To be clear, customer research questions are not the literal questions we ask the customer; they are the things we want to know.
For example, we might want to know, “How satisfied are our customers with our current mobile shopping experience?” or, “What are the most important factors to our customers when deciding whether or not to do business with us?” or a hundred other things.
Some research questions may relate to all customer types, while others may be specific to only one.
Of course, even questions that are the same for all customer types may have very different answers depending on the segment.
For example, you may decide that it’s helpful to understand how the different types of Microsoft customers make the decision to buy Microsoft products.
However, the way a Fortune 500 company decides to buy a six-figure license for enterprise software is probably quite different from how a teenager decides to buy an Xbox.
STARTER SET OF RESEARCH QUESTIONS
What knowledge about the customer would be helpful in crafting a delightful and strategically effective customer experience for your business?
The answers will vary somewhat based on your industry, but here is a starter set. It’s rare to be conducting customer research and not be interested in many of these themes.
FOR EACH TYPE OF CUSTOMER:
- What are their goals and desires?
- What are their fears and pet peeves?
- What unmet needs do they have in their life?
- Have they ever heard of your brand? What do they think of you?
- How do they feel about your competitors? Your industry overall?
- Why do they buy your products or services today compared to alternatives? Or why do they not buy?
- What is their experience and level of satisfaction through each stage of the lifecycle of a purchase (gaining awareness, shopping, buying, using your product, getting support, etc.)?
- What are their preferences in terms of channels of interaction (web, mobile, phone, in-person, etc.)?