Market Research Made Easy

Knowledge is power. Knowing what your customers want and what your competitors are up to is so important if you want your business to be competitive. As your time as a business owner is often limited, we have put together some simple suggestions for keeping your finger on the pulse when it comes to what your customers want and mastering market knowledge.

 
Online

With so many businesses in the craft industry now having an online presence, the internet is an easy way to keep tabs on competitor activity. What type of products are they offering (or not)? From what brands and at what prices? What information do they provide? What are their opening times and do they deliver?

Looking at prominent online sellers and, if you have a physical shop, local competitors; will give you an insight into customer expectations and help guide your business strategy in terms of how you will compete. Can you be more competitive on price? Alternatively is there a gap in the market for more premium products or could you compete through quality of service or product range? Check competitor sites regularly to stay on top of changing trends.
 


Social media

Social media is a fantastic way to build a more detailed picture of your customer profile. Experiment with different posts and shares to see what your customers and followers engage with and make friends with your customers to get a better sense of who they are outside sewing.

This can also be a useful space to test customer responses to new products and fabrics which may help inform your future purchasing and shop display tactics. Furthermore, your social media channels can also provide a space for your customers to provide you with direct feedback and even act as a community space for them to talk to each other.

Following businesses similar to your own is a great way to keep tabs on what they are offering and by looking at reactions to these posts you can build an even bigger picture of what consumers like, while getting further tips on what works (or doesn’t work on social media).

 

Visiting Shows

It’s always worth getting a perspective from the other side of the counter but also checking out what the completion are offering. While going into shops as a customer can be a useful way to see things through your customer’s eyes, attending a consumer show offers a rich tapestry of information with an abundance of retailers in attendance. Check out how the different stands are laid out, what products and designs they are offering, if there is anything new in the market, how it is presented and at what prices as well as how visitors are responding to different displays and products.

 

Customer Feedback

Never underestimate the simple value of listening to your customers. From customer feedback you can learn what they like, what they value, what they do and much more. Customer feedback can highlight areas for improvement, or gaps in your product range.

Encourage your customers to share their feedback and your staff to pass on feedback they receive. Customers may not always volunteer detailed feedback so try asking specific questions or maybe adopting a conversational approach.