Market tests are an important part of the product development process and are used to determine the interest of potential customers and check the market suitability of a product or service. They offer companies an opportunity to tailor their business model and products to the needs and preferences of their target group, thereby ensuring market success.

Proven methods for market tests

Market tests can be carried out in various ways. Proven methods include surveys, customer feedback and focus groups.

Surveys as market tests

Surveys are one of the oldest and most frequently used methods of market research. They offer a quick and cost-effective way to gather a large number of opinions. Surveys can be sent online or by post and can include questions about products, services, brand awareness and satisfaction. Surveys allow companies to capture the opinions and preferences of their target group quickly and cost-effectively.

Customer feedback provides valuable insights

Customer feedback is another way of collecting customers' opinions. This can be done via online forms, email or telephone. Customer feedback is valuable as it comes directly from customers, providing a deeper understanding of their needs and wants. Customer feedback is essential for companies that want to improve their products and services and ensure market success.

Focus groups are used for verification

Focus groups are another proven method of obtaining feedback from customers. They consist of a small group of customers who are asked about a specific topic. The discussions in the focus group can provide deep insights into the opinions and attitudes of customers and are a valuable method for obtaining feedback and thus gaining deep insights into their opinions, attitudes and needs.

Modern and innovative approaches to market testing

However, in addition to the well-known methods such as those mentioned above, there are also modern and innovative approaches that are suitable for market testing. Here are some alternative methods.

Landing pages are an easy way for a (simple) market test

Landing pages can help companies to carry out market tests by presenting a minimum viable product (MVP) on the landing page. An MVP is a product that contains only the core features needed to fulfill the purpose of the product. The landing page is a website designed specifically for a particular marketing campaign or target audience and usually does not contain a navigation bar or other distractions that could detract from conversion.

By creating a landing page with an MVP, companies can quickly and cost-effectively gather feedback from potential customers and test demand without having to develop a full product. If the landing page is well designed, companies can monitor customers' reactions to the MVP and gather valuable information about their preferences and needs. Companies can also track metrics such as clicks, conversion rate, average length of stay and bounce rate to see how users are interacting with the landing page and the MVP. If the feedback is negative and there is no demand, companies can quickly and cost-effectively discontinue the MVP or iterate a new version of the MVP with different parameters based on the data already gathered.

Crowdfunding for testing on a large group

Crowdfunding can also be used as a market test, as it gives companies the opportunity to present their ideas and projects directly to a large number of people, receiving both financial support and feedback from potential customers. Through crowdfunding platforms, companies can create a campaign and inform the public about their project by providing detailed information, images and videos. In this way, they can reach a wide range of potential customers and gather valuable feedback before investing in the development of the product or service.

Crowdfunding also allows companies to test interest in their product or service by setting the campaign target at a certain amount of capital. If the target is reached, this shows that there is sufficient demand to implement the project. However, if the target is not met, this may indicate that there is insufficient interest in the product or service and that companies may need to rethink their strategy or abandon the project altogether.

Another advantage of crowdfunding as a market test is that it offers a cost-effective way to test a new product or service without companies having to bear high development or marketing costs. Unlike traditional methods of market research or product testing, crowdfunding offers a way to test a product or service in the market at a very early stage of development. By sharing the vision and a concrete timetable, it is possible to distribute and pre-finance without the development having to be at an advanced stage.

Influencer marketing for market tests - does it work?

Influencer marketing can also be used as an effective way to test a new product or service and get feedback from potential customers. By engaging influencers to promote their products or services on their social networks or websites, companies can reach their audience in an authentic and direct way and gather valuable feedback in the process.

An influencer is usually a person with a large number of followers or fans on social media platforms such as Instagram, TikTok or YouTube. Companies can identify influencers who appeal to a target audience that resonates with their product or service and then ask them to promote the product or service.

By influencers sharing their experience with the product or service and encouraging their followers to try it, companies can gather valuable feedback from potential customers. They can observe how their target group reacts to the product or service, collect feedback and reviews and thus gain valuable insights about their customers.

Another advantage of influencer marketing as a market test is that companies can collect feedback from a wide range of people who may be their target audience. Influencers often have a loyal following and can have a wide reach, meaning that businesses can showcase their products or services to a wide audience and gather feedback from a variety of potential customers.

Surveys as advertisements in social media are already a popular means of market research

Using surveys as ads on social networks can be an effective way to conduct market testing. By using surveys in ads, companies can achieve a wider reach and ensure that the survey is shared with people who are interested in the product or topic in question.

The use of targeting tools can allow companies to target their surveys to a specific audience related to their product or service. This can help ensure that the survey is passed on to people who actually have an interest in the product or topic, ensuring greater relevance of the results.

Another way to use surveys as advertisements is to present the results of the survey directly in front of the target audience. This can help to increase the target group's interest in the product or topic and achieve a higher willingness to participate in the survey. The results of the survey can also be used for marketing purposes to raise awareness of the product or topic and attract potential customers.

Modern technologies enable completely new market tests

The use of modern technologies such as virtual reality (VR) can also be an effective way to conduct market tests. VR allows companies to test and demonstrate their products or services in a virtual environment before they are produced. This provides a cost-effective way to gather feedback from potential customers while providing an interactive experience.

By using VR, companies can offer their customers an immersive experience that allows them to test the product or service in a realistic environment. Potential customers can interact in a simulated environment and try out the product or service without having to actually produce it. This can help to obtain early feedback that can be used to improve the product or service before it is launched on the market.

Another benefit of using VR as a market testing tool is the ability to target the audience. VR technology allows companies to simulate different scenarios and environments to tailor their products or services to a specific target audience. This can help to gather feedback from potential customers who are actually interested in the product or service.

Which methods are suitable for SMEs?

Methods that are easy to implement and incur low costs are particularly suitable for SMEs. These approaches enable small and medium-sized companies to carry out market tests without having to invest large sums of money. By choosing the right method, they can quickly and easily obtain feedback from their potential customers and thus improve their business model and products.

But there is an even simpler way. SMEs are often characterized by a close relationship with their customers and know them well. It is therefore often the easiest way to communicate directly with customers instead of laboriously forming focus groups or panels. This can be done in various ways, but the best way is synchronous communication, such as via telephone or video call. This also offers the opportunity to have a positive impact on customer loyalty.

These questions will help you to evaluate market tests

We are aware that the topic is complex and touches on many aspects. We are therefore happy to offer you a free 30-minute sparring session on market tests. This offer is intended to provide you with "help with the questions" and support you in the planning and implementation of your market tests. Use this opportunity to rethink your strategy, discover new approaches and exploit the full potential of your products or services. We will be happy to go through these questions with you.

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Frequently asked questions about market tests for SMEs

A market test is a method of checking the demand and potential of a new product or service before investing a lot of time and money in its development. A market test helps to understand the needs and expectations of potential customers, analyze the competition, find the optimal pricing and validate the business model.

The aim of a market test is to find out whether a product or service will appeal to potential customers. The aim is to collect feedback and data in order to identify any problems and make improvements.

There are different ways to conduct a market test, depending on the goal, budget and stage of development of the product or service. Some common methods are: Surveys, interviews, focus groups, prototypes, landing pages, crowdfunding or pre-sales.

A market test offers SMEs many advantages, such as: risk minimization, customer loyalty, competitive advantage, innovation and growth. A market test enables SMEs to develop new products or services that are tailored to the needs of the market and stand out from the competition. A market test also promotes communication and feedback with customers, which leads to greater satisfaction and loyalty. A market test also supports the innovative capacity and growth of SMEs by identifying new opportunities and markets.

A market test also poses a number of challenges for SMEs, such as a lack of time and resources, data protection, legal certainty and quality control. A market test requires careful planning and execution, which takes time and resources. A market test must also comply with data protection and legal regulations, which may require expert advice. A market test must also ensure high quality in order to obtain a representative result and not damage the company's image.

The choice of the appropriate method for a market test depends on various factors, such as: the objective of the test, the stage of development of the product or service, the budget, the target group and the time available. There is no universal method for a market test; each method has its advantages and disadvantages. It is therefore important to adapt the method to the specific conditions and requirements of the test.

Defining the target group for a market test is an essential step for the success of the test. The target group should be described as precisely as possible in order to obtain a clear picture of potential customers. The target group should be segmented according to various criteria, such as demographic characteristics (age, gender, income, etc.), geographical characteristics (location, region, etc.), psychographic characteristics (interests, values, etc.) or behavioral characteristics (purchasing habits, usage behavior, etc.).

The design of a questionnaire for a market test is an important task in order to obtain relevant information from the target group. The questionnaire should be clearly formulated to avoid misunderstandings or bias. The questionnaire should also be short to keep the respondents' attention and motivation. The questionnaire should also contain a balanced mix of open and closed questions.

The duration of a market test can vary depending on the scope and objectives. As a rule, a market test lasts between a few weeks and a few months. However, there may also be longer market tests in order to observe customer behavior over a longer period of time.

The results of a market test are evaluated on the basis of predefined criteria and objectives. The data and feedback are analyzed in order to identify the strengths and weaknesses of the product or service and to make improvements.

Yes, a market test can also produce negative results that show that a product or service is not well received by potential customers or that there is no demand for it. In this case, the company may decide to cancel the project or make changes to improve the product or service.

The cost of a market test varies depending on the type and scope of the test. A simple test can be carried out with a relatively low budget, while larger and more complex tests can incur higher costs.

In summary, modern and alternative methods for conducting market tests offer companies an opportunity to tailor their business model and products to the needs of their target group and ensure market success. Methods that are easy to implement and cost little, such as landing pages or direct interviews, are particularly suitable for SMEs. It is worth thinking outside the box and trying out new and innovative approaches to achieve the best results.

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MORGEN is a specialized management consultancy that focuses on the development of new business models for medium-sized companies. In particular, it supports owner-managed companies in their future-proof transformation. Knowledge transfer is at the heart of its consulting activities, which is why the MORGEN Blog regularly publishes articles on key topics such as digitalization, transformation, customer centricity and sustainability.

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