B2B Market Research Explained

B2B market research is an abbreviation of ‘business to business’ research and relates to market research and business intelligence that is carried out by organisations who sell to, or support, other businesses. Unlike consumer or customer research, B2B research is not carried out amongst  members of the public in the same way that respondents to consumer research are.

There is a wide range and diversity of B2B market research conducted. Such research can include; acquisition and due diligence, market entry and International research, customer satisfaction and customer service surveys, employee surveys, supply chain and distributor research. Marketers will also use qualitative B2B market research for brand development and to help optimise advertising and communications.

Often small samples, time pressures and more complex/technical projects makes business research more demanding than consumer and as a result tends to be more costly. The typical research methods and processes adopted by B2B market research companies, includes:

Telephone interviewing (using highly trained interviewers who can readily discuss more technical or business issues)

Face to face qualitative depths or focus groups for in-depth exploratory studies

Desk research and customer/market and competitive intelligence

Online and email surveys (although response rates amongst businesses can be low unless using a dedicated Business panel)

The Market Research Society (MRS) have an offshoot for B2B and business research – Business Intelligence Group (BIG).

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