Whether you’re a startup or a company that’s been in business for years, choosing a market research company is one of the most important decisions you’ll ever make. Of course, you can do quite a bit of research on your own, but outsourcing your market research has several benefits.
First, you can count on the knowledge and deep expertise that a research firm can bring to the table. You’ll get data that can be converted into actionable insights to help your decision-making. In addition, the cost of hiring a research firm is likely to be much less than the cost of setting up, and running your own research team in-house.
While outsourcing your market research is often a good idea, it can be tricky knowing which research firm to pick. Here are some of the key things you should look out for in choosing the right one for your company.
Credentials and Experience
The first question you should ask is whether the research firm you’re considering has the right credentials and expertise to get the job done. Make sure they are appropriately licensed to work in the county or state you’re in.
Also, find out about their track record. What have they accomplished in their years of being in business? Which companies has the research firm worked for and what results have they achieved? Getting the answers to these questions will give you a clear idea of whether the research company will be a good fit for your needs.
Talent and Expertise
Full service research firms often offer a full range of services. Niche companies, however, may only focus on a certain kind of research. For instance, some companies focus exclusively on consumer behaviour while others may focus on wider marketing trends.
Does the research company you are considering have subject matter experts who can design, organise and execute the kind of research you are looking for? What is the level of experience of the people on their team? These are important questions to ask because a research firm is only as good as the human resources they have available.
In most cases, particularly, with statewide or nationwide surveys, research firms outsource their work to freelancers or contract workers. It’s crucial that you understand their hiring processes to understand how they recruit their talent.
From onboarding to delivery of results, the market research firm you choose should offer a seamless workflow. Ideally, you should have an account manager who would work with you, update you on progress, and make sure that your research project is well-executed on time.
In addition, they should use modern software and technologies to streamline their workflow. For instance, you should expect a top research company to use a tool like capi software for data collection.
Another important consideration is the cost involved in hiring a market research firm. You should have a flexible budget to work with. Remember, your costs may differ based on the suite of services you choose. That’s why you should be clear on exactly why you need the market research and how the insights from the research might affect your decisions and your bottom line.
Be careful not to opt for a firm simply because of their low prices. Budget services may be tempting, but may not yield any useful results in the long run.
Prepare To Use the Research
Before you get the research results, make sure your company is ready to use the results you get. While not every research result is actionable, it can inform your next steps. For example, research results can point out the need to do further research. Whatever the case, put your market research findings to good use with a great market research company by your side to take your company to the next level of success.