Consumer market research is the process of gathering data on a consumer goods market (personal-use goods and services such as toothpaste or retail sales). This includes information on the current and potential customers, as well as the competitive landscape of the market.
Primary research involves collecting data from the source (i.e. consumers) such as conducting surveys or focus groups. It can be very targeted, useful, time consuming, labor-intensive, and expensive.
Secondary research involves using data that has already been collected (e.g. statistics or market research reports). Because you do not control how or what data is collected, there may be times where you cannot find the exact type of information you want from secondary sources.
You can kind of think of it as primary research is watching a movie whereas secondary research is reading a review of the movie.
This guide will show you some secondary sources for consumer market research.
Who Collects This Data?
|Cost of data||Who collects it?||How do they get it?||Examples|
|Free or $
||Government, NGOs||Surveys, legal requirements||
Census, UN, International Trade Administration
|Free or $
||Regulatory agencies||Reporting requirements||National Credit Union Administration
||Trade associations||Member surveys, government data, news||Telecommunications Industry Association
||Private market research firms||Government data, surveys of customers and manufacturers, news||BCC Research, Frost & Sullivan, Mintel, Nielsen, Gartner
Note that there may be additional information resources depending upon the market or industry you are targeting. Feel free to email us to find out more.
If you have spent some time searching on the internet for market data, you may have come across some market research reports that will seemingly address all your research needs, however they tend to cost thousands of dollars. These reports are costly because market research can be very labor intensive work. Cornell is fortunate enough to have access to some market research reports via the following databases:
|These reports are only to be used for academic purposes.|