Market research is any organized effort to gather information about markets or customers. It is a very important component of business strategy. The term is commonly interchanged with marketing research; however, expert practitioners may wish to draw a distinction, in that marketing research is concerned specifically about marketing processes, while market research is concerned specifically with markets.
Market research,as defined by the ICC/ESOMAR International Code on Market and Social Research, includes social and opinion research, [and] is the systematic gathering and interpretation of information about individuals or organizations using statistical and analytical methods and techniques of the applied social sciences to gain insight or support decision making.
Market research began to be conceptualized and put into formal practice during the 1920s, as an offshoot of the advertising boom of the Golden Age of radio in the United States. Advertisers began to realize the significance of demographics revealed by sponsorship of different radio programs,
 Market research for business/planning
Market research is for discovering what people want, need, or believe. It can also involve discovering how they act. Once that research is completed, it can be used to determine how to market your product.
Questionnaires and focus group discussion surveys are some of the instruments for market research.
For starting up a business, there are some important things:
Through Market information one can know the prices of the different commodities in the market, as well as the supply and demand situation. Information about the markets can be obtained from different sources, varieties and formats, as well as the sources and varieties that have to be obtained to make the business work.
Market segmentation is the division of the market or population into subgroups with similar motivations. It is widely used for segmenting on geographic differences, personality differences, demographic differences, technographic differences, use of product differences, psychographic differences and gender differences.
Market trends are the upward or downward movement of a market, during a period of time. The market size is more difficult to estimate if one is starting with something completely new. In this case, you will have to derive the figures from the number of potential customers, or customer segments. [Ilar 1998]
Besides information about the target market, one also needs information about one's competitors, customers, products, etc. Lastly, you need to measure marketing effectiveness. A few techniques are:
 Financial performance
 Top 9 of the Market Research Sector 2009
 See also
- ^ McQuarrie, Edward (2005), The market research toolbox: a concise guide for beginners (2nd ed.), SAGE, ISBN 9781412913195, http://books.google.com/?id=qYW8vE0nx4gC&printsec=frontcover&dq=%22market+research%22&q=%22gather%20information%20about%22
- ^ McDonald, Malcolm (2007), Marketing Plans (6th ed.), Oxford, England: Butterworth-Heinemann, ISBN 978-0750683869, http://books.google.com/?id=os0K20MsepoC&pg=PA364&dq=%22market+research+vs.+marketing+research%22&q=
- ^ ICC/ESOMAR (2008), International Code on Market and Social Research. ICC/ESOMAR Amsterdam, the Netherlands, 4th ed. http://www.esomar.org/uploads/pdf/professional-standards/ICCESOMAR_Code_English_.pdf|
- ^ Google News results for "market research", 1900-1929., Google, 2009, http://news.google.com/archivesearch?as_user_ldate=1900&as_user_hdate=1929&q=%22market+research%22&num=100&scoring=a&hl=en&ned=us&um=1&q=%22market+research%22&lnav=od&btnG=Go
- Bradley, Nigel Marketing Research. Tools and Techniques.Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2007 ISBN 0-19-928196-3 ISBN 978-0-19-928196-1
- Marder, Eric The Laws of Choice'Predicting Customer Behavior (The Free Press division of Simon and Schuster, 1997. ISBN 0-684-83545-2
- Visha Consultants (nd)Market Research, Marketing Research. Tools and Techniques.
- Young, Charles E, The Advertising Handbook, Ideas in Flight, Seattle, WA, April 2005. ISBN 0-9765574-0-1
- Kotler, Philip and Armstrong, Gary Principles of Marketing Pearson, Prentice Hall, New Jersey, 2007 ISBN 978-0-13-239002-6, ISBN 0-13-239002-7
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