Business Research

Starting a business requires that you have a strong understanding of your customer, product or service, competition, and industry.

Market Research is the term used by businesses when they collect and analyze the above information. Market research is like taking a car for a test drive before you buy it. It helps you to figure out whether your business idea could be successful!

Review the information listed below to determine what to know before you start your business. Market research will help you answer many of these questions.

1. Customers

Are your customers the general public or are they other businesses?

General Public

  • gender?
  • geographic location?
  • income?
  • Occupation?
  • hobbies/leisure activities?

Other Businesses

  • which industry?
  • size of the business?
  • sales levels?
  • how many employees?
  • geographic location?
  • legal form of business?
  • other prominent features?

2. Products/Service

What are the products and/or services that your business will provide?

What makes the products or services you provide unique or different?

How much will you charge?

Why will customers choose you over your competition?

3. Competition

How many competitors are in your market area?

List your five main competitors. Identify their:

  • location
  • size
  • time in business
  • strengths
  • weaknesses

4. Industry

  • what industry are you in?
  • what are the biggest trends in your industry?
  • what do the "experts" say will happen in your industry over the next 3 - 5 years?
  • are there any regulations, legislation or licensing requirements that will affect your business (consider both the present and the future)?
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