrations, and more.
You can then create various customer personas and fuel your sales strategies to maximize ROI.
Case study – How Avis increased its revenue per customer
Avis, a leading car rental company, was looking to enhance customer experience by offering useful car add-ons like navigation systems, child seats, insurance, etc., to customers with their booking. So, it reached out to AWA Digital to find a way to promote these products and increase their sales.
AWA digital implemented customer research campaigns using targeted surveys to determine which add-ons were popular among the customers and why.
Using these insights, the team added an interstitial pop-up just before the booking page to show relevant add-ons to the customers.
This simple update dramatically increased the sales of add-on items and helped Avis generate more revenue per customer.
Read the entire case study here.
To Plan the Product Roadmap
A product roadmap is a visual representation of the current status of your product and planned updates over time. It shows a high-level summary of planned activities and priorities for different teams to take the product to the next level.
Steve Jobs famously said – “You’ve got to start with the customer experience and work backward to the technology. You can’t start with the technology then try to figure out where to sell it.”
And market research helps to align your product strategies with the customer demand. Using targeted marketing survey questions, you can gauge what new features or functionality customers want to see in your products.
It helps to plan product development strategies based on customers’ consensus to prioritize the ideas that can have the most impact on customers and replace intuition-based approaches with data-backed decisions.
Customers’ demands change with market trends and technological advancements. That’s why your product map also needs to evolve constantly with time to reflect these changes in your product development cycle.
By designing targeted market research questions to ask the customers, you can uncover their expectations to deliver optimal product solutions.
That’s what our next case study demonstrates.
Case study – How customer research drives Twilio’s operations
Twilio, a cloud communications platform places customer discovery and research at the core of their product development strategies. It helps its teams to anticipate customer needs in a constantly changing market.
Lack of time and budget are the two biggest challenges that the company faces in its product development cycle. So, the team uses targeted market research questionnaires for a product to understand the challenges the customers face today and the ones they will face tomorrow.
With an abundance of ideas and no time to test them all, the feedback data from surveys is used to prioritize the hypotheses to run the tests. It makes the process more efficient and effective in producing positive results.
This data-backed approach is used across 18 different teams at Twilio to release new functionality every week and deliver optimal solutions to the clients.
Read the complete case study here.
To Reduce Acquisition Costs
Your customer base consists of multiple customer segments with different preferences and purchase potential. That’s why you cannot sell to everyone and need to find the right audience for your products.
If an acquired customer doesn’t bring in more revenue than it costs to acquire them, it will increase your acquisition costs over time.
We don’t want that, do we?
For example, let’s say you are targeting the entire market population using the same campaign. If your acquisition cost per customer is $300 and you acquire 20 customers from one campaign, you need to make more than $6000 to register profits.
The difficulty is you don’t know about these customers’ purchase behavior and capacity, so you cannot be sure if you will reach your goals. It adds unnecessary risks to your marketing ventures.
But, if you were targeting a specific segment with high income, regular shopping habits, or proven history of brand loyalty, You can obtain better results.
Now, the question is –
How will you separate these potential long-term customers from one-time buyers and high-value targets from other segments?
One way to do this is by building customer personas using the data from the market research survey questions. A buyer persona defines different attributes of a particular customer segment so you can hone in on the right audience to funnel your marketing efforts.
Here’s what a typical persona includes:
- Target regions
- Target demographic (age, marital status, gender)
- Ideal psychographics (hobbies, social channels, activities they indulge in, goals)
- Preferred interaction channels
- Favorite brands and products
- Total revenue till date
- Estimated lifetime value
Once you have a clearer picture of different customers, you can find high-value prospects with the potential to be long-term customers looking for product solutions that your business offers.
You can then design the correct pitch using the market research data to bring in these customers and control the overall acquisition costs.
- Plugin the demographic and psychographic data into CRM software like BIGContacts or Salesforce to convert high-value targets.
- Use your CRM to create segmented lists of prospects based on estimated value, location, current status, and more. Then target these groups individually with personalized value propositions to increase conversion rates.
- Identify their preferred mode of communication and technographic inclinations to find the right opportunities to pitch your product offering at the precise moment.
Even if acquiring and retaining such customers costs more, their overall revenue can balance the acquisition costs to deliver higher profits.
To Design Targeted Marketing Campaigns
By knowing how your target audience behaves and interacts with your business, you can find the exact opportunities to target them with personalized campaigns.
- You can use mail campaigns to target website users with app-exclusive offers to encourage them to download your app and improve app adoption.
- Add in-app broadcast messages about upcoming offers, exclusive membership benefits, and other incentives for new users to push them towards the end of the funnel.
- Create multiple landing pages to target different customer types.
- Design location-based ad campaigns with personalized value propositions based on audience preferences and problems at each location.
Case Study – How Canon’s campaigns generated 700% ROI
AWA digital was tasked by Canon, one of the biggest electronics companies worldwide, to assess and increase the demand for their products in different geographies. So, the AWA team conducted customer research using target market survey questions and discovered the following attributes about customers’ purchase behavior and reservations:
- In some regions, people were reluctant to spend money on a Canon camera as they weren’t sure if Canon was an authoritative brand.
- In other regions, authority was not as important to the users.
Using these insights, AWA optimized the ads campaigns’ messaging for different locations to include what consumers deemed important purchase factors.
With in-depth customer feedback, Canon generated an overall ROI of 700% in all regions using personalized campaigns to target the audience.
To Improve Brand Awareness
Whether you are into soft drinks or not, You probably would have heard of Coca-Cola’s 2011 Share-A-Coke ad. This single campaign put the Coke brand back on the map and reversed the 10-year steady decline in sales in the US.
Coke understood what motivates their customers and delivered a product offering that appealed to the masses to increase its brand equity- the excitement to get a Coca-Cola bottle with their name on it.
How did they do it?
In 2011, Coca-Cola rolled out its share-a-coke campaign in Australia. The company debranded the traditional Coke logo from the bottle and replaced it with the phrase “Share a Coke with” followed by a name.
The campaign used the list of the country’s most popular names (nicknames). The purpose was to make people go out and find the Coke bottle with their name on it and share it with their friends. The campaign was subsequently rolled out in 80 countries.
How did it impact Coca-Cola as a brand:
- In Australia, it’s estimated that the campaign increased Coke’s share by 4% and increased consumption among young adults by 7%.
- #ShareACoke became the top trending hashtag on Twitter globally and received over 1 billion impressions.
- In the USA, the campaign increased Coke’s market share by over 2% and brought 11% more sales compared to the previous year.
It’s not limited to big brands only.
Understanding the customers and placing your product’s value offering along with their habits, lifestyle, and behavior can help you extend your brand’s reach.
Today, there are multiple touchpoints to connect with your customers and map their journey to uncover their issues, motivations, and fears to address in your campaigns.
- Monitor brand mentions on social media and engage with the users to cultivate an online community and promote your brand.
- Reach out to satisfied customers and turn them into your brand ambassadors.
- Use targeted ad campaigns that connect people’s emotions and general behavior to imprint your brand’s image in their minds.
Quick Tips for Writing Awesome Market Research Survey Questions
With the inter-team research complete, you are ready to write your own market research questions to ask your target audience. Keep these general dos and don’ts in mind to ensure that the market survey fulfills the purpose without affecting the data quality or response rate.
Use Mutually Exclusive Response Options
If you are using response anchors with specific ranges like age group or income, check that the options do not overlap. Otherwise, it will produce an irregular data set.
Please specify your age:
In the above example, the respondent lying on either extremity of the given age ranges may get confused on which option to choose. For example, a 28-year-old respondent can choose from both second or third options.
Plus, two different respondents of the same age may select different options, which will skew your demographic data.
You can avoid this confusion by creating mutually exclusive groups as shown below:
Please specify your age.
Always Add A “Not Applicable” Or “Rather Not Say” Option
Since market research questions extract personal information, some respondents may not want to share such details with you. These include questions about age, income, gender, hobbies, social activities, and more.
Forcing such questions on the customers without allowing them to skip can irate them and lead to survey abandonment. That’s why it’s advisable to add the ‘I’d rather not say’ option or make the question optional.
Calculate the Required Sample Size
Sample size plays a vital role in your market research questions to determine the reliability of your response data.
If the response volume is low, the results may not be conclusive to point towards customers’ consensus. On the other hand, a larger sample size than required means a waste of the company’s valuable resources and time.
That’s why it’s important to calculate the required sample size to estimate the number of responses you need for your market research survey questions.
You can use any survey sample size calculator available online to get started. Just fill in the required details to get the required sample size.
For example, to reach a statistical significance of 99%, you need at least 3145 responses to your market research questionnaire.
Consider Adding Incentives
Studies show that Incentivized surveys or questionnaires fetch higher response rates than general surveys.
The incentives encourage customers to invest their time in a survey and get something in return.
It means creating a gated questionnaire for marketing research can help you reach the required sample size quickly. The incentive can be a simple discount code, free shipping coupon, free ebook, or other freebies.
However, there is a possibility that irrelevant respondents may fill the survey randomly just to get to the offer, which may skew the results.
For this, you can use survey screeners or screening questions to filter out the unsuitable respondents.
Avoid Double-Barreled Market Research Questions
A double-barreled question poses two questions into one. The problem with such questions is that the respondent may have opposing views about the two statements in the questions. It makes it harder for them to choose one answer from the options.
“Please rate the [product name] on a scale of 1-10 based on overall quality and price?”
Here, the respondent may find the product quality appreciable while thinking it to be overpriced at the same time. In such a case, they may skip the question or select any option randomly.
You can easily sidestep this hurdle by breaking your double-barreled market research question into two to make it less confusing for the respondents.
If you want to know more about creating flawless surveys, stay away from these survey errors.
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