Page 4: Secondary market research
Secondary research is sometimes known as ‘desk research’. This research draws on material that has been collected by another organisation to provide market information. Secondary research data provides a fact based overview of the market. Examples of secondary research include:
- Government census data – the census is conducted every 10 years across the UK and brings together data on factors such as the number of people, their ages and occupations in a location.
- Geo-demographic data – collected by specialist agencies, this segmentation tool profiles consumers based on their lifestage (e.g. marital status, number of children) and their lifestyle (e.g. newspapers read, leisure activities, TV programmes watched).
- Commercial market research reports – prepared by research experts, these provide estimates of the size (volume of sales) in each product or market category and market share by operators within these sectors. At JD this information is invaluable when assessing new product markets (e.g. outdoors) or international opportunities (e.g. France and Spain).
However, there are drawbacks with any form of market research. It costs money to collect and analyse large amounts of information and the results are not always definitive. Numerical data might be biased, particularly if the sample size is too small. Focus groups may be skewed if one member of a focus group is too dominant and stops others from voicing their opinions.