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Customer research: Behavior patterns

Are you interested in improving your understanding of how your customers think? Do you have an efficient customer research system that provides useful data for decision-making?

customer researchIn today’s networked world, customers are increasingly expressing themselves online. Videos, message boards, forums, blogs and social media sites are some of the opportunities customers have to share their opinions, likes and dislikes about the products and services they use. Smart business people never assume they know what their customers want, especially when developing a new product or service. They find creative ways to conduct customer research that taps into the readily available and specific data about behavior patterns and motivations—their customers’ needs, ideas, preferences and suggestions for the products they use and will want in the future.

Customer research: Business implications

Good customer research can greatly benefit your business in several ways. Today, every business has recognized the importance of this and has taken the necessary steps to integrate it into their strategic decision-making process. In a highly competitive marketplace, you need solid consumer research data to identify your market position relative to your competitors and to clearly articulate the customers’ view points, needs and expectations.

With effective customer research you can create profiles of customer subgroups by identifying, for example, customer similarities and differences regarding needs, wants or behaviors. Careful and thorough analysis of profiles can contribute to the creation of products and services that more closely meet customer expectations.

Effective consumer research also helps mobilize resources and increase collaboration by providing focus and direction to your product design teams and other stakeholders. For example, using customer feedback management systems as a basis for customer research can provide valuable data for product design and development. This means launching new products that have high market acceptance and success rates. Consumer data also helps you analyze the elements that have a negative and positive impact on your products. By leveraging the positive and taking corrective action on the negative you can increase ROI and minimize business risk.

Customer research: Take action with OneDesk

These tips show you how to use OneDesk’s suite of social collaboration tools to conduct actionable customer research:

Select the right customer research methodology.
Companies often spend countless hours collecting data via surveys, focus-groups and questionnaires that cannot be easily or effectively aggregated or is not useful for affecting change. For instance surveys may not provide a complete picture on customer needs—data may identify customer likes and dislikes but will not provide indications as to what motivates behavior or decisions. If you need actionable data that will allow you to tailor your products and services, you need to be going directly to the source, your customers. Consumer research methodologies, such as, discussion forums, voting polls and feedback tools, ‘open conversations’ allowing you to truly hear the voice of the customer and generate actionable insights for improved development of products and services.

Validate, analyze and manage customer ideas.
Once you have collected this data, you then realistically, need to figure out which customer information, ideas and opinions will be useful to the development process.

Naturally, customers will have many different ideas of how to improve or enhance your products and services. However, it is important that you chose the items that align with your overall corporate strategies and business objectives. OneDesk provides the methodology to gather insight from the customer portal, and then helps you rank and prioritize which items to implement.

Do something with the customer research…take action!
It’s one thing to use customer insight to identify your strengths and weaknesses, but it another thing to actually take action to effect change and make improvements that are profitable. For example, feedback that is part of consumer data is only useful when it is fully integrated early in all phases of the product development process.

OneDesk’s collaboration tools make it easy for your team to listen to the voice of the customer, capture their feedback, manage it and integrate it into the process to affect real change. OneDesk also helps keep customers, partners and employees stay on the same page throughout the process.

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