An introduction to the Kano Analysis model and why it is used in modern day market research.

Dr Noriaki Kano, an expert and lecturer in the field of quality management laid the foundation for the Kano method in the 1970s and 1980s. his efforts worked to show how improving or adding certain types of product attributes and excluding others can reliably produce higher levels of customer satisfaction.

It’s a useful technique for deciding which features you want to include in a product or service. It helps you break away from a profit which minimalizes the mind-set that says you’ve got to have as many features as possible in a product and helps you think more subtly about the features you include.

When the Kano model is used in surveys and interviews, design teams have a framework to determine and prioritize which product attributes are more important to the customer.

It is found that the Kano analysis has three attributes:

  • Threshold/Basic needs which is what customers expect to be present in a product or service.
  • The performance is not a necessity but which the customer’s enjoyment will increase with the product or service
  • The excitement which customers don’t even know they want but are delighted when they find it.

Threshold attribute’s affected customer’s satisfaction with the product or service by their absence. If they’re not present, customers are dissatisfied. Even if they’re present, but no other attributes are present customers aren’t particularly happy.

The Kano analysis helps to identify unspoken needs before prioritization; it is intended to help prioritize customer needs.

By using this method of Market Research, it will not only help you assign your features to a product attribute category, but it can also help you reassess your product offerings over time. Use it repeatedly, particularly when there are cultural, economic or technological shifts as these can change customer’s attitudes.

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