To start work, release new products,maintaining stable demand, increasing sales, the company needs information about the business environment, competitors and consumers. The purpose of the market research is to obtain as much information as possible about the subjects and objects of the market, external factors and trends for making decisions in the production and sale of goods and services.
Which areas include market analysis
To make a decision on the possibility of entering the market for goods or services, a detailed market research is needed:
- Definition of its type.
- Studying the market structure.
- The analysis of a conjuncture.
- Selection of target segments.
- Forecast of sales volumes.
If the market entry has already taken place, the enterprisesuccessfully works and brings profit, regular market research is still necessary. It may be incomplete, and include only the information that is of interest at the moment, which will preserve and strengthen positions, provide for possible changes in demand.
Determining the type of the market and its structure
At the very beginning of the market research of services or goods, you need to determine the type of market:
- local, national or world;
- monopolistic, oligopolistic, with free competition;
- market of goods, services, raw materials, labor, capital, innovation, securities;
- wholesale or retail.
- consumer or producer market; in the first case, the positions of buyers are stronger than those of sellers, in the second case, on the contrary;
- the market of consumers or enterprises (buyers are firms);
- closed or open.
In addition to determining the type of market, it is also necessary to characterize it. The market can be developing or fading, limited by legal norms or economic conditions.
The next step is to identify the structuremarket, the division of consumers into segments, the study of the needs of individual groups. Market research at this stage aims to prepare information to identify the most attractive segments for a particular product or service.
Analysis of conjuncture
The study of the market of goods (services) necessarily includes the study of the conjuncture. This work consists in the definition and analysis:
- market indicators;
- market shares held by different enterprises;
- demand indicators for a product or service;
- indicators of supply, production;
The assessment of the conjuncture is not limited to studyinginternal features of the market. For marketing it is important to determine how conditions will change. Therefore, market research includes an analysis of external factors: political, economic, cultural, social situation in the country, world trends in similar markets, new technologies, the state of the labor market, the legislative framework.
It is extremely difficult to assess the influence of external factors and their intensity. For this, it is necessary to determine the set of the most important indicators and to consider their influence on the market under study.
Identification of target segments
After the segmentation of the market and the study of its conjuncture, it is time to select the target groups of consumers. To determine the attractiveness of a particular segment, there are such criteria:
- intensity of competition;
- ease, accessibility of attracting customers;
- possibility of impact;
- segment size;
- similarity of consumers from this group;
- the growth rate of the number of representatives of the segment.
Target segments can be several. Each firm seeks to increase sales, but there is a limit to opportunities. To determine the optimal number of segments that an enterprise can serve, two methods of mastering the market are used:
- Concentrated method involves the phased development of segments.
- Dispersive method consists in trying to master the entire market of goods or services and further abandon unpromising segments.
The market research assumes a regular analysis of the developed segments, potential customers already interested in the goods and undeveloped "territories".
The market research allows to determine,what competitive advantages there are or may be for a given product or service. Positioning means having to find your place in a market where similar or similar products are already sold.
Research, analysis and the most professionalmarketing will not help make the goods more attractive in the eyes of the consumer, if he does not meet their needs. And they grow and change, therefore, it is necessary to respond to these changes in time, to ensure that the competitiveness of the product in the market does not decrease.
Positioning can take place in one of two directions:
- filling the market niche, the needs of which are not satisfied by competitors;
- Entering the market with the same or very close to one of the competitors advantages.
Forecast of sales volume
The study of commodity markets will be incomplete withoutdetermination of forecast indicators of market development and sales volumes of a particular enterprise. It is the forecast that is the guide for decision-making. The needs and desires of consumers, the emergence of new products on the market, the actions of competitors, external factors - all this is in constant flux and changes the conditions on the market.
If there is no forecast in time and not acceptedappropriate solutions, then market research will become useless. In the long term and in business planning, three forecasts are made at once: optimistic, most likely and pessimistic. For a complete picture, it is possible to study the influence of certain factors on the forecast indicators. For example, if you strengthen the sales system, how much money and time it will take and how this will help increase sales and profits.
The forecast of sales volumes is the final stage of market research and helps to properly organize financial flows, production process, marketing activities.