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Home Market Research

Business Research: Methods, Types & Examples

Business Research

Content Index

Business research: Definition

Quantitative research methods, qualitative research methods, advantages of business research, disadvantages of business research, importance of business research.

Business research is a process of acquiring detailed information on all the areas of business and using such information to maximize the sales and profit of the business. Such a study helps companies determine which product/service is most profitable or in demand. In simple words, it can be stated as the acquisition of information or knowledge for professional or commercial purposes to determine opportunities and goals for a business.

Business research can be done for anything and everything. In general, when people speak about business research design , it means asking research questions to know where the money can be spent to increase sales, profits, or market share. Such research is critical to make wise and informed decisions.

LEARN ABOUT: Research Process Steps

For example: A mobile company wants to launch a new model in the market. But they are not aware of what are the dimensions of a mobile that are in most demand. Hence, the company conducts business research using various methods to gather information, and the same is then evaluated, and conclusions are drawn as to what dimensions are most in demand.

This will enable the researcher to make wise decisions to position his phone at the right price in the market and hence acquire a larger market share.

LEARN ABOUT:  Test Market Demand

Business research: Types and methodologies

Business research is a part of the business intelligence process. It is usually conducted to determine whether a company can succeed in a new region, to understand its competitors, or simply select a marketing approach for a product. This research can be carried out using steps in qualitative research methods or quantitative research methods.

Quantitative research methods are research methods that deal with numbers. It is a systematic empirical investigation using statistical, mathematical, or computational techniques . Such methods usually start with data collection and then proceed to statistical analysis using various methods. The following are some of the research methods used to carry out business research.

LEARN ABOUT: Data Management Framework

Survey research

Survey research is one of the most widely used methods to gather data, especially for conducting business research. Surveys involve asking various survey questions to a set of audiences through various types like online polls, online surveys, questionnaires, etc. Nowadays, most of the major corporations use this method to gather data and use it to understand the market and make appropriate business decisions.

Various types of surveys, like cross-sectional studies , which need to collect data from a set of audiences at a given point of time, or longitudinal surveys which are needed to collect data from a set of audiences across various time durations in order to understand changes in the respondents’ behavior are used to conduct survey research. With the advancement in technology, surveys can now be sent online through email or social media .

For example: A company wants to know the NPS score for their website i.e. how satisfied are people who are visiting their website. An increase in traffic to their website or the audience spending more time on a website can result in higher rankings on search engines which will enable the company to get more leads as well as increase its visibility.

Hence, the company can ask people who visit their website a few questions through an online survey to understand their opinions or gain feedback and hence make appropriate changes to the website to increase satisfaction.

Learn More:  Business Survey Template

Correlational research

Correlational research is conducted to understand the relationship between two entities and what impact each one of them has on the other. Using mathematical analysis methods, correlational research enables the researcher to correlate two or more variables .

Such research can help understand patterns, relationships, trends, etc. Manipulation of one variable is possible to get the desired results as well. Generally, a conclusion cannot be drawn only on the basis of correlational research.

For example: Research can be conducted to understand the relationship between colors and gender-based audiences. Using such research and identifying the target audience, a company can choose the production of particular color products to be released in the market. This can enable the company to understand the supply and demand requirements of its products.

Causal-Comparative research

Causal-comparative research is a method based on the comparison. It is used to deduce the cause-effect relationship between variables. Sometimes also known as quasi-experimental research, it involves establishing an independent variable and analyzing the effects on the dependent variable.

In such research, data manipulation is not done; however, changes are observed in the variables or groups under the influence of the same changes. Drawing conclusions through such research is a little tricky as independent and dependent variables will always exist in a group. Hence all other parameters have to be taken into consideration before drawing any inferences from the research.

LEARN ABOUT: Causal Research

For example: Research can be conducted to analyze the effect of good educational facilities in rural areas. Such a study can be done to analyze the changes in the group of people from rural areas when they are provided with good educational facilities and before that.

Another example can be to analyze the effect of having dams and how it will affect the farmers or the production of crops in that area.

LEARN ABOUT: Market research trends

Experimental research

Experimental research is based on trying to prove a theory. Such research may be useful in business research as it can let the product company know some behavioral traits of its consumers, which can lead to more revenue. In this method, an experiment is carried out on a set of audiences to observe and later analyze their behavior when impacted by certain parameters.

LEARN ABOUT: Behavioral Targeting

For example: Experimental research was conducted recently to understand if particular colors have an effect on consumers’ hunger. A set of the audience was then exposed to those particular colors while they were eating, and the subjects were observed. It was seen that certain colors like red or yellow increase hunger.

Hence, such research was a boon to the hospitality industry. You can see many food chains like Mcdonalds, KFC, etc., using such colors in their interiors, brands, as well as packaging.

Another example of inferences drawn from experimental research, which is used widely by most bars/pubs across the world, is that loud music in the workplace or anywhere makes a person drink more in less time. This was proven through experimental research and was a key finding for many business owners across the globe.

Online research / Literature research

Literature research is one of the oldest methods available. It is very economical, and a lot of information can be gathered using such research. Online research or literature research involves gathering information from existing documents and studies, which can be available at Libraries, annual reports, etc.

Nowadays, with the advancement in technology, such research has become even more simple and accessible to everyone. An individual can directly research online for any information that is needed, which will give him in-depth information about the topic or the organization.

Such research is used mostly by marketing and salespeople in the business sector to understand the market or their customers. Such research is carried out using existing information that is available from various sources. However, care has to be taken to validate the sources from where the information is going to be collected.

For example , a salesperson has heard a particular firm is looking for some solution that their company provides. Hence, the salesperson will first search for a decision maker from the company, investigate what department he is from, and understand what the target company is looking for and what they are into.

Using this research, he can cater his solution to be spot on when he pitches it to this client. He can also reach out to the customer directly by finding a means to communicate with him by researching online.’

LEARN ABOUT: 12 Best Tools for Researchers

Qualitative research is a method that has a high importance in business research. Qualitative research involves obtaining data through open-ended conversational means of communication. Such research enables the researcher to not only understand what the audience thinks but also why he thinks it.

In such research, in-depth information can be gathered from the subjects depending on their responses. There are various types of qualitative research methods, such as interviews, focus groups, ethnographic research, content analysis, and case study research, that are widely used.

Such methods are of very high importance in business research as they enable the researcher to understand the consumer. What motivates the consumer to buy and what does not is what will lead to higher sales, and that is the prime objective for any business.

Following are a few methods that are widely used in today’s world by most businesses.

Interviews are somewhat similar to surveys, like sometimes they may have the same types of questions used. The difference is that the respondent can answer these open-ended questions at length, and the direction of the conversation or the questions being asked can be changed depending on the response of the subject.

Such a method usually gives the researcher detailed information about the perspective or opinions of its subject. Carrying out interviews with subject matter experts can also give important information critical to some businesses.

For example: An interview was conducted by a telecom manufacturer with a group of women to understand why they have less number of female customers. After interviewing them, the researcher understood that there were fewer feminine colors in some of the models, and females preferred not to purchase them.

Such information can be critical to a business such as a  telecom manufacturer and hence it can be used to increase its market share by targeting women customers by launching some feminine colors in the market.

Another example would be to interview a subject matter expert in social media marketing. Such an interview can enable a researcher to understand why certain types of social media advertising strategies work for a company and why some of them don’t.

LEARN ABOUT: Qualitative Interview

Focus groups

Focus groups are a set of individuals selected specifically to understand their opinions and behaviors. It is usually a small set of a group that is selected keeping in mind the parameters for their target market audience to discuss a particular product or service. Such a method enables a researcher with a larger sample than the interview or a case study while taking advantage of conversational communication.

Focus group is also one of the best examples of qualitative data in education . Nowadays, focus groups can be sent online surveys as well to collect data and answer why, what, and how questions. Such a method is very crucial to test new concepts or products before they are launched in the market.

For example: Research is conducted with a focus group to understand what dimension of screen size is preferred most by the current target market. Such a method can enable a researcher to dig deeper if the target market focuses more on the screen size, features, or colors of the phone. Using this data, a company can make wise decisions about its product line and secure a higher market share.

Ethnographic research

Ethnographic research is one of the most challenging research but can give extremely precise results. Such research is used quite rarely, as it is time-consuming and can be expensive as well. It involves the researcher adapting to the natural environment and observing its target audience to collect data. Such a method is generally used to understand cultures, challenges, or other things that can occur in that particular setting.

For example: The world-renowned show “Undercover Boss” would be an apt example of how ethnographic research can be used in businesses. In this show, the senior management of a large organization works in his own company as a regular employee to understand what improvements can be made, what is the culture in the organization, and to identify hard-working employees and reward them.

It can be seen that the researcher had to spend a good amount of time in the natural setting of the employees and adapt to their ways and processes. While observing in this setting, the researcher could find out the information he needed firsthand without losing any information or any bias and improve certain things that would impact his business.

LEARN ABOUT:   Workforce Planning Model

Case study research

Case study research is one of the most important in business research. It is also used as marketing collateral by most businesses to land up more clients. Case study research is conducted to assess customer satisfaction and document the challenges that were faced and the solutions that the firm gave them.

These inferences are made to point out the benefits that the customer enjoyed for choosing their specific firm. Such research is widely used in other fields like education, social sciences, and similar. Case studies are provided by businesses to new clients to showcase their capabilities, and hence such research plays a crucial role in the business sector.

For example: A services company has provided a testing solution to one of its clients. A case study research is conducted to find out what were the challenges faced during the project, what was the scope of their work, what objective was to be achieved, and what solutions were given to tackle the challenges.

The study can end with the benefits that the company provided through its solutions, like reduced time to test batches, easy implementation or integration of the system, or even cost reduction. Such a study showcases the capability of the company, and hence it can be stated as empirical evidence of the new prospect.

Website visitor profiling/research

Website intercept surveys or website visitor profiling/research is something new that has come up and is quite helpful in the business sector. It is an innovative approach to collect direct feedback from your website visitors using surveys. In recent times a lot of business generation happens online, and hence it is important to understand the visitors of your website as they are your potential customers.

Collecting feedback is critical to any business, as without understanding a customer, no business can be successful. A company has to keep its customers satisfied and try to make them loyal customers in order to stay on top.

A website intercept survey is an online survey that allows you to target visitors to understand their intent and collect feedback to evaluate the customers’ online experience. Information like visitor intention, behavior path, and satisfaction with the overall website can be collected using this.

Depending on what information a company is looking for, multiple forms of website intercept surveys can be used to gather responses. Some of the popular ones are Pop-ups, also called Modal boxes, and on-page surveys.

For example: A prospective customer is looking for a particular product that a company is selling. Once he is directed to the website, an intercept survey will start noting his intent and path. Once the transaction has been made, a pop-up or an on-page survey is provided to the customer to rate the website.

Such research enables the researcher to put this data to good use and hence understand the customers’ intent and path and improve any parts of the website depending on the responses, which in turn would lead to satisfied customers and hence, higher revenues and market share.

LEARN ABOUT: Qualitative Research Questions and Questionnaires

  • Business research helps to identify opportunities and threats.
  • It helps identify research problems , and using this information, wise decisions can be made to tackle the issue appropriately.
  • It helps to understand customers better and hence can be useful to communicate better with the customers or stakeholders.
  • Risks and uncertainties can be minimized by conducting business research in advance.
  • Financial outcomes and investments that will be needed can be planned effectively using business research.
  • Such research can help track competition in the business sector.
  • Business research can enable a company to make wise decisions as to where to spend and how much.
  • Business research can enable a company to stay up-to-date with the market and its trends, and appropriate innovations can be made to stay ahead in the game.
  • Business research helps to measure reputation management
  • Business research can be a high-cost affair
  • Most of the time, business research is based on assumptions
  • Business research can be time-consuming
  • Business research can sometimes give you inaccurate information because of a biased population or a small focus group.
  • Business research results can quickly become obsolete because of the fast-changing markets

Business research is one of the most effective ways to understand customers, the market, and competitors. Such research helps companies to understand the demand and supply of the market. Using such research will help businesses reduce costs and create solutions or products that are targeted to the demand in the market and the correct audience.

In-house business research can enable senior management to build an effective team or train or mentor when needed. Business research enables the company to track its competitors and hence can give you the upper hand to stay ahead of them.

Failures can be avoided by conducting such research as it can give the researcher an idea if the time is right to launch its product/solution and also if the audience is right. It will help understand the brand value and measure customer satisfaction which is essential to continuously innovate and meet customer demands.

This will help the company grow its revenue and market share. Business research also helps recruit ideal candidates for various roles in the company. By conducting such research, a company can carry out a SWOT analysis , i.e. understand the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. With the help of this information, wise decisions can be made to ensure business success.

LEARN ABOUT:  Market research industry

Business research is the first step that any business owner needs to set up his business to survive or to excel in the market. The main reason why such research is of utmost importance is that it helps businesses to grow in terms of revenue, market share, and brand value.

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Business Research: Types, Methods, Examples

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  • Updated on  
  • Jan 29, 2024

business research

Ever wondered what it takes to build a flourishing business ? Aiming to provide maximum sales and profit, business research helps you to gather comprehensive information about your business and accordingly make relevant changes if required. So, in this process of being successful, we gather all types of data to better define our strategies and understand what products or services customers want. And in case, you’re planning to expand your business, research can help you determine your odds of positive results. In this blog, we’ll help you understand the basics of research and analysis .

“Whoever gets closer to the customer, wins.” – Bernadette Jiwa

This Blog Includes:

What is business research, business research example, importance of business research, types & methods, focus groups , case study research , ethnographic research, survey , correlation research , experimental research , advantages and disadvantages of business research, scope of business research, role of business research, business research books, business research report, top 10 tools for business research, business research partners, top 10 business research topics, career prospects , [bonus] best mba colleges in the world.

Business Research can be simply defined as a process of gathering comprehensive data and information on all the areas of business and incorporating this information for sales and profit maximization. If you are wondering what is Business Research, it is a systematic management activity helping companies to determine which product will be most profitable for companies to produce. Also, there are multiple steps in conducting research, with each thoroughly reviewed to ensure that the best decision is made for the company as a whole.

Also Read: Scope of MBA in International Business

Let’s say there’s an automobile company that is planning to launch a car that runs on CNG. To promote cleaner fuel, the company will be involved in developing different plans and strategies to identify the demand for the car they intend to launch. Other than this, the company will also look for competitors, and the target audience, keeping in mind the distribution of CNG in India. Hence the research is conducted on various ideas to formulate a sustainable and more efficient design. 

When it comes to the question of why Business Research is important, it has an essential role to play in varied areas of business. Here are some of the reasons describing the importance of Business Research:

  • It helps businesses gain better insights into their target customer’s preferences, buying patterns, pain points, as well as demographics.
  • Business Research also provides businesses with a detailed overview of their target markets, what’s in trend, as well as market demand.
  • By studying consumers’ buying patterns and preferences as well as market trends and demands with the help of business research, businesses can effectively and efficiently curate the best possible plans and strategies accordingly.
  • The importance of business research also lies in highlighting the areas where unnecessary costs can be minimized and those areas in a business which need more attention and can bring in more customers and hence boost profits.
  • Businesses can constantly innovate as per their customers’ preferences and interests and keep their attention on the brand.
  • Business Research also plays the role of a catalyst as it helps businesses thrive in their markets by capturing all the available opportunities and also meeting the needs and preferences of their customers.

Also Read: Business Analyst vs Data Analyst

examples of business research

Business research plays an important role in the business intelligence process. This is usually conducted to determine if a company can succeed in a new region through competitive analyses and a better marketing approach. Due to this, this broad field has been distinguished into two types namely, Qualitative Research and Quantitative Research Method.

Here are the most important types of Business Research :

Qualitative Research Methods 

It involves putting open-ended questions to the audience through different channels of communication to understand why researchers think in a particular manner. Stress is laid on understanding the intent, attitude, and beliefs to figure out the behaviour and response of the customers. Moreover, the goal of Qualitative Business Research is to get in-depth knowledge about the subjects of the research. Moreover, qualitative research enables us to put the perspective of the consumer in front of the researcher so that we can understand and see the alignment of the ideas between the market and the business. 

The data collected in this type of business research is by the following methods:  

  • Interviews 
  • Case Study 
  • Ethnographic Research 
  • Website Visitor Profiling 
  • Content Analysis 

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Let us take a detailed look at some of the ways-

Interviews and surveys are similar. The only difference lies in the fact that the responder can put a question in an interview whilst it is not possible during a survey. Through interviews, it is easier to understand the detailed perspective of the person concerning the subject of research. A mobile brand researched to understand why certain colours are preferred by male and female customers. The research revealed that since red is assumed to be a feminine colour, it is more preferred by females than males. 

Focus groups are a type of business research that involves only a set of individuals. Each selected individual represents a particular category of the target market. The major difference between interviews and focus groups is the number of people that it involves. To launch a new product for a particular group of society, focus groups prove to be the best way to understand the needs of the local audience. 

For example, Tesla decides to launch their latest car model in India. The company, therefore, will require feedback from the Indian audience only.

Did you know? Amazon, the internet giant changed its payment strategy to enter the Indian market. Since the Indian economy was not entirely ready for online modes of payment, amazon introduced a new payment method and came up with ‘ cash on delivery ’ to gain consumers’ trust.

One of the most effective ways for business research is conducting case studies. With the motive to understand customer satisfaction, challenges that usually the customers face while using the product and hence, providing them with the right solution can be achieved by analysing data secured through data secured by case studies. Case study researchers are conducted in many fields of business that ultimately aid organisations in improving their products or services. 

Ethnographic Research refers to understanding people as a whole. One must be able to grok their consumers or target audience which will help identify patterns, flaws, etc. Ethnography is a branch of anthropology that is the study of what elements or features make us humans. How did people live? What aspect made us so dependent on smartphones and technology? Why would people buy one product over the other? It refers to asking questions about lifestyle, communities, etc., and trying to gain insight into consumer behaviour and buying patterns.

For example, consider a random product. Are people looking for that product? Do they need it? Is it a necessity or a luxury? Which class of people are most likely to buy it? People often cannot comprehend what they are looking for. Gaining different perceptions can help us tailor our products accordingly to the consumers. Who would have thought that the majority of humans will need face masks for survival?

Also Read: How to Become a Research Analyst?

Quantitative Research Methods 

With the employment of mathematical, statistical and computational techniques, quantitative research is carried out to deal with numbers. This systematical empirical investigation starts with the acquisition of the data and then moves on to analyzing it with the help of different tools. The goal is to identify clientele and then meet the targets of the audience. As the method of business research employs a questionnaire to determine the audience’s response, the questions are built around the idea that the audience knows about the product or the services that the firm offers. Some of the key questions answered in quantitative research methods include, who is connected with your network, how they qualify for the ‘product’ or how regularly they visit your website.

The data is collected based on the following research:

  • Correlational
  • Online 
  • Casual Comparative 
  • Experimental 

It is the most common method under quantitative research via which a huge amount of data can be collected concerning a product or service. A common set of questions are asked to the people and they are asked to provide their inputs. To understand the nature of the market in-depth, this method is massively used by leading organisations all across the globe. Analysing data recorded through service helps organisations make suitable decisions.

Under this research, usually two entities are put together to examine the impact they create on each other. As suggested by the name it is the best process to understand patterns, relationships and trends. the data grasped through correlation research is generally combined with other tools as one cannot achieve a firm conclusion using this type of business research.  

Experimental research is purely based on proving a particular theory that is pre-assumed. True experimental research companies can understand varied behavioural traits of the customers that further assist them in generating more revenue. Exposing a set of audience to common parameters, their behaviour is recorded and hence analysed. This can be understood as the main basis of the experimental research. 

Also Read: Scope of Operation Research

There are certain pros and cons of business research that you must know about. Here are the advantages and disadvantages of Business Research.

Advantages of Business Research

  • Business Research plays the role of a catalyst in identifying potential threats, issues as well as opportunities .
  • It provides a detailed analysis of customers and the target audience , thus helping in building better relationships with one’s audience and capturing the areas which we might be missing out on.
  • It also anticipates future problems thus the enterprise is able to tackle those uncertainties and prepare for them beforehand.
  • It keeps a continuous track of competition in the market and gives businesses the scope to come up with better strategies to tackle their competitors.
  • Business Research also conducts a thorough cost analysis thus helping the company efficiently manage resources and allocate them in an optimal manner.
  • It keeps you updated with the latest trends and competitor analysis .

Disadvantages of Business Research

  • Business Research can be expensive and time-consuming .
  • It also has the danger of being assumptive and imprecise at times , because the focus groups might be small or can be highly based on assumptions.
  • The market is ever-changing and ever-evolving and capturing the right trends or anticipating them can constitute a complicated process for business research.

Also Read: Types of Research Design

The process of business research can be as comprehensive and as detailed as a business wants it to be. Generally, a company takes up research with a certain aim or hypothesis in order to figure out the issues, opportunities and trends and how they can be leveraged in the best way.

Here is the step-by-step process of Business Research:

  • Identifying the Opportunity or Problem – To begin with the research, we first need to know what is the problem or the opportunity we would be leveraging on. It can be a popular trend or a common problem that a business is facing and can potentially become the headstart for the research process. Once you know the problem or the opportunity, go ahead with giving an understandable statement of what it’s about, what the hypothesis of the research will be as well as its objectives.
  • Decide and Plan the Research Design – The next step in the business research process to find the right research design which suits the objectives and overall plan of the research. The most popular research designs are Quantitative and Qualitative Research.
  • Determining the Research Method – The research design is closely connected to the research method since both qualitative and quantitative research designs have different methods for data collection, analysis, amongst others. So, once you have put a finger on what the right research design will be, go ahead with finding the right research method as per the plan, types of data collection, objective, costs involved, and other determining factors.
  • Collect Data – Utilizing the research method and design, the next step in the business research process is to collect data and assimilate it.
  • Data Analysis and Evaluation – After assimilating the data required, the data analysis will take place to gather all the observations and findings.
  • Communicate Results – The presentation of the business research report is the concluding step of this procedure after which the higher management works upon the best techniques and strategies to leverage the opportunity or tackle the issue.

Also Read: MBA in Business Analytics

The scope of Business Research is multifarious and reaches out to many specialisations and areas. Let’s take a look the scope of business research across various specialisations:

  • Marketing Management When it comes to business research, becomes an important part of marketing management that analyses consumer behaviour, target audiences, competition, price policy, promotional plans and much more.
  • Financial Management It also plays an essential role in budgeting, financial planning, cost allocation, capital raising, tackling fluctuations with international currency as well as taking finance-related decisions.
  • Production Management Production Management also includes business research as it helps in product development, planning out for a newer one, finalizing the right technologies for production, and so on.
  • Materials Management Business Research is an important aspect of checking the best materials and carrying out its production, supply chain management , logistics , as well as shortlisting negotiation strategies.

There is an incremental role of business research as its importance is across every aspect of the business. Let’s take a look at the role of business research in an enterprise:

  • The most primary role of business research is that it helps across every decision in the business, from product innovation to marketing and promotional planning.
  • Business Research also helps in forecasting a business, whether in terms of competition or any other types of problems it will be facing.
  • Another key area where this plays a bigger role is ensuring consumer satisfaction as through research, we can carry out research and highlight areas where we can efficiently serve our target audience.
  • Business research also helps in implementing cost-effectiveness in a business as it can assist in cutting costs wherever needed and investing more in those areas, where profit is coming from.

Want to understand and learn more about business research? Here are some of the books that will make you a pro in this field. Check out the list of business research books:

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The purpose of a report is to inform the other members, junior and subordinates of the team to provide information on the specific topic. There is a specific format of a business report which makes it look more professional and presentable. There should be a title with the date and nature. The second section includes the introduction, body, and then conclusion. Reports help to identify the issues and helps in resolving them at earlier stages. It can include graphs, surveys, interviews, flow, and piecharts also.

Are you wondering why is there a need to do business research? Business is not stable and it is vital to stay up to date with all the data and developments. It is also important to make business-related decisions, and keep track of competitors, customer feedback, and market changes. The basic objective of business research is to identify the issues and evaluate a plan to resolve them for better managerial functioning.

Now that you are familiar with the objective, importance, and advantages the next important step is to know how to conduct research. There are numerous tools available for free while for some advanced tools there is a membership. Check out the list of top 10 tools:

  • Google Keyword Tools
  • Google Analytics
  • Google Trends

The one thing constant in a business is market changes. A new trend or change comes every time you blink an eye. To keep track of everything externally and internally a research partner comes helpful. There are a few things to keep in mind that will help you in choosing the right business partner. The first thing to keep in mind is that the person should have relevant work experience and expertise in that particular field. An experienced partner can help businesses reach new heights. Look for a partner that can provide well-curated solutions and not the generic ideas that every enterprise follows. Last but not least is that your business research partner should have knowledge of the latest tools and techniques.

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Is your big presentation coming up or your report is due on Monday but you still haven’t finalized your business research topic? Here are some of the trendiest research topics for you:

  • How advertisements influence consumer behaviour?
  • Does incentive motivation increase employee productivity?
  • How to handle crises in the business?
  • How to create a work-life balance in the organization?
  • What are the things a small business owner has to face?
  • How to expand the company globally?
  • How is digital marketing helping every business type?
  • How to maintain the quality and quantity of products?
  • What are the struggles entrepreneurs of a start-up face?
  • How to create a budget and maintain company finances?

In order to build a career in Research , you can simply grab a degree in the field of Management , Business or Administration. So, students with an understanding of the core concepts of business and an inclination for research can consider it as a go-to option. Other suitable programs can be Master in Management , MBA Business Analytics , and MBA Data Analytics , to name a few.

To know more, check out Qualitative Research Methods !

It can simply mean researching every area of a business and using the provided information and data to ensure profit maximization.

There are different types of business research such as interviews, surveys, focus groups, correlational research, ethnographic research, case study research, and quantitative research methods, amongst others.

It is essentially important for various aspects of a business such as profit maximization, cost-cutting, financial management , personnel management, consumer behaviour, etc.

The process of research depends upon the type of research design you are opting for. To start with, we first need to determine the aim or objective of the research, then plan out the whole process which includes the types of methods we will be using, then the actual research that takes place followed by the data found that helps in understanding the key observations and how they can be implemented to actualize research hypothesis.

If you’re thinking to start a product line in your existing business or planning a startup, business research is a fundamental process that helps you to navigate the opportunities and obstacles in the marketplace. Knowing your strengths and weaknesses can help you come up with advanced and powerful research techniques that will make it easier to manage. Are you planning to take your higher education abroad? Then, you can quickly book a counselling session with the experts at Leverage Edu and we can help you build the right platform for you to grow in the corporate world.

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  • What is Business Research: Methods, Types & Examples

What is Business Research: Methods, Types & Examples

Defne Çobanoğlu

Every business owner wants their company always to be successful and profitable. And even if you have a successful business plan, that does not mean things will not need changing in the future. And trial and error may not be on the table when you can not afford to lose money and precious customers. Therefore, you need to be cautious before taking any steps and do your research . 

In this article, we explained business research, its methods, and types to help business owners and inform those interested to know more. We also added some examples of scenarios any company may face. Let us get started with the definition of business research!

  • What is business research?

Business research is a type of research process where the main goal is to help a company thrive and collect data about the target audience, potential business plans, and marketing strategies . The data collection about possible risks and investment opportunities helps business owners make informed decisions about future plans. 

The fields that can use business research include marketing, business, education, and social science . But of course, they are not the only ones that can benefit from business research. It is a helpful research type for all business needs. Now, let us see how we can further categorize this into methods and types of business research.

  • Methods and types of business research

Business research methods and types

Business research methods and types

In business research methodology, there are two main types. These are quantitative research and qualitative research. In the simplest terms, quantitative research is about collecting numerical and factual data, whereas qualitative research is about collecting data by using open-ended questions . These two methods can be divided into more specific parts. Let us get started with quantitative research methods.

  • A. Quantitative Research Methods

Quantitative research methods give the researchers factual and numerical evidence that can be effectively used in decision-making processes. There are numerous ways to collect quantitative data, and it is also possible to use more than one method to prove the credibility of the information. Let us start with the first one:

  • 1. Survey research

Surveys are a great way to collect information from a targeted group, no matter how big or small. They can be done in the format of an online survey, phone survey or questionnaire . Surveys are usually close-ended or multiple-choice questions that are easy to group and analyze. The business doing the research can collect valuable information directly from its customers.

  • 2. Correlational research

Correlational research focuses on the discovery of whether two different entities influence each other in any way. The main focus of this research method is not to make decisions. But rather, they can use the findings to explore further using other research methods.

  • 3. Causal-comparative research

Causal-comparative research is similar to correlational research in that both of them compare two different elements and how they affect each other. But the main difference is that fact the focus of this research method is to draw conclusions on the cause-and-effect relationship of said entities.

  • 4. Experimental research

Experimental research has a broad spectrum when it comes to what is taken as ‘experimental’. Basically, it is when businesses want to test a specific theory about the quality of a product or service. There are many methods that can be used, and it is decided by the researcher according to the theory that will be tested.

  • 5. Literature research

Literature research is a very effective and economical research method to use. It is about using offline and online existing literature and going through them to analyze the data. It is mostly used in sales about consumer behaviors.

  • B. Qualitative Research Methods

Qualitative research is not about numbers like quantitative research. Instead, it is about emotions, opinions, and approaches. The target audience can be presented with a topic through open-ended questions. There is more than one method to go with, and it is even possible to use multiple methods at once. Let us see qualitative research methods: 

  • 1. Interviews

The interview method is mostly done on a smaller participant group about a specific subject. They consist of open-ended questions and can be in a structured or unstructured format. Interviews are one-on-one questions asked to the target audience to gain insight into the problem . 

  • 2. Focus Groups

A focus group is a pre-determined group of individuals who are chosen to participate in a study to answer specific questions. The researchers present them with a topic and encourage discussions with open-ended questions . Then, the findings are generalized to make decisions.

  • 3. Ethnographic Research

Ethnographic research is similar to conceptual research, and its main focus is to understand the culture and people of the target audience by using observation . This method is done by observing the people in their natural environment and seeing how they interact with one another and their surroundings.

  • 4. Case Study

Businesses generally use a case study method to showcase to potential consumers how their product or service helped a certain individual or a group . It is a good way to attract new customers. This method helps highlight the company’s skill sets and assets.

  • 5. Website visitor research

This research method is relatively newer than others. Its main focus is to collect feedback from individuals who use the company website and ask them about their opinions. A business can use this method by presenting a customer with a quick survey after their purchase on the website . Afterward, the company can improve user satisfaction by fixing existing problems.

  • Importance of business research

The reasons for conducting business research

The reasons for conducting business research

Businesses grow by knowing their target market, potential customers, and competitors. And this is only possible by conducting market research to help make informed business decisions. The main goal of business research is to help stakeholders of the company make planned and informed decisions using the facts in the business research report. However, there are other reasons why business research is important. These are:

  • Gathering information on customers: A business research report provides data on consumers’ behavioral changes, their needs, preferences, and expectations. The managers and stakeholders can make informed decisions with this knowledge.
  • Performance evaluation: Research allows businesses to evaluate their success against industry standards and other competitors. This helps keep track while deciding how to differentiate themselves from others.
  • Market expansion: Business research topics include areas that were not explored before. Therefore, when the business wants to expand to new markets, the research provides information on the market’s dynamics and potential risks and profits .
  • Efficiency and cost-reduction: The data collected by business research helps identify any obstacles to productivity and cost excessiveness. That way, a more cost-effective and efficient approach can be taken.
  • Business research examples

Business research helps business managers make smart plans for the company and its future. They can make informed decisions about new marketing strategies, building new products or service branches, or improving customer satisfaction . 

Business research example #1

Imagine a company making energy drinks wants to know if they can expand their market to the older part of the population. They do not know if they will be interested in their product or what kind of marketing strategies they can use to attract older people’s attention. They can make up a focus group and ask them about their opinions. The company can also conduct literature research to find out information about the competitors .

Business research example #2

Imagine a company that has a clothing store website wants to know if there is anything that makes shopping on their website difficult for customers. They can show a pop-up customer satisfaction survey and ask them if they can find what they are looking for easily and how the website visiting experience was. Then, they can collect customer feedback and see how they can improve their website to enhance customer satisfaction levels.

  • Frequently asked questions about business research

What are the 4 stages of business research?

Much like every other research, business research is also best done when it is preplanned and organized. And there is a 4 stage plan of business research. These are:

1 - Defining the problem

2 - Designing the research plan

3 - Collecting data and making an analysis

4 - Reporting on the findings

What is the purpose of business research?

The purpose of business research is to make sense of the existing elements of a business, such as consumers, product placement, marketing, innovation, etc . And using the data collected on these elements to make informed decisions and create smart business strategies to improve the success of the company.

When to use business research?

Business research is best used when a new approach is taken or a new product is launched, and the risks need to be assessed. It is essential to be mindful of all the negative and positive sides of a new strategy without risking the entirety of the company.

  • Final words

When you own a business, no matter how big or small, change can be intimidating. You can not go to new territories blindly. But, you can not stay the same either. In order to keep your existing customers and find new potential ones, you should be mindful of their habits and opinions. The best way of doing this is either to ask them directly ( using a survey, interviewing them, etc .) or to do your own research to draw conclusions.

In this article, we explained business research, quantitative and qualitative research methods, and business research types. We also included some examples of business research and what methods can be used for those problems. If you want to do your own business research but do not know where to start, you can check out quantitative research questions to get you started. Also, do not forget to check out other articles on research and so much more!

Defne is a content writer at forms.app. She is also a translator specializing in literary translation. Defne loves reading, writing, and translating professionally and as a hobby. Her expertise lies in survey research, research methodologies, content writing, and translation.

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Business Research: Definition, Examples

business research

Business research examines all aspects of a business environment. It asks questions about competitors, market structure, government regulations , economic trends, technological advances, changing patterns of the business world, and numerous other factors that make up the business environment.

The emphasis of business research is on shifting decision-makers from intuitive information gathering to systematic and objective investigation.

Like other research, business research is accomplished through exploration, description, explanation, and prediction.

Let’s Understand Business Research:

What is Business Research?

Business research is a systematic and objective inquiry that provides information to guide managerial decisions, which are arrived at through planning, acquiring, analyzing, and disseminating relevant data to decision-makers to mobilize the organization to take appropriate actions to maximize business performance.

Who Business Research Works?

Business research is of recent origin and mostly supported by business organizations, while the public domain has sponsored much environmental research, some of it for hundreds of years.

The development of scientific methods in business research lags behind similar evolution in the physical sciences.

Physical scientists have been more rigorous in their concepts and research procedures. They are much more advanced in their theory development than business scientists. Business research operates in a less favorable environment in other ways, too.

Physical research is usually conducted under controlled laboratory conditions, while business research seldom is.

Business research is an important management activity that helps companies determine which products will be most profitable for companies to produce.

Several steps are necessary when conducting business research: each step must be thoroughly reviewed to ensure that the business enterprise makes the best decision.

Steps of Business Research

These steps include, among others:

  • Product analysis.
  • Market analysis.
  • Financial analysis.
  • Competitor analysis.
  • Growth analysis.

Product Analysis

Product analysis is the first step in business research.

Companies must find a product that meets consumer demand or exceeds consumer demand; otherwise, the product will fail in the economic marketplace.

One type of analysis is to find an existing product that can be improved through design and features.

Another kind of product analysis will find emerging markets with high demand and low supply, which allows companies to sell products to meet consumer demand.

Market Analysis

Companies will conduct a market analysis to determine how much profit may be earned from current demand.

Management will look at which stage of the business cycle the market is currently in, whether emerging, plateau, or declining. A market analysis will also determine the price points at which products can be sold.

Financial Analysis

The financial analysis determines the cost of each production item used to produce goods and services.

Management will also review the best cost application methods, ensuring that all production costs are adequately applied to each product manufactured or service rendered.

Competitor Analysis

A competitor analysis of a market is an essential part of business research. Knowing which companies have the best production methods or customer loyalty helps new companies understand how they can create a competitive advantage when entering a new market.

Growth Analysis

Growth analysis is crucial in understanding a business operation’s profitability.

Business research usually includes forecasting the growth and direction of the current industry or market. Knowing to which direction the market is headed helps companies determine the stability of new business operations.

A SWOT (strength, weakness, opportunity, and threat) analysis is often undertaken to understand a market.

Based on this analysis, a business enterprise can take strategic decisions or measures in a business venture.

What are the primary objectives of business research?

Business research seeks to understand all aspects of a business environment , including competitors, market structure, government regulations, economic trends, technological advances, and changing patterns in the business world.

How does business research differ from physical sciences regarding its development and methods?

The development of scientific methods in business research lags behind that in the physical sciences. Physical scientists have been more rigorous in their concepts, research procedures, and theory development. Additionally, physical research is often conducted under controlled laboratory conditions, whereas business research usually isn’t.

What are the steps involved in conducting business research?

Business research involves several steps, including product analysis, market analysis, financial analysis, competitor analysis, and growth analysis.

Why is a SWOT analysis often undertaken in business research?

A SWOT (strength, weakness, opportunity, and threat) analysis is undertaken to understand a market comprehensively. Based on this analysis, businesses can make strategic decisions or measures in their ventures.

Examples of Business Research

Here are five examples that illustrate what business research is.

Microcredit programs from institutional and non-institutional sources have been found to significantly impact raising the standard of living of rural people, especially women.

But there is ample evidence that these credit facilities are misused and misdirected in many instances.

This practice has led to a high default rate, putting institutions hesitant to finance rural people. In this context, it is imperative to examine the status of credit utilization and assess the extent and magnitude of misuse and diversion of credit in rural areas.

Human resource development has become an essential component of the development process. This is because the human factor drives any development process .

Since a firm’s human resources are an important potential source of sustained competitive advantage , managing them well helps create unique competencies that differentiate products and services and, in turn, drive competitiveness.

This link, in principle, facilitates successful corporate performance.

An increasing body of work argues that a positive relationship exists between the so-called high-performance work practices and different measures of company performance.

Such high-performance work practices include comprehensive employee recruitment and selection procedures, incentive compensation and performance management systems, and extensive employee involvement and training.

Several studies in Bangladesh and elsewhere have found a positive relationship between HRM practices and policies and different measures of company performance.

Keeping the above background in view, a research firm designed a study to focus on studying the relationship between rewards and recognition practices and firm performance, as well as between recruitment and retention systems and firm performance, using a survey instrument for traditional HRM activities (recruitment, selection, performance management, training, compensation , and employee relations) and using independently collected organizational performance data focusing on financial performance (assets, capital, deposits, and return on equity).

The researcher decided to restrict his sample to the banking industry of Bangladesh.

In one of her papers, Sultana (2012: 15) states that women entrepreneurs in SMEs have emerged as a new class both in Bangladesh’s urban and rural areas.

Though some studies were conducted on entrepreneurship development in Bangladesh, no significant research was done on women entrepreneurs’ performance, either in rural or urban areas.

Women entrepreneurship or women in business is considered a very recent phenomenon in Bangladesh. Many economists, sociologists, and political scientists have recognized entrepreneurship in small businesses as an essential gradient influencing the economic growth of a country.

Keeping this scenario in view, the author attempted to highlight the activities of women in small and medium enterprises (SMEs), particularly in urban areas, including Dhaka Metropolitan city.

The study also collected data relevant to the entrepreneurial qualities of women and their socioeconomic status to understand whether these facilitate or constrain women to emerge as successful entrepreneurs.

This example is drawn from an adventure travel survey in a US county, where many small firms operate on half-dozen rivers and provide half-day to multi-day trips to thousands of clients annually.

The managers of a group of county river basin outfitters wanted to know how to increase customers’ satisfaction and repeat business for their multi-day river trips.

They wanted to verify the hypothesis that customer satisfaction is related to concerns with the quality of food and amenities provided safety and lore about the natural and historical setting of the trips.

Financial statements, the critical parts of financial reporting , are the principal means of supplying accounting information to a wide range of users to evaluate the financial position, profitability, liquidity, and prospects of a company so that the users can make economic decisions.

The stability of the market economy largely depends on the user groups’ confidence in the fairness of the financial statements (Choudhury et el. 1996).

Generally, fair presentation refers to the ability of the economic conditions of a company. This relates to accounting accuracy and completeness (Sen, 2002).

Keeping these points in view, Jahan and Nahar (2012: 79) planned a study to examine to what extent the companies in Bangladesh follow or observe the adapted Bangladesh Accounting Standard 1 (BAS-1) and also analyze the compliance of BAS-1 in presenting the financial report of different companies in Bangladesh.

30 Accounting Research Paper Topics and Ideas for Writing

Introduction to Business Research

  • First Online: 01 January 2013

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In the present fast track business environment marked by cut-throat competition, many organizations rely on business research to gain a competitive advantage and greater market share. A good research study helps organizations to understand processes, products, customers, markets and competition, to develop policies, strategies and tactics that are most likely to succeed.

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Sreejesh, S., Mohapatra, S., Anusree, M.R. (2014). Introduction to Business Research. In: Business Research Methods. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-00539-3_1

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  • Donald R. Cooper
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“ Business Research: A Guide to Planning, Conducting, and Reporting Your Study is a worthy entry into this field of research texts. It provides a carefully thought out and tightly organized plan for conducting research across a variety of business and non-business fields. Rather than a cook book, it presents a sound theoretical approach to doing research firmly grounded in an understanding of the scientific method. It carries the student from problem inception to finished report in a highly readable and entertaining way. It can be recommended to any instructor who wants a text for a research methods course that is flexible and easy to use.”

“Donald Cooper provides a roadmap for success by supplying his readers with the essential tools needed to succeed in conducting and reporting research in the ever changing business environment we live in today.”

“This book provides clear, concise and practical guides to the whole research process from beginning to end. It is an effective reference for students and anyone learning how to do research. It covers each and every step of the research process thoroughly from exploring research question and problem all the way to writing the results.”

“An excellent guide for the novice or experienced researcher. This book is written with scholarship, integrity, and intelligence. The author has provided an excellent writing style and examples.  The material is easy to understand and presented in a fashion that students will enjoy.”

“I believe this to be a vast improvement over traditional research texts. The language is easy to understand making the work more accessible to students.”

“[Cooper] provides the step-by-step research process and explains the relevance and importance of each step. Additionally, the use and write-up of the data to inform readers of research is critical.”

“This text provides a comprehensive coverage on business research.”

“The textbook helps the serious researcher think better about research design.”

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  • The only book to offer a simplified design, including both qualitative research and mixed designs, providing a useful and valuable resource for all students.
  • Design matrix and three sets of questions narrow down the most appropriate design methods , allowing readers to begin their research projects with greater efficiency.  
  • Unique Statistical Decision Trees enable students to bypass the typical statistics chapters and select the appropriate analysis based on prior learning, thus lessening anxiety surrounding complex research assignments. 
  • Real world case studies blend business research within the context of successful organizations to detail business research challenges within a broad array of examples.
  • Global narrative highlights a wide spectrum of business research challenges. 
  • A concise and effective APA style how-to guide with over 26 exhibits that includes writing examples using permissions for articles and a 2016 thesis.
  • Robust pedagogical features include learning objectives, key terms, discussion questions, comparison tables for a business report vs. an academic report, and over 500 references.
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Home » 500+ Business Research Topics

500+ Business Research Topics

Business Research Topics

Business research is an essential component of any successful organization, as it allows companies to make informed decisions based on data-driven insights. Whether it’s market research to identify new opportunities, or analyzing internal processes to improve efficiency, there are a vast array of business research topics that companies can explore. With the constantly evolving business landscape, it’s critical for organizations to stay up-to-date with the latest research trends and best practices to remain competitive. In this post, we’ll explore some of the most compelling business research topics that are currently being studied, providing insights and actionable recommendations for businesses of all sizes.

Business Research Topics

Business Research Topics are as follows:

  • The impact of social media on consumer behavior
  • Strategies for enhancing customer satisfaction in the service industry
  • The effectiveness of mobile marketing campaigns
  • Exploring the factors influencing employee turnover
  • The role of leadership in organizational culture
  • Investigating the relationship between corporate social responsibility and financial performance
  • Assessing the impact of employee engagement on organizational performance
  • The challenges and opportunities of global supply chain management
  • Analyzing the effectiveness of e-commerce platforms
  • Investigating the impact of organizational culture on employee motivation
  • The role of corporate governance in ensuring ethical business practices
  • Examining the impact of digital marketing on brand equity
  • Strategies for managing diversity and inclusion in the workplace
  • Exploring the effects of employee empowerment on job satisfaction
  • The role of innovation in business growth
  • Analyzing the impact of mergers and acquisitions on company performance
  • Investigating the impact of workplace design on employee productivity
  • The challenges and opportunities of international business expansion
  • Strategies for managing talent in the knowledge economy
  • The role of artificial intelligence in transforming business operations
  • Examining the impact of customer loyalty programs on retention and revenue
  • Investigating the relationship between corporate social responsibility and brand reputation
  • The role of emotional intelligence in effective leadership
  • The impact of digital transformation on small and medium-sized enterprises
  • Analyzing the effectiveness of green marketing strategies
  • The role of entrepreneurship in economic development
  • Investigating the impact of employee training and development on organizational performance
  • The challenges and opportunities of omnichannel retailing
  • Examining the impact of organizational change on employee morale and productivity
  • The role of corporate social responsibility in attracting and retaining millennial talent
  • Analyzing the impact of employee motivation on organizational culture
  • Investigating the impact of workplace diversity on team performance
  • The challenges and opportunities of blockchain technology in business operations
  • Strategies for managing cross-functional teams
  • The role of big data analytics in business decision-making
  • Examining the impact of corporate social responsibility on customer loyalty
  • Investigating the relationship between corporate social responsibility and employee engagement
  • The impact of social media marketing on customer engagement and brand loyalty.
  • The effectiveness of AI in improving customer service and satisfaction.
  • The role of entrepreneurship in economic development and job creation.
  • The impact of the gig economy on the labor market.
  • The effects of corporate social responsibility on company profitability.
  • The role of data analytics in predicting consumer behavior and market trends.
  • The effects of globalization on the competitiveness of small businesses.
  • The impact of e-commerce on traditional brick-and-mortar retail.
  • The role of emotional intelligence in leadership and team management.
  • The effects of workplace diversity on employee productivity and satisfaction.
  • The role of corporate culture in employee retention and satisfaction.
  • The impact of employee training and development on company performance.
  • The effectiveness of performance-based pay structures on employee motivation.
  • The impact of sustainability practices on company reputation and profitability.
  • The effects of artificial intelligence on job displacement and the future of work.
  • The role of innovation in the growth and success of small businesses.
  • The impact of government regulations on business operations and profitability.
  • The effects of organizational structure on company performance and efficiency.
  • The role of emotional labor in service industries.
  • The impact of employee empowerment on job satisfaction and retention.
  • The effects of workplace flexibility on employee productivity and well-being.
  • The role of emotional intelligence in negotiation and conflict resolution.
  • The impact of branding on consumer behavior and purchase decisions.
  • The effects of customer experience on brand loyalty and advocacy.
  • The role of storytelling in marketing and advertising.
  • The impact of consumer psychology on pricing strategies and sales.
  • The effects of influencer marketing on consumer behavior and brand loyalty.
  • The role of trust in online transactions and e-commerce.
  • The impact of product design on consumer perception and purchasing decisions.
  • The effects of customer satisfaction on company profitability and growth.
  • The role of social entrepreneurship in addressing societal problems and creating value.
  • The impact of corporate governance on company performance and stakeholder relations.
  • The effects of workplace harassment on employee well-being and company culture.
  • The role of strategic planning in the success of small businesses.
  • The impact of technology on supply chain management and logistics.
  • The effects of customer segmentation on marketing strategies and sales.
  • The role of corporate philanthropy in building brand reputation and loyalty.
  • The impact of intellectual property protection on innovation and creativity.
  • The effects of trade policies on international business operations and profitability.
  • The role of strategic partnerships in business growth and expansion.
  • The impact of digital transformation on organizational structure and operations.
  • The effects of leadership styles on employee motivation and performance.
  • The role of corporate social activism in shaping public opinion and brand reputation.
  • The impact of mergers and acquisitions on company performance and stakeholder value.
  • The effects of workplace automation on job displacement and re-skilling.
  • The role of cross-cultural communication in international business operations.
  • The impact of workplace stress on employee health and productivity.
  • The effects of customer reviews and ratings on online sales and reputation.
  • The role of competitive intelligence in market research and strategy development.
  • The impact of brand identity on consumer trust and loyalty.
  • The impact of organizational structure on innovation and creativity
  • Analyzing the effectiveness of virtual teams in global organizations
  • The role of corporate social responsibility in crisis management
  • The challenges and opportunities of online marketplaces
  • Strategies for managing cultural diversity in multinational corporations
  • The impact of employer branding on employee retention
  • Investigating the impact of corporate social responsibility on investor behavior
  • The role of technology in enhancing customer experience
  • Analyzing the impact of social responsibility initiatives on customer satisfaction
  • Investigating the impact of supply chain disruptions on business performance
  • The role of business ethics in organizational decision-making
  • The challenges and opportunities of artificial intelligence in customer service
  • Strategies for managing employee burnout and stress in the workplace.
  • Impact of social media on consumer behavior and its implications for businesses.
  • The impact of corporate social responsibility on company performance.
  • An analysis of the relationship between employee satisfaction and customer loyalty.
  • The effect of advertising on consumer behavior.
  • A study on the effectiveness of social media marketing in building brand image.
  • The impact of technological innovations on business strategy and operations.
  • The relationship between leadership style and employee motivation.
  • A study of the effects of corporate culture on employee engagement.
  • An analysis of the factors influencing consumer buying behavior.
  • The effectiveness of training and development programs in enhancing employee performance.
  • The impact of global economic factors on business decision-making.
  • The role of organizational communication in achieving business goals.
  • The relationship between customer satisfaction and business success.
  • A study of the challenges and opportunities in international business.
  • The effectiveness of supply chain management in improving business performance.
  • An analysis of the factors influencing customer loyalty in the hospitality industry.
  • The impact of employee turnover on organizational performance.
  • A study of the impact of corporate governance on company performance.
  • The role of innovation in business growth and success.
  • An analysis of the relationship between marketing and sales performance.
  • The effect of organizational structure on employee behavior.
  • A study of the impact of cultural differences on business negotiations.
  • The effectiveness of pricing strategies in increasing sales revenue.
  • The impact of customer service on customer loyalty.
  • A study of the role of human resource management in business success.
  • The impact of e-commerce on traditional brick-and-mortar businesses.
  • An analysis of the relationship between employee empowerment and job satisfaction.
  • The effectiveness of customer relationship management in building brand loyalty.
  • The role of business ethics in corporate decision-making.
  • A study of the impact of digital marketing on consumer behavior.
  • The effect of organizational culture on employee turnover.
  • An analysis of the factors influencing employee engagement in the workplace.
  • The impact of social media on business communication and marketing.
  • A study of the relationship between customer service and customer loyalty in the airline industry.
  • The role of diversity and inclusion in business success.
  • The effectiveness of performance management systems in improving employee performance.
  • The impact of corporate social responsibility on employee engagement.
  • A study of the factors influencing business expansion into new markets.
  • The role of brand identity in customer loyalty and retention.
  • The effectiveness of change management strategies in organizational change.
  • The impact of organizational structure on organizational performance.
  • A study of the impact of technology on the future of work.
  • The relationship between innovation and competitive advantage in the marketplace.
  • The effect of employee training on organizational performance.
  • An analysis of the impact of online reviews on consumer behavior.
  • The role of leadership in shaping organizational culture.
  • The effectiveness of talent management strategies in retaining top talent.
  • The impact of globalization on small and medium-sized enterprises.
  • A study of the relationship between corporate social responsibility and brand reputation.
  • The effectiveness of employee retention strategies in reducing turnover rates.
  • The role of emotional intelligence in leadership and employee engagement.
  • The impact of digital marketing on customer behavior
  • The role of organizational culture in employee engagement and retention
  • The effects of employee training and development on organizational performance
  • The relationship between corporate social responsibility and financial performance
  • The impact of globalization on business strategy
  • The importance of supply chain management in achieving competitive advantage
  • The role of innovation in business growth and sustainability
  • The impact of e-commerce on traditional retail businesses
  • The role of leadership in managing change in organizations
  • The effects of workplace diversity on organizational performance
  • The impact of social media on brand image and reputation
  • The relationship between employee motivation and productivity
  • The role of organizational structure in promoting innovation
  • The effects of customer service on customer loyalty
  • The impact of globalization on small businesses
  • The role of corporate governance in preventing unethical behavior
  • The effects of technology on job design and work organization
  • The relationship between employee satisfaction and turnover
  • The impact of mergers and acquisitions on organizational culture
  • The effects of employee benefits on job satisfaction
  • The impact of cultural differences on international business negotiations
  • The role of strategic planning in organizational success
  • The effects of organizational change on employee stress and burnout
  • The impact of business ethics on customer trust and loyalty
  • The role of human resource management in achieving competitive advantage
  • The effects of outsourcing on organizational performance
  • The impact of diversity and inclusion on team performance
  • The role of corporate social responsibility in brand differentiation
  • The effects of leadership style on organizational culture
  • The Impact of Digital Marketing on Brand Equity: A Study of E-commerce Businesses
  • Investigating the Relationship between Employee Engagement and Organizational Performance
  • Analyzing the Effects of Corporate Social Responsibility on Customer Loyalty and Firm Performance
  • An Empirical Study of the Factors Affecting Entrepreneurial Success in the Technology Sector
  • The Influence of Organizational Culture on Employee Motivation and Job Satisfaction: A Case Study of a Service Industry
  • Investigating the Impact of Organizational Change on Employee Resistance: A Comparative Study of Two Organizations
  • An Exploration of the Impact of Artificial Intelligence on Supply Chain Management
  • Examining the Relationship between Leadership Styles and Employee Creativity in Innovative Organizations
  • Investigating the Effectiveness of Performance Appraisal Systems in Improving Employee Performance
  • Analyzing the Role of Emotional Intelligence in Leadership Effectiveness: A Study of Senior Managers
  • The Impact of Transformational Leadership on Employee Motivation and Job Satisfaction in the Healthcare Sector
  • Evaluating the Effectiveness of Talent Management Strategies in Enhancing Organizational Performance
  • A Study of the Effects of Customer Relationship Management on Customer Retention and Loyalty
  • Investigating the Impact of Corporate Governance on Firm Performance: Evidence from Emerging Markets
  • The Relationship between Intellectual Capital and Firm Performance: A Case Study of Technology Firms
  • Analyzing the Effectiveness of Diversity Management in Improving Organizational Performance
  • The Impact of Internationalization on the Performance of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises: A Comparative Study of Developed and Developing Countries
  • Examining the Relationship between Corporate Social Responsibility and Financial Performance: A Study of Listed Firms
  • Investigating the Influence of Entrepreneurial Orientation on Firm Performance in Emerging Markets
  • Analyzing the Impact of E-commerce on Traditional Retail Business Models: A Study of Brick-and-Mortar Stores
  • The Effect of Corporate Reputation on Customer Loyalty and Firm Performance: A Study of the Banking Sector
  • Investigating the Factors Affecting Consumer Adoption of Mobile Payment Systems
  • The Role of Corporate Social Responsibility in Attracting and Retaining Millennial Employees
  • Analyzing the Impact of Social Media Marketing on Brand Awareness and Consumer Purchase Intentions
  • A Study of the Effects of Employee Training and Development on Job Performance
  • Investigating the Relationship between Corporate Culture and Employee Turnover: A Study of Multinational Companies
  • The Impact of Business Process Reengineering on Organizational Performance: A Study of Service Industries
  • An Empirical Study of the Factors Affecting Internationalization Strategies of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises
  • The Effect of Strategic Human Resource Management on Firm Performance: A Study of Manufacturing Firms
  • Investigating the Influence of Leadership on Organizational Culture: A Comparative Study of Two Organizations
  • The Impact of Technology Adoption on Organizational Productivity: A Study of the Healthcare Sector
  • Analyzing the Effects of Brand Personality on Consumer Purchase Intentions: A Study of Luxury Brands
  • The Relationship between Corporate Social Responsibility and Customer Perceptions of Product Quality: A Study of the Food and Beverage Industry
  • Investigating the Effectiveness of Performance Management Systems in Improving Employee Performance: A Study of a Public Sector Organization
  • The Impact of Business Ethics on Firm Performance: A Study of the Banking Industry
  • Examining the Relationship between Employee Engagement and Customer Satisfaction in the Service Industry
  • Investigating the Influence of Entrepreneurial Networking on Firm Performance: A Study of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises
  • The Effect of Corporate Social Responsibility on Employee Retention: A Study of High-tech Firms
  • The impact of workplace communication on employee engagement
  • The role of customer feedback in improving service quality
  • The effects of employee empowerment on job satisfaction
  • The impact of innovation on customer satisfaction
  • The role of knowledge management in organizational learning
  • The effects of product innovation on market share
  • The impact of business location on customer behavior
  • The role of financial management in business success
  • The effects of corporate social responsibility on employee engagement
  • The impact of cultural intelligence on cross-cultural communication
  • The role of social media in crisis management
  • The effects of corporate branding on customer loyalty
  • The impact of globalization on consumer behavior
  • The role of emotional intelligence in leadership effectiveness
  • The effects of employee involvement in decision-making on job satisfaction
  • The impact of business strategy on market share
  • The role of corporate culture in promoting ethical behavior
  • The effects of corporate social responsibility on investor behavior
  • The impact of sustainability on brand image and reputation
  • The role of corporate social responsibility in reducing carbon emissions.
  • The effectiveness of loyalty programs on customer retention
  • The benefits of remote work for employee productivity
  • The impact of environmental sustainability on consumer purchasing decisions
  • The role of brand identity in consumer loyalty
  • The relationship between employee satisfaction and customer satisfaction
  • The impact of e-commerce on traditional brick-and-mortar stores
  • The effectiveness of online advertising on consumer behavior
  • The impact of leadership styles on employee motivation
  • The role of corporate social responsibility in brand perception
  • The impact of workplace diversity on organizational performance
  • The effectiveness of gamification in employee training programs
  • The impact of pricing strategies on consumer behavior
  • The effectiveness of mobile marketing on consumer engagement
  • The impact of emotional intelligence on leadership effectiveness
  • The role of customer service in consumer loyalty
  • The impact of technology on supply chain management
  • The effectiveness of employee training programs on job performance
  • The impact of culture on consumer behavior
  • The effectiveness of performance appraisal systems on employee motivation
  • The impact of social responsibility on organizational performance
  • The role of innovation in business success
  • The impact of ethical leadership on organizational culture
  • The effectiveness of cross-functional teams in project management
  • The impact of government regulations on business operations
  • The role of strategic planning in business growth
  • The impact of emotional intelligence on team dynamics
  • The effectiveness of supply chain management on customer satisfaction
  • The impact of workplace culture on employee satisfaction
  • The role of employee engagement in organizational success
  • The impact of globalization on organizational culture
  • The effectiveness of virtual teams in project management
  • The impact of employee turnover on organizational performance
  • The role of corporate social responsibility in talent acquisition
  • The impact of technology on employee training and development
  • The effectiveness of knowledge management on organizational learning
  • The impact of organizational structure on employee motivation
  • The role of innovation in organizational change
  • The impact of cultural intelligence on global business operations
  • The effectiveness of marketing strategies on brand perception
  • The impact of change management on organizational culture
  • The role of leadership in organizational transformation
  • The impact of employee empowerment on job satisfaction
  • The effectiveness of project management methodologies on project success
  • The impact of workplace communication on team performance
  • The role of emotional intelligence in conflict resolution
  • The impact of employee motivation on job performance
  • The effectiveness of diversity and inclusion initiatives on organizational performance.
  • The impact of social media on consumer behavior and buying decisions
  • The role of diversity and inclusion in corporate culture and its effects on employee retention and productivity
  • The effectiveness of remote work policies on job satisfaction and work-life balance
  • The impact of customer experience on brand loyalty and revenue growth
  • The effects of environmental sustainability practices on corporate reputation and financial performance
  • The role of corporate social responsibility in consumer purchasing decisions
  • The effectiveness of leadership styles on team performance and productivity
  • The effects of employee motivation on job performance and turnover
  • The impact of technology on supply chain management and logistics efficiency
  • The role of emotional intelligence in effective leadership and team dynamics
  • The impact of artificial intelligence and automation on job displacement and workforce trends
  • The effects of brand image on consumer perception and purchasing decisions
  • The role of corporate culture in promoting innovation and creativity
  • The impact of e-commerce on traditional brick-and-mortar retail businesses
  • The effects of corporate governance on financial reporting and transparency
  • The effectiveness of performance-based compensation on employee motivation and productivity
  • The impact of online reviews and ratings on consumer trust and brand reputation
  • The effects of workplace diversity on innovation and creativity
  • The impact of mobile technology on marketing strategies and consumer behavior
  • The role of emotional intelligence in customer service and satisfaction
  • The effects of corporate reputation on financial performance and stakeholder trust
  • The impact of artificial intelligence on customer service and support
  • The role of organizational culture in promoting ethical behavior and decision-making
  • The effects of corporate social responsibility on employee engagement and satisfaction
  • The impact of employee turnover on organizational performance and profitability
  • The role of customer satisfaction in promoting brand loyalty and advocacy
  • The effects of workplace flexibility on employee morale and productivity
  • The impact of employee wellness programs on absenteeism and healthcare costs
  • The role of data analytics in business decision-making and strategy formulation
  • The effects of brand personality on consumer behavior and perception
  • The impact of social media marketing on brand awareness and customer engagement
  • The role of organizational justice in promoting employee satisfaction and retention
  • The effects of corporate branding on employee motivation and loyalty
  • The impact of online advertising on consumer behavior and purchasing decisions
  • The role of corporate entrepreneurship in promoting innovation and growth
  • The effects of cultural intelligence on cross-cultural communication and business success
  • The impact of workplace diversity on customer satisfaction and loyalty
  • The role of ethical leadership in promoting employee trust and commitment
  • The effects of job stress on employee health and well-being
  • The impact of supply chain disruptions on business operations and financial performance
  • The role of organizational learning in promoting continuous improvement and innovation
  • The effects of employee engagement on customer satisfaction and loyalty
  • The impact of brand extensions on brand equity and consumer behavior
  • The role of strategic alliances in promoting business growth and competitiveness
  • The effects of corporate transparency on stakeholder trust and loyalty
  • The impact of digital transformation on business models and competitiveness
  • The role of business ethics in promoting corporate social responsibility and sustainability
  • The effects of employee empowerment on job satisfaction and organizational performance.
  • The role of corporate governance in mitigating unethical behavior in multinational corporations.
  • The effects of cultural diversity on team performance in multinational corporations.
  • The impact of corporate social responsibility on consumer loyalty and brand reputation.
  • The relationship between organizational culture and employee engagement in service industries.
  • The impact of globalization on the competitiveness of small and medium enterprises (SMEs).
  • The effectiveness of performance-based pay systems on employee motivation and productivity.
  • The relationship between innovation and corporate performance in the pharmaceutical industry.
  • The impact of digital marketing on the traditional marketing mix.
  • The role of emotional intelligence in leadership effectiveness in cross-cultural teams.
  • The relationship between corporate social responsibility and financial performance in the banking sector.
  • The impact of diversity management on employee satisfaction and retention in multinational corporations.
  • The relationship between leadership style and organizational culture in family-owned businesses.
  • The impact of e-commerce on supply chain management.
  • The effectiveness of training and development programs on employee performance in the retail sector.
  • The impact of global economic trends on strategic decision-making in multinational corporations.
  • The relationship between ethical leadership and employee job satisfaction in the healthcare industry.
  • The impact of employee empowerment on organizational performance in the manufacturing sector.
  • The relationship between corporate social responsibility and employee well-being in the hospitality industry.
  • The impact of artificial intelligence on customer service in the banking industry.
  • The relationship between emotional intelligence and employee creativity in the technology industry.
  • The impact of big data analytics on customer relationship management in the telecommunications industry.
  • The relationship between organizational culture and innovation in the automotive industry.
  • The impact of internationalization on the performance of SMEs in emerging markets.
  • The effectiveness of performance appraisal systems on employee motivation and retention in the public sector.
  • The relationship between diversity management and innovation in the pharmaceutical industry.
  • The impact of social entrepreneurship on economic development in developing countries.
  • The relationship between transformational leadership and organizational change in the energy sector.
  • The impact of online customer reviews on brand reputation in the hospitality industry.
  • The effectiveness of leadership development programs on employee engagement in the finance industry.
  • The relationship between corporate social responsibility and employee turnover in the retail sector.
  • The impact of artificial intelligence on the recruitment and selection process in the technology industry.
  • The relationship between organizational culture and employee creativity in the fashion industry.
  • The impact of digital transformation on business models in the insurance industry.
  • The relationship between employee engagement and customer satisfaction in the service industry.
  • The impact of mergers and acquisitions on organizational culture and employee morale.
  • The effectiveness of knowledge management systems on organizational performance in the consulting industry.
  • The impact of social media marketing on brand loyalty in the food and beverage industry.
  • The relationship between emotional intelligence and customer satisfaction in the airline industry.
  • The impact of blockchain technology on supply chain management in the logistics industry.
  • The relationship between corporate social responsibility and employee engagement in the technology industry.
  • The impact of digitalization on talent management practices in the hospitality industry.
  • The effectiveness of reward and recognition programs on employee motivation in the manufacturing industry.
  • The impact of industry 4.0 on organizational structure and culture in the aerospace industry.
  • The relationship between leadership style and team performance in the construction industry.
  • The impact of artificial intelligence on financial forecasting and decision-making in the banking sector.
  • The relationship between corporate social responsibility and customer loyalty in the automotive industry.
  • The impact of virtual teams on employee communication and collaboration in the pharmaceutical industry.
  • The impact of remote work on employee productivity and job satisfaction
  • The effects of social media marketing on customer engagement and brand loyalty
  • The role of artificial intelligence in streamlining supply chain management
  • The effectiveness of employee training and development programs on organizational performance
  • The impact of diversity and inclusion initiatives on organizational culture and employee satisfaction
  • The role of corporate social responsibility in enhancing brand reputation and customer loyalty
  • The effects of e-commerce on small businesses and local economies
  • The impact of big data analytics on marketing strategies and customer insights
  • The effects of employee empowerment on organizational innovation and performance
  • The impact of globalization on the hospitality industry
  • The effects of corporate governance on organizational performance and financial outcomes
  • The role of customer satisfaction in driving business growth and profitability
  • The impact of artificial intelligence on financial forecasting and risk management
  • The effects of corporate culture on employee engagement and retention
  • The role of green marketing in promoting environmental sustainability and brand reputation
  • The impact of digital transformation on the retail industry
  • The effects of employee motivation on job performance and organizational productivity
  • The role of customer experience in enhancing brand loyalty and advocacy
  • The impact of international trade agreements on global business practices
  • The effects of artificial intelligence on customer service and support
  • The role of organizational communication in facilitating teamwork and collaboration
  • The impact of corporate social responsibility on employee motivation and retention
  • The effects of global economic instability on business decision-making
  • The role of leadership styles in organizational change management
  • The impact of social media influencers on consumer behavior and purchasing decisions
  • The effects of employee well-being on organizational productivity and profitability
  • The role of innovation in driving business growth and competitive advantage
  • The impact of digital marketing on consumer behavior and brand perception
  • The role of strategic planning in organizational success and sustainability
  • The impact of e-commerce on consumer privacy and data security
  • The effects of corporate reputation on customer acquisition and retention
  • The role of diversity and inclusion in organizational creativity and innovation
  • The impact of artificial intelligence on customer relationship management
  • The effects of customer feedback on product development and innovation
  • The role of employee job satisfaction in reducing turnover and absenteeism
  • The impact of global competition on business strategy and innovation
  • The effects of corporate branding on customer loyalty and advocacy
  • The role of digital transformation in enhancing organizational agility and responsiveness
  • The effects of employee empowerment on customer satisfaction and loyalty
  • The role of entrepreneurial leadership in driving business innovation and growth
  • The impact of digital disruption on traditional business models
  • The effects of organizational culture on innovation and creativity
  • The role of marketing research in developing effective marketing strategies
  • The impact of social media on customer relationship management
  • The effects of employee engagement on organizational innovation and competitiveness
  • The role of strategic partnerships in promoting business growth and expansion
  • The impact of global trends on business innovation and entrepreneurship

About the author

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Muhammad Hassan

Researcher, Academic Writer, Web developer

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Business Research

  • Company Information
  • Annual Reports
  • Competitors
  • Financial Information
  • Financial Ratios
  • Investment Reports
  • Mission Statement
  • Leadership Information
  • Finding or Creating SWOT Analyses
  • Using Hoovers to Create Lists
  • Industry Overviews
  • Trends and Projections
  • Major Companies

Market Research

  • Marketing Plans
  • Market Share
  • Market Size
  • Demographics/Psychographics
  • Product Reviews
  • Products/Brands
  • Business Plans
  • Case Studies
  • Country Information
  • NAICS Codes

This Business Research Tutorial contains information on the following:

Company Research

  • Finding Company Information
  • Finding a Company's Annual Report
  • Finding a Company's Competitors
  • Finding Financial Ratios for Companies
  • Finding Investment/Analyst Reports
  • Finding a Company's Mission Statement
  • Finding a Company's Leadership Information
  • Using Hoovers to Create Company Lists

Industry Research

  • Finding Industry Overviews
  • Finding Industry Trends and Projections
  • Finding Financial Ratios for Industries
  • Finding the Major Companies in an Industry
  • Conducting Market Research
  • Creating a Marketing Plan
  • Finding Market Share Information
  • Finding Market Size Information
  • Finding Demographic or Psychographic Information

Product Research

  • Finding Product Reviews
  • Finding a Company's Products/Brands

Other Business Research

  • Creating a Business Plan
  • Finding Case Studies
  • Finding Country Information
  • Next: Company Research >>
  • Last Updated: Jun 3, 2024 2:46 PM
  • URL: https://libguides.umgc.edu/business-research

Christensen Institute logo (white)

Jobs to Be Done Theory

The theory that helps innovators understand how and why people make decisions.

Target illustration

Jobs to Be Done is a lens that reveals the circumstances—or forces—that drive people and organizations toward and away from decisions. 

While conventional marketing focuses on market demographics or product attributes, Jobs to Be Done Theory (JTBD or Jobs Theory) goes beyond superficial categories to expose the functional, social, and emotional dimensions that explain why people make the choices they do. 

Everyone has Jobs to Be Done in their lives—the progress they’re trying to make as they strive toward a goal or aspiration within particular circumstances.

We call these Jobs because just as people hire contractors to help them build houses or lawyers to build a case, people “hire” products or services when “jobs” arise in their lives.

Forces of Progress

Unique Insight

People don’t simply buy or pick products or services; they pull them into their lives to make progress.

What’s the value of applying a Jobs to Be Done Theory lens? And how does it compare to using demographic data, market assumptions, and competitive analyses? Check out our video to find out.

Case Studies

Condominium sales.

A decade ago, Bob Moesta , was hired to help bolster sales of new condominiums for a Detroit-area building company. The company had targeted retirees and divorced single parents with prices that appealed to that segment with high-end touches like granite countertops and stainless steel appliances to give a sense of luxury. Lots of time and money were invested in a sales team and marketing campaigns.

The units got lots of foot traffic, but few visits ended up converting to sales. Maybe bay windows would be better? That’s what focus groups said, so the architect scrambled to add bay windows and other details to a few showcase units. Still, sales didn’t improve.

So, Moesta took a Jobs to Be Done approach: He set out to learn from the people who had bought units what job they were hiring the condominiums to do, and the conversations revealed an unusual clue: the dining room table. Prospective customers repeatedly told the company they didn’t need a formal dining room. And yet, in Moesta’s conversations with actual buyers, the dining room table came up repeatedly. “People kept saying, ‘As soon as I figured out what to do with my dining room table, then I was free to move,’” says Moesta. The table represented family. 

What was stopping buyers from making the decision to move, he hypothesized, was not a feature that the construction company had failed to offer, but rather, the anxiety that came with giving up something that had profound meaning. “I went in thinking they were in the business of new-home construction,” Moesta recalls. “But I realized they were in the business of moving lives.”

Illustration of furniture in a room

With this understanding of the Job to Be Done, dozens of small but important changes were made to the offering, including larger dining rooms. The company also focused on easing the anxiety of the move itself: It provided moving services, two years’ worth of storage, and a sorting room within the condo development where new owners could take their time making decisions about what to discard.

The new offering changed everything. The company raised prices by $3,500, which included (profitably) covering the cost of moving and storage. By 2007, when industry sales were down  49%, the developers had actually grown business by 25%.

Choosing college

Forty percent of first-time, full-time postsecondary students fail to graduate from four-year programs within six years. 74% of postsecondary students either transfer or drop out. And over 50% of alumni report that their college experience disappointed them.

In his years of immersion within education systems, Michael B. Horn came to understand that among the reasons for these poor outcomes is that institutions have failed to understand why people are attending college. Put another way, they haven’t considered the Job to Be Done that individuals have when they enroll. 

Alongside Bob Moesta , Horn conducted research over several years and drew on more than 200 detailed stories of students making the decision to attend some form of postsecondary education—from four-year universities and community colleges, to online universities and coding bootcamps—and analyzed the data to discover why people “hire” postsecondary education.

Illustration of college students walking

There are five Jobs to Be Done when hiring postsecondary education, and each is filled with functional and emotional forces that push and pull people to make decisions. For example, if I get another degree, I’ll get a raise that justifies the cost. Or if I go to college, then I can do what’s expected of me by my family. 

Today’s postsecondary schools and programs need to identify which Job they will serve and the experiences they must offer to help people be successful in that Job. In other words, they have to decide what to be good—and bad—at. Until then, the sector’s results will continue to disappoint—and students, employers, and society will pay the price.

Infographic: The 5 Jobs of Postsecondary Education

  • Help Me Get Into My Best School Students: Want the classic college experience in hopes of reinventing themselves. And yet, they’ve rarely thought about what they’ll do once enrolled. For them, making progress is all about getting accepted. Institutions: Many colleges are set up well for this Job. But skyrocketing costs are limiting the performance of a high-touch experience.
  • Help Me Do What’s Expected of Me Students: Looking to satisfy someone else’s expectations of them—like parents, friends, etc. They see school as the next logical step in their journey. They also don’t have—or can’t see—other options. They believe a degree will provide a safety net. Institutions: Consider counseling students into a gap year or structure yourself as a ‘transfer college’—a short-term destination that helps students get into the right school for them.
  • Help Me Get Away Students: Looking to get away from their day job; break a current habit; or leave home and their family, town, or a relationship. They’re looking for a fresh start with a support system and to check a box with a degree. Institutions: Revamp your first-year program to help students build passions and learn what they do—and don’t—like.
  • Help Me Step It Up Students: Want to leave their current circumstances and are ready to invest resources to improve prospects. They believe practical skills or certifications will help them get back on track. Institutions: Create pathways that move students through a clear, convenient fixed set of learning experiences that result in students’ desired outcomes.
  • Help Me Extend Myself Students: Looking to challenge themselves in pursuit of a bolder vision for their life. Life is OK, but they’re now able to make the time and allocate the budget to pursue practical skills or certifications. Institutions: Make your program as low risk as possible to encourage people to enroll and align program experiences with the highly emotional reasons students are attending.

Click the image to download and check out our resource library for additional content.

Infographic: The Five Jobs of Higher Education

These insights are part of Michael B. Horn and Bob Moesta’s book, Choosing College: How to Make Better Learning Decisions Throughout Your Life. Learn more here .

Other notable examples of Jobs to Be Done

Illustration of a milkshake

Morning milkshakes

A fast food restaurant discovered customers were hiring milkshakes for different Jobs throughout the day. In the morning, it was to satiate hunger, make their drive more interesting, and easily hold food in the car. In the afternoon, the shake was a treat for their kids. Turns out, the competition wasn’t other fast food milkshakes; rather,bananas and bagels vs. other kids’ treats.

Illustration of a bag of money

Tedious taxes

A tax software company thought customers wanted deeper insights on how to maximize their refund, so they built a robust platform. However, the complexity led to an increasing amount of time customers had to spend with the software. A Jobs to Be Done analysis revealed the main Job for many customers was to spend less time on their taxes—an insight that led to product simplification and resulted in an increase in sales. 

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Jobs to Be Done (JTBD) is a lens that reveals the circumstances—or forces—that drive people and organizations toward and away from decisions. Here are 3 critical considerations to keep in mind!

A person or organization can have multiple “jobs”

Jobs incorporate functional, social, and emotional forces at play in decision-making.

Example: A person hiring a new home may have the job: “Help me have a space large enough for my expanding family” (functional). Their job may also be: “Help me feel like I have achieved a milestone in my life” (emotional).

Jobs can change over time or as needs or goals are met or unmet.

Circumstances are subject to change.

Example: When a school district implements a new technology, the job of leadership could be: “Help me remain compliant with state funding.” Over time, as the district discovers best practices and increasing teacher approval of the tech toward improving student outcomes, the district’s job may change to: “Help me be an innovative leader among districts in my state.”

Jobs is not asking why someone made their decision.

JTBD methodology is about uncovering a story and discovering underlying circumstances common across specific groups of individuals.

Example: Standard market research may ask someone why they purchase a Milkshake from a drive-through, and answers typically focus on flavor. However, JTBD may reveal that the circumstances driving decision-making in many customers’ days are, in fact: “Help me relieve stress with an easy-to-hold snack.”

Infographic: 3 Critical Must-Knows about Jobs To Be Done Theory

At the Clayton Christensen Institute, we’re using Jobs to Be Done Theory to:

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Help Nigerians access electricity

Nigeria has the largest energy deficit in the world. Because solar energy is affordable long-term and renewable, it’s  considered one of the main ways Nigeria could reach its electricity goals. But adoption of solar energy is slow-going. Understanding why solar energy adoption isn’t happening as quickly as one would expect through the lens of Jobs to Be Done will help innovators better address these barriers and develop solar products and services that better fit the functional, emotional, and social needs of Nigerians.

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Support innovative health care business leaders

What do people really want from health care? In her podcast, “Life-Centered Health Care,” Ann Somers Hogg chats with Jay Gerhart, Vice President, Innovation Engine at Atrium Health about how understanding patients’, consumers’, and customers’ Jobs to Be Done can help health care providers and leaders understand what their patients really want.

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Understand the growing demand for microschools

Public school districts across the US have lost over one million students since 2020. Meanwhile, novel educational models—such as microschools and hybrid homeschooling—have more than doubled their enrollments. What’s driving families to new learning environments? Interviews with parents who recently moved their children to microschools uncovered three Jobs to Be Done.

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Or check out our latest jobs to be done resources:, how antisemitism is changing how students choose college.

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The ultimate guide to research design for business.

17 min read To get the information you need to drive key business decisions and answer burning questions, you need a research methodology that works — and it all starts with research design. But what is it? In our ultimate guide to research design for businesses, we breakdown the process, including research methods, examples, and best practice tips to help you get started.

If you have a business problem that you’re trying to solve — from product usage to customer engagement — doing research is a great way to understand what is going wrong.

Yet despite this, less than 40% of marketers use consumer research to drive decisions [1] .

So why are businesses missing out on vital business insights that could help their bottom line?

One reason is that many simply don’t know which research method to use to correctly investigate their problem and uncover insights.

This is where our ultimate guide to research design can help. But first…

What is research design?

Research design is the overall strategy (or research methodology) used to carry out a study. It defines the framework and plan to tackle  established problems  and/or questions through the collection, interpretation, analysis, and discussion of data.

While there are several types of research design (more on that later), the research problem defines which should be used — not the other way around. In working this way, researchers can be certain that their methods match their aims — and that they’re capturing useful and actionable data.

For example, you might want to know why sales are falling for a specific product. You already have your context and other research questions to help uncover further insights. So, you start with your research problem (or problem statement) and choose an approach to get the information you need.

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Key considerations before a research project

After you have your research problem and research questions to find out more information, you should always consider the following elements:

  • Do you want to use a qualitative or quantitative approach ?
  • What type of research would you like to do (e.g. — create a survey or conduct telephone interviews)?
  • How will you choose your population and sample size fairly?
  • How will you choose a method to collect the data for ease of operation? The research tool you use will determine the validity of your study
  • How will you analyse data after collection to help the business concern?
  • How will you ensure your research is free from bias and neutral?
  • What’s your timeline?
  • In what setting will you conduct your research study?
  • Are there any challenges or objections to conducting your research — and if so, how can you address them?

Ultimately, the data received should be unambiguous, so that the analysts can find accurate and trustworthy insights to act upon. Neutrality is key!

Types of approaches in research design

There are two main approaches to research design that we’ll explore in more detail — quantitative and qualitative.

Qualitative research design

Qualitative research designs tend to be more flexible and inductive (broad generalisations rather than specific observations), allowing you to adjust your approach based on the information you find throughout the research process. It looks at customer or prospect data (X data).

For example, if you want to generate new ideas for content campaigns, a qualitative approach would make the most sense. You can use this approach to find out more about what your audience would like to see, the particular challenges they are facing (from a business perspective), their overall experiences, and if any topics are under-researched.

To put it simply, qualitative research design looks at the whys and hows — as well as participants’ thoughts, feelings, and beliefs. It seeks to find reasons to explain decisions using the data captured.

However, as the data collected from qualitative research is typically written rather than numerical, it can be difficult to quantify information using statistical techniques.

When should you use qualitative research design?

It is best used when you want to conduct a detailed investigation of a topic to understand a holistic view. For example, to understand cultural differences in society, qualitative research design would create a research plan that allowed as many people from different cultures to participate and provided space for elaboration and anecdotal evidence.

If you want to incorporate a qualitative research design, you may choose to use methods like semi-structured focus groups,  surveys  with open-ended questions, or  in-depth interviews  in person or on the phone.

Quantitative research design

Quantitative research design looks at data that helps answer the key questions beginning with ‘Who’, ‘How’, ‘How many’ and ‘What’. This can include business data that explores operation statistics and sales records and quantifiable data on preferences.

Unlike qualitative research design, quantitative research design can be more controlled and fixed. It establishes variables, hypotheses, and correlations and tests participants against this knowledge. The aim is to explore the numerical data and understand its value against other sets of data, providing us with a data-driven way to measure the level of something.

When should you use quantitative research design?

If you want to quantify attitudes, opinions, behaviours, or any other defined variable (and general results from a large sample population), a quantitative approach is a way to go.

You could use quantitative research to validate findings from qualitative research. One provides depth and insight into the whys and hows, while the other delivers data to support them.

If you want to incorporate a quantitative research design, you may choose to use methods like secondary research collection or surveys with closed-ended questions.

Now that you know the differences between the two research approaches ( though you can find out more ), we can go further and address their sub-categories.

Research methods: the subsets of qualitative and quantitative research

Depending on the aim/objective of your research, there are several research methods (for both qualitative and quantitative research) for you to choose from:

Types of quantitative research design:

  • Descriptive –  provides information on the current state of affairs, by observing participants in a natural situation
  • Experimental  – provides causal relationship information between variables within a controlled situation
  • Quasi-experimental  – attempts to build a cause and effect relationship between an independent variable and a dependent variable
  • Correlational  – as the name suggests, correlational design allows the researcher to establish some kind of relation between two closely related topics or variables

Types of qualitative research design:

  • Case studies  – a detailed study of a specific subject (place, event, organization)
  • Ethnographic research  – in-depth observational studies of people in their natural environment (this research aims to understand the cultures, challenges, motivations and settings of those involved)
  • Grounded theory  – collecting rich data on a topic of interest and developing theories inductively
  • Phenomenology  – investigating a phenomenon or event by describing and interpreting the shared experiences of participants
  • Narrative research  – examining how stories are told to understand how participants perceive and make sense of their experiences

Other subsets of qualitative and quantitative research design

  • Exploratory  – explores a new subject area by taking a holistic viewpoint and gathering foundational insights
  • Cross-sectional  – provides a snapshot of a moment in time to reflect the state
  • Longitudinal  – provides several snapshots of the same sample over a period to understand causal relationships
  • Mixed methods  – provide a bespoke application of design subsets to create more precise and nuanced results
  • Observational  – involves observing participants’ ongoing behavior in a natural situation

Let’s talk about these research methods in more detail.

Experimental

As a subset of  quantitative  research design types, experimental research design aims to control variables in an experiment to test a hypothesis. Researchers will alter one of the variables to see how it affects the others.

Experimental research design provides an understanding of the causal relationships between two variables – which variable impacts the other, to what extent they are affected, and how consistent is the effect if the experiment is repeated.

To incorporate experimental research design, researchers create an artificial environment to more easily control the variables affecting participants. This can include creating two groups of participants – one acting as a control group to provide normal data readings, and another that has a variable altered. Therefore, having representative and random groups of participants can give better results to compare.

Sample population split into intervention and control groups

Image source: World Bank Blogs

Descriptive

Descriptive research design is a subset of  qualitative  design research and, unlike experimental design research, it provides descriptive insights on participants by observing participants in an uncontrolled, geographically-bound natural environment.

This type gives information on the current state of participants when faced with variables or changing circumstances. It helps answer who, what, when, where, and how questions on behaviour, but it can’t provide a clear understanding of the why.

To incorporate a descriptive research design, researchers create situations where observation of participants can happen without notice. In capturing the information, researchers can analyse data to understand the different variables at play or find additional research areas to investigate.

Exploratory

Exploratory research design aims to investigate an area where little is known about the subject and there are no prior examples to draw insight from. Researchers want to gain insights into the foundational data (who, what, when, where, and how) and the deeper level data (the why).

Therefore, an exploratory research design is flexible and a subset of both  quantitative  and  qualitative  research design.

Like descriptive research design, this type of research method is used at the beginning stages of research to get a broader view, before proceeding with further research.

To incorporate exploratory research design, researchers will use several methods to gain the right data. These can include focus groups, surveys, interviews in person or on the phone, secondary desk research, controlled experiments, and observation in a natural setting.

Cross-sectional

Just like slicing through a tomato gives us a slice of the whole fruit, cross-sectional research design gives us a slice representing a specific point in time. Researchers can observe different groups at the same time to discover what makes the participant behaviour different from one another and how behaviour correlates. This is then used to form assumptions that can be further tested.

There are two types to consider. In descriptive cross-sectional research design, researchers do not get involved or influence the participants through any controls, so this research design type is a subset of  quantitative  research design. Researchers will use methods that provide a descriptive (who, what, when, where, and how) understanding of the cross-section. This can be done by survey or observation, though researcher bias can be an undesirable outcome if the method is not conscious of this.

Analytical cross-sectional research design looks at the why behind the outcome found in the cross-section, aligning this as a subset of  qualitative  research design. This understanding can be gained through emailed surveys. To gain stronger insights, group sample selection can be altered from a random selection of participants to researchers selecting participants into groups based on their differences.

Since only one cross-section is taken, this can be a cheaper and quicker way to carry out research when resources are limited. Yet, no causal relationships can be gained by comparing data across time, unlike longitudinal research design.

Longitudinal

Longitudinal research design takes multiple measures from the same participants or groups over an extended period. These repeated observations enable researchers to track variables, identify correlations and see if there are causal relationships that can confirm hypothesis predictions.

As the research design is focused on understanding the why behind the data, this is a subset of  qualitative  research design. However, the real-time data collection at each point in time will also require analysis based on the quantitative markers found through  quantitative  research design.

Researchers can incorporate longitudinal research design by using methods like panel studies for collecting primary data first-hand. The study can be retrospective (based on event data that has already occurred) or prospective (based on event data that is yet to happen).

While being the most useful method to get the data you need to address your business concern, this can be time-consuming and there can be issues with maintaining the integrity of the sample over time. Alternatively, you can use existing data sets to provide historical trends (which could be verified through a cross-sectional research design).

Mixed methods

Mixed methods aim to provide an advanced and bespoke response to solving your business problem. It combines the methods and subsets above to create a tailored method that gives researchers flexibility and options for carrying out research.

The mixed-method research design gives a thorough holistic view of the layers of data through  quantitative  and  qualitative subset design methods. The resulting data is strengthened by the application of context and scale (quantitative) in alignment with the meaning behind behaviour (qualitative), giving a richer picture of participants.

Mixed method research design is useful for getting greater ‘texture’ to your data, resulting in precise and meaningful information for analysis. The disadvantages and boundaries of a single subset can be offset by the benefits of using another to complement the investigation.

This subset does place more responsibility on the researcher to apply the subset designs appropriately to gain the right information. The data is interpreted and assessed by the researcher for its validity to the end results, so there is potential for researcher bias if they miss out on vital information that skews results.

Visual Graphs of mixed methods

Image Source: Full Stack Researcher

Find the research design method(s) that work for you

No matter what information you want to find out — there’s a research design method that’s right for you.

However, it’s up to you to determine which of the methods above are the most viable and can deliver the insight you need. Remember, each research method has its advantages and disadvantages.

It’s also important to bear in mind (at all times), the key considerations before your research project:

  • Do you want to use a qualitative or quantitative approach?
  • Are there any challenges or objections to conducting your research — and if so, how can you address them?.

But if you’re unsure about where to begin, start by answering these questions with our decision tree:

research design diagram

Image Source: Research Gate

If you need more help, why not try speaking to one of our Qualtrics team members?

Our team of experts can help you with all your  market research  needs — from designing your study and finding respondents, to fielding it and reporting on the results.

[1] https://www.thinkwithgoogle.com/consumer-insights/consumer-trends/marketing-consumer-research-statistics/

eBook: How to get inclusive research design right

Related resources

Market intelligence 9 min read, qualitative research questions 11 min read, ethnographic research 11 min read, business research methods 12 min read, qualitative research design 12 min read, business research 10 min read, qualitative research interviews 11 min read, request demo.

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