Use of online surveys for market research to increase

The vast majority of marketers worldwide who conduct market research are expecting their companies' use of online data providers and online-access panels to increase in the next 12 months, according to The Online Research Barometer, a survey conducted by Greenfield Online-Ciao Surveys, reports MarketingCharts.

Some 82 percent of market researchers surveyed in North America and 87 percent in Europe predict that their use of online respondent providers will increase in the next 12 months. That's up from 76 percent and 85 percent, respectively, from November 2005, when the previous Online Research Barometer was last issued.

B2B research accounts for 34 percent and 25 percent of market research efforts in North America and Europe, respectively, according to the study:

Among other findings of the Online Research Barometer:

The two most important reasons for conducting market research online remained time, mentioned by 81 percent of North American market researchers and 78 percent of Europeans, and competitive pricing (76 percent and 75 percent, respectively).

North Americans were particularly interested in access to complex target sample groups (62 percent).

Europeans are particularly interested in the ability to access respondents internationally (57 percent).

Across North America and Europe, the ability to recruit large sample groups and the ability to use multi-media elements in questionnaires were also cited as important considerations for the use of online research.

The survey revealed differences in online research by industry sector:

Consumer goods remains the industry most using online research worldwide (83 percent in North America, 71 percent Europe).

In North America, Consulting, Banking/Finance/Insurance, Healthcare, Communication and Retail are also important markets.

In Europe, researchers are more likely to be conducting online studies for the Banking/Finance/Insurance, Telecommunications, and Technology industries.

European market researchers expect in the future to use less of other methodologies, such as telephone (30 percent) and face-to-face interviews (27 percent), in favor of online as a preferred research methodology.

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