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10 Types of Market Research: Which does your business need

Are you launching a new product? Or maybe it is an entirely new business you are about to put on the market? If your goal is to learn more about your target audience in order to make the right product/service choice to sell, market research is what you need.

With well-built market research, you can learn from consumers and clients, understand what their needs and likes are. With the proper data in hand, you can offer the solution the audience is looking for.

MightyForms has prepared this guide so you can define which type of market research is the most appropriate to do at the right moment you need it. And there are 10 types for you to choose from or even to mix and build a larger range of data.

What is Market Research?

Market Research is a technique that helps you to collect precise and in-depth data about your target audience, enabling you to build the most fitting buyer personas and set up better marketing campaigns. Not only the marketing approach can be benefited by market research, but your entire product/service offering can be enhanced by the results of the research. All because with the data in hand you can offer quality products and/or services that are also what your audience desires and needs.

what is market research infographic _MightyForms

Let’s say you own a gym. With market research, you can see what kind of services you can offer, like classes with specific sports practices, or even if you can start to sell sport and health-related products. And since you have the results of your market research, you can be sure that your audience and customers are willing to enjoy your new offers and experiences.

So, you use market research to get to know your audience - what they want to and need - and, consequently, improve your business by offering the solution they want.

Why is Market Research so Important for business growth?

Market research, when well made, can tell you where your weaknesses and strengths are. This means you can keep improving on your strengths, and changing what needs to be changed. And all by listening to your customers and prospects, those who actually matter.

You can easily identify, by results analysis, how your customer experience is doing, if your product and brand need more social and environmental awareness, and if your prices are fair to what you’re offering plus your target audience expectations and purchasing power. And these are just a few examples of what type of finds you can have from market research.

Learn how to build the perfect research, using MightyForms free market research templates, and identify which of one of 10 types your business can be benefited from.

What types of data are used in market research

In market research you’ll have some key questions to ask that will give you the full picture about your interviewee and their relation with your brand and product.

- Who are they?

- What do they do?

- Do they ever purchase a similar product?

- How do they use similar products?

- What kind of problem are they trying to solve?

- What are their goals with this type of product?

Primary and Secondary information

There are two main methods of how to conduct research and how you’ll collect the data - the primary data and the secondary data.

market research methods infographic_ primary vs secondary data _MightyForms

Primary data is when you collect and conduct the research yourself, or hire someone to do it for you. It is first-handed information about your customers and audience in general. 

Secondary data is when you use existing research to collect data, like government or ONGs reports where you gather information and adapt to your business uses. Any data in a public record is a secondary type of information.

With these two apart, let’s dive into the 10 types of market research that will help you gather precise information to your business growth.

10 Types of Market Research

You already know the importance of having market research when launching a new product, resource, or even a new business. You can’t start an enterprise without every single data you can collect about the target audience, since that information is going to work as your guide and tell you what people actually need, so you can bring a solution to your customers.

Now is time to learn about 10 types of market research, how you can apply each of them into your business, and when you can use them.

But, before starting with our list, let’s talk about the two main types of data you’ll collect - the primary and the secondary data.

1. Online survey

One of the most common tactics for gathering insights from customers, online surveys are also practical to build, conduct and analyze the results. When building a survey you can create both open and closed-ended questions. The point here is to get the most detailed data possible.

You can embed your survey to your website page or to an email sent to your leads. You can even share it on social media, as long as it is well promoted to grab people’s attention to your survey.

Watch over your tone and word choices, since a good question, built carefully, conducts precise answers, with analyzable data. And that’s what you need in order to conduct market research that brings results and helps you with your new product or new brand.

Types of Market Research - Survey - infographic _ MightyForms

When to use it:

Truth be told - we are online now. The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic has changed how we interact and do business. But that's good news for you since you don’t have to settle for local audiences only, now you can reach the world, promoting your business everywhere, using automatic translations to reach out to an international audience. That said, you can use online market research when launching your product overseas, as an example, and get to know more about your new audience. If you want to focus on a local audience, use it when you are about to launch a new version of your product, to be sure that it’s the proper moment. Or even can use it when launching a completely new business, to start on the right foot, and capture your target audience’s attention from the beginning.

How to use it:

Take advantage of how versatile a survey is, especially an online conducted one. Don’t be intrusive in your questions, remember to keep the focus on what your audience expects from a business like yours. It’s always best to keep surveys short, but if you really need qualitative data, consider adding an incentive at the end of the survey. 

2. In-depth Interviews

Interviews can be conducted both in-person and by phone. When you choose to conduct an interview you can access other elements that only the answers, like the voice intonation, and from an in-person interview you can even use as data any physical reactions, like smiles or a scowl. So, even if your interviewee is the kind of a few words, you still can get insightful details about their opinion and feelings on your product and idea. 

But, when doing interviews you can’t go unprepared only because you can capture their non-verbal answers. Like online surveys, you must have pre-handed questions and can improvise as it fits each situation. Your questions must be well thought out and related to your industry and product offering.

Types of Market Research - In-depth interviews - infographic_ MightyForms

When to use it:

In-depth interviews, both by phone or in-person, can be made when you already know who your audience is, which gives you the chance to select interviewees carefully and that can be sure will answer your questions since they have previous knowledge on the subject. If you don’t know your audience yet, it can be a little difficult to select participants for your market research interviewees. But it is not impossible, it all depends on what you’re selling. Let’s say you’re selling a new game, interviewing people that don’t like games can give you a false response of how your product will be perceived. So, try always to select participants that can give you a real insight into your product.

How to use it:

Take advantage of this opportunity to go beyond, responding to your interviewee’s cues. If they respond to a question with a frown face, if it is an in-person interview, you can already know that what you’ve asked is not pleasing them, therefore, you can take a new direction with your interview, and make notes of any reaction you can capture during the interview. 

3. Focus Groups

A focus group research is when you select a group of people, based on key criteria like demographic or personal interests, and a moderator starts with key questions and analyzes people’s interactions with each other, and their reaction, going beyond answers given by the participants.

Types of Market Research - Focus Groups - infographic_ MightyForms

When to use it:

A red flag for this type of research: if you’re new to market research, you better avoid group research. That’s because of a few factors, like the cost to do it properly can be expensive, and you can have participants that go along with the majority, ignoring their own opinion on the subject. Plus, it can be tricky to conduct a group through the research. So, prefer to use it when you have a good budget, and also when you can be assured that you have a qualified moderator. This can help make sure your research is airtight, since you can end up with a topic completely different from the one you have anticipated, which will make you have to improvise to keep the quality of your research, making this kind of research one of the hardest.

How to use it:

To do market research using focus groups you must first select a group of people following a key segmentation according to who is your target audience. If you’re selling a videogame it will be more convenient to have gamers or people that know and like video games than people who have never played a video game in their life, just to give an example. With a group selected, you’ll need a good moderator to give the direction and to make the observations, and analyze the group. 

4. Social Media

Marketers already know the importance and how social media can be an ally in the pursuit of new clients, and how they also bring brand awareness and are great for selling products and services. So, why not use social media for your market research as well? Social media is a big meeting point nowadays since we are doing most of our activities online. And there is no perspective of our lives being 100% offline again in the near future. So, Social Media is one of the biggest places to invest in capturing new clients and placing your market research. 

Types of Market Research - Social Media - infographic_ MightyForms

When to use it:

You can use social media market research when you want to collect data that has no interference from a moderator or other people, which means you’ll gather honest and solo information and opinion from each participant. You can also prefer this type of research when you have a not-so-big budget since you can get feedback organically.

How to use it:

Since people are using social media to express their opinion organically, you can use this opportunity to create a poll or survey where you’ll collect people’s real opinions and perspectives about your product and business. You can use MightyForms forms shared in your business social media accounts to collect more responses and participants to your market research. The good part is that you’re reaching for a target audience, the downside is that if you don’t have many followers or if your tags are not much searched, you may not have the number of responses you need for careful and detailed analysis.

5. Observation

The observation method is when you watch people while they use your product, and make notes and observations on their behavior. The advantage of this type of research is that you can actually see how people will use your product, which can sometimes be in a way you never expected. This is a great method since you’re seeing real people with your product, removing the hypothetical factor.

The downside is that you can’t know what people are thinking, so, to overpass this, we suggest a quick survey after the observation test.

Types of Market Research - observation - infographic_ MightyForms

When to use it:

Observation is a type of market research that is great for when you have a product that people can interact with, so you can observe them during such interaction. But it doesn’t limit only to products. If you’re offering a service, like MightyForms, you can create an analysis on how people use your service and be open to new market opportunities by the data collection. MightyForms is a form builder and intake platform, but people can give it multiple uses, and observation research can tell us all these new uses, allowing us to make our services better.

How to use it:

You must be careful when doing an observation so you won’t be intrusive. Try to observe from a distance and without interference, to make sure you can have an analysis that represents the reality of how your product is perceived and used. Trust tools that keep personal identifiable information private, such as Google Analytics.

6. Public sources

Unlike what we’ve been talking about so far (that are primary information types of research), the public source type of market research is a secondary source of data. Public sources can be governmental websites and documents, public libraries, educational institutes, and so on. But it can also be information from private institutions, like commercial sources, such as banks and corporations. 

Types of Market Research - Public Sources - infographic_ MightyForms

When to use it:

You can use public sources as your market research as long as you are certain that such data can be applied to your business without any loss of information. 

How to use it:

The internet is, again, your best friend here. Use it to find any information you need to complete your research. If you look carefully, you’ll find any data you may need. And the best part is that a lot of reports and research are available for free. But you can always buy or make a subscription if that is the case. 

7. Brand awareness

A brand awareness type of research is what tells you how much your target audience knows and recognizes about your business. You can have a closer insight into what your audience relates to your product and brand too. Then you redirect your campaigns to better fit your results, both in order to change how your company is perceived and to reinforce the idea already existent. 

Types of Market Research - Brand awareness - infographic_ MightyForms

When to use it:

If you want to know how well people know about your business you can have this type of market research done to give you all the answers you need. You can use it as well to discover where your strengths and weaknesses are. 

How to use it:

Make each step of your research carefully. You can conduct interviews, or even send a survey to your leads in an email. Remember that your questions must be thought through and built in a way that will guide your respondents, but won’t induce them, since you want their clear and honest opinion. You can always use a Likert scale question to identify your consumers’ emotions towards your business. Be sure to include questions that help determine how your business is valued, are you considered cheap or expensive? Do people often search for alternatives? Which ones? And so on.

8. Product development

Launching a new product? Or want to boost the one you already have? Doing product development market research is the way to find out what you need to improve about your products and also how your target audience interacts, uses, and needs your product.

Types of Market Research - product development - infographic_ MightyForms

When to use it:

Do you know that every year 95% of new products fail? So, how to succeed and don’t be part of these statistics? Doing product development research is one way that can help you. That’s because you’re listening to those who matter: your clients and prospects. So, even if you believe that you have a genius idea, an “Eureka!” moment can’t make your business successful alone. You must have clients and people interested in spending their money on your bright and innovative new product. Therefore, use wisely this resource and improve your product until it becomes something people would purchase.

How to use it:

Consider giving away a free sample to a small group of your audience. You can implement other market research strategies to determine the potential of a new product, but the focus is now less on breaking down your audience into demographics, and more on understanding their reaction and satisfaction with the product.

9. Customer satisfaction

To delight your audience you must first know the ways to do so. Conducting customer satisfaction research can give you a clear path into the pursuit of customer delight. Customer satisfaction market research is a type of research that gives you insight into the experience your customers have when using your product. Does your product meet customer expectations? Does it fulfill its purpose? These are a few questions that customer satisfaction research tries to give you.

Types of Market Research - Customer satisfaction - infographic_ MightyForms

When to use it:

About 90% of Americans say that customer experience is an important factor when deciding to do business with a company. For you, this means that you must improve your customer experience to reach high customer satisfaction. With that said, remember to conduct customer satisfaction research anytime you’re not sure about how well your product and brand are doing. This type of research is a strong thermometer to tell you about your business performance. Use it to increase your knowledge about your customers and your product itself.

How to use it:

Likert scale surveys or even NPS® surveys can let you know easily about your consumer feelings, and help you improve your customer experience and product, to meet the demand and expectations of your target audience.

10. Campaign research

Our last type of market research is one where you revisit past campaigns in order to discover what worked before and what didn’t. How has your audience received each of your campaigns? This is the most important question here, and answering it will help you to be better prepared for future campaigns. You must carefully analyze how each of your campaigns was received by your target audience and then reach the results that will tell you what you can do again, what needs to be improved and what certainly should never be done again. 

Types of Market Research - Campaign research - infographic_ MightyForms

When to use it:

When you have a short time, and/or budget, this is a quick solution to improve your product. This type of market research depends entirely on your perception of how your business was received by leads and prospects during previous campaigns.

How to use it:

To collect results from your campaign’s market research you can count on tools you may already be using (Google Analytics tracks user flow before conversion to help you see which channels assisted in a conversion), track performance on the platforms that you ran the campaign (ads that get high impressions and less than 2% engagement are a good example), or ask users how they first heard about the campaign. 

Templates for a good Market Research Survey

As you may have noticed, surveys are the easiest and also quickest way to make a good market research. For that, you can count on MightyForms to create beautiful and automated surveys, both from scratch and from a template. Here you have 3 templates to be inspired by and use in your market research surveys.

Market Research Survey

Market Research Survey template - MightyForms

Collect all data you need for your new business or product. Get to know more about people’s interests so you can focus on improving your product to attend to their needs and likes.


Product Survey Form

Product Survey Form template - MightyForms

Learn more about your product from the opinion of your customers. Discover what draws people in and what they dislike about your product and brand.


Product Satisfaction Survey Form

Product Satisfaction Survey Form template MightyForms

This is a great example to learn more about why and how your customers are reaching your product and learning more about your brand. And is also a great example that helps you gather necessary data to improve your business and customer experience.

Use MightyForms's powerful forms to learn more about your target audience and customers, use all this data in your business favor and keep sustainable growth. Use these types of research to improve your business, or even to start a new one. You can mix them and have a bigger picture of your target audience’s needs and wants.


Heloise Montini

Heloise Montini is a journalist and SEO specialist. She writes about travel, news, and, as a hobby, creative writing. She is always available for new challenges and learning.