Market Research VS Consumer Research: 5 Major Differences

Market Research VS Consumer Research: 5 Major Differences

The two terms are often used interchangeably, confusing new researchers. Consumer Research is connected with market research, yet both of them are different. 

In this blog, we will compare and contrast the two terms with their pros and cons. Browse till the end to get absolute info on the procedure of consumer and market research and which one may be best for your business. Let’s dive in: 


What is Market Research?

Market research is the systematic gathering, recording, and analysis of data about customers and competitors. Its primary objective is to understand various aspects of a market, including customer preferences, behaviours, and trends, as well as the competitive landscape. 


This information helps businesses make informed decisions about product development, marketing strategies, pricing, etc. Market research methods can range from surveys and focus groups to data analysis of sales figures. 

What is Consumer Research?

Consumer research primarily revolves around understanding the behaviours, preferences, needs, and desires of individual consumers. It delves into the psychological aspects that influence consumer decision-making processes. 


Consumer research often involves techniques such as polls, surveys and interviews to gather insights. The goal is to gain a deep understanding of consumers' motivations and attitudes towards products or services.

Also Read: What are Consumer Insights: Meaning, Examples and Scope

Differences between Market Research and Consumer Research

Distinctions between consumer research and market research lie in their focus, scope, and methodologies. Here are five major differences:

  1. Focus

Consumer Research: Looks closely at what individual consumers like, why they buy certain things, and how they feel about products or services.

Market Research: Takes a broader view, looking at things like who the customers are, what they buy, how much they spend, and what influences their choices.

  1. Scope

Consumer Research: Zooms in on specific groups of people or individuals to understand their preferences and behaviours.

Market Research: Looks at the big picture, considering everything from customers to competitors to overall industry trends.

  1. Methodologies

Consumer Research: Uses methods like surveys, interviews, or observing people to understand what they think and do.

Market Research: Uses a mix of techniques, like surveys, data analysis, and talking to people, to get a complete picture of the market.

Also Read: The Future of Market Research: AI & Advanced Analytics

  1. Objective

Consumer Research: Helps improve products, advertising, and customer experiences by understanding what individual customers want.

Market Research: Guides overall business decisions by giving a sense of the market landscape, including customer segments, competitors, and trends.

  1. Application

Consumer Research: Used mainly for making products better, creating ads that speak to customers, and making sure they're happy.

Market Research: Used across the board, from marketing to sales to deciding where to expand the business, to understand the market and make smart decisions.

Both of these methods give you a deeper understanding of your industry. In my opinion, conducting market research should be a priority for any business. This would also include major segments of consumer research as well to give a fair idea of the direction you are heading. 

With that being said, let’s wrap this blog! Tell us in the comments if you have ever conducted market or consumer research and how was your experience. 

Check out this blog on: Top 10 Market Research Tools and Software