Page 3: Secondary research
Secondary research draws on information which already exists. Examples include reports by market research firms or sales data within a company.
Sources of secondary data include British Council country reports and government reports. Some of the best secondary data is expensive to purchase. This is because it has been collected for commercial purposes by specialist market research companies. Some research is gathered by industry sources. It is available to businesses in return for an annual fee. This is termed 'syndicated research'.
Secondary research is quicker and easier to collect. Its weakness, however, is that it may not have been collected for the specific purposes required. In this case, the secondary research was not directly related to how Zurich could differentiate itself from its competitors.
In researching the insurance market, Zurich was able to make use of some secondary data about the industry. For example, it used a study produced by the market research company Nielsen. The data showed that 61% of internet users rely on online communities to recommend products and services.
This suggested that Zurich's website needed to change to become a communication vehicle for HelpPoint. Secondary research therefore provided valuable data to enhance Zurich's own primary research.