Secondary Research


What is Secondary Research?

Secondary research is a technique that uses existing data. It is also known as “desk research.” It includes material published in research papers and other such documents. Secondary research is much cheaper than primary methods. With primary research organizations or businesses must collect data first hand. They can also use a third party to gather information on their behalf.

Companies perform secondary research to assess low-cost, uncomplicated, and quick knowledge. It clarifies the research question. It also helps align the focus of primary research on a larger scale. There are two types of secondary analysis. These are internal and external secondary data. The first type consists of information gathered within the researcher’s firm. Researchers compile the second type outside of their respective companies.

Why is Secondary Research Important?

Primary market research will always have priority over its secondary counterpart. However, many times, secondary market research is all that a company needs. It paves the way for primary research. It helps companies to analyze the external market environment. Companies can also use it to identify which type of customers buy their products, and whom to target. It gives insight into consumer information. It also helps companies to attract and keep customers.

How is Secondary Research Important?

  • It enables managers to make better-informed decisions. Secondary research helps managers to understand consumer needs better. It thus aids them in creating a more impactful marketing plan. It allows for more informed strategizing and decision-making. The process thus increases the chance of success of a company’s marketing efforts.
  • It helps managers to identify new opportunities. It also helps them to test existing markets. They can use it to segment and analyze the market. They can also use it to choose the best target market. They can examine and test the company’s performance and reputation. Secondary research can help with product positioning, and with new product development.
  • It gives managers more perspectives. Secondary research material is available to the public. Many people review the information. Government material, the internet, and libraries are all excellent sources for secondary research. The data is extensive and may help to cover several issues.
  • It helps companies save money. Researchers don’t have to go through the expense of designing and implementing a study. Secondary research reuses data collected earlier. Thus, it is cheaper to compile than primary methods. The challenge with reusing data is that it might not be in the form that the client or the market researcher needs.
  • It helps companies save time. It doesn’t take long to find a credible source with factual information. It’s easy to find reports compiled by an industry leader or government agency. A researcher can find scholarly articles and a host of other resources on the internet. Companies should consider sources that have offered their research for public use.
  • It helps provide context. Many firms don’t consider what their focus should be when it comes to market research. These companies thus need to do some inner exploration. This is one reason why some primary market research companies offer secondary analysis. It is more cost-effective and faster. It also helps clients to build the framework for their primary research efforts.

Secondary research in some emerging markets such as China remains limited. These limitations persist despite their gains in managerial, economic, and policy relevance. This dearth of information may be an opportunity for researchers. They can use other creative methods to gather data. Primary research is inexpensive in developing markets. Researchers can thus use primary methods to provide context.

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