Market research is an excellent way for businesses to learn more about their target market and collect useful data that enables them to make better decisions. However before you start to create a survey and publish it – you should be aware of some of the more common mistakes that could have a negative impact on its results.


1. Leading Questions


One of the most common mistakes of all would have to be leading questions. Essentially these are questions that are worded in a way that sways or prejudices the responders in some fashion. That in turn can affect their answers, and make the data that you gather less reliable. For example a question like, “How small was Dave’s contribution?” automatically implies that Dave did not contribute much. However if it was worded as, “How would you describe Dave’s contribution?” the question would be more neutral.


2. Small Sample Sizes


If you want the data from your market research to be accurate, you must make sure its sample size isn’t too small. A

large sample size is important

when dealing with any statistics as provides a more accurate average and makes it easier to identify outliers. As far as your market research is concerned, that will help ensure that the data isn’t too inaccurate because of a few careless answers or mistakes. While there is no specific number that you need to hit as far as the sample size goes – the larger it is, the more reliable your market research will be.


3. Unclear Questions or Answers


Clarity is important in your surveys. If responders aren’t able to easily understand both your questions and any answer choices that are available, you will end up with lots of bad responses. To avoid this mistake you should carefully proofread your survey, and maybe even get someone else to give it a one over to see what they think. Additionally you should try to ensure none of the answers overlap with one another or are ambiguous in any way.


4. Imbalanced Answer Choices


In the same way leading questions can affect the answers in your market research, so too can imbalanced answer choices. The difference is that in this case it is the answers that sway or prejudice the responses. It is easiest to see imbalanced answers in multiple-choice or Likert scale ratings that have more positive options than negative (or vice versa). That can immediately increase the likelihood that responders end up picking one of those choices. When deciding between 4, 5, 6 and 7 point Likert scale examples, to keep proper balance it’s advisable to use uneven number of choice and to provide one neutral choice.


5. Combined Questions


Another big mistake that is often seen in business market research surveys is when the questions are combined. Because of that the answer to the question may not represent the intent of the responder. For example if the question is, “Which service has the best price and benefits?” some responders may pick a service that they feel has the best price, while others may pick the one that they feel has the best benefits. Separating combined questions so that they will distinct will make it more clear to responders what you actually want – and allow you to collect better data.




See how all of these mistakes can impact the results of your market research? Considering you are going to be relying on the data that you collect to make business decisions, it should be readily apparent how important it is to avoid them. Now that you know the most common mistakes in market research it should be easy enough to ensure you don’t expose your surveys to them – as long as you carefully check each and every survey. Author Mahendra BajiyaAuthor Mahendra Bajiya


Written By Mahendra Bajiya

Mahendra Bajiya works as a digital marketer and runs his own business at He has been published on numerous niche websites and has helped many businesses meet their needs when it comes to guest posting, content marketing, and article writing. To find out more visit his profiles at LinkedIn – Facebook - Twitter .

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