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What came first, the game-changing idea, or the customer insights that informed it?
In most successful businesses, it isn’t a chicken-or-the-egg dilemma, it’s clear that customer insights are the foundation you need to change the game.
But how do you gather customer insights that really… mean something? And what can you do with that information on their icks and ticks?
When businesses truly grasp their potential customers’ needs, they can stand out in the crowd, by saying the right things—not just by screaming the loudest. They create marketing campaigns that resonate, products that spark joy, and forge connections that go beyond a mere transaction.
But simply collecting this information isn’t the endgame. The next steps involve transforming these insights into actionable steps, painting a vivid picture of your brand’s future.
As we navigate through gathering customer insights, we’ll dive deep into techniques and strategies, from the traditional to the tech-savvy, to make sure you find your perfect fit for creating a customer journey that leads to happy and loyal customers.
Before we discuss how to gather these invaluable nuggets of information, let’s first clarify what customer insights are.
Customer insights are the deep truths about your customers (current or potential customers). They come in all shapes and sizes, just check these consumer insight examples.
They’re not just surface-level observations – these are profound understandings about your customers’ needs, desires, habits, and the reasons behind their buying choices.
When you gather customer insights, you learn what drives their behavior, and thus how you can influence or predict it, or play into it. That reason can be divided up into different reasons why customer insights are so vital:
Which consumer insights software is right for you?
We’ve put together a list of the consumer insights software that can help brands like yours make better decisions based on reliable intel.
There are several ways to discover valuable insights. We’ll look at a mix of methods and tools that cover a range of meaningful insights, from UX-related data to sentiment analysis.
Using online surveys remains a tried-and-true method. They allow you to ask specific questions at a large scale, getting to the heart of what your current and potential customers truly feel, and having the data to back it up.
One-on-one interactions can unearth deep, qualitative insights and give you quality customer feedback. By having candid conversations, you can delve into the motivations behind customer behavior and preferences.
By studying how consumers interact with your website, app, or product, you can derive insights about their preferences, habits, and pain points.
A more traditional approach, focus groups involve getting a small group of people together to discuss specific topics, offering rich qualitative data.
You don’t always have to ask directly. Consumers often voice their opinions, complaints, and praises on social media platforms. Monitoring these can provide a goldmine of insights. And social listening tools ensure you don’t have to have a full-time employee searching the web constantly.
Embedding quick and easy feedback forms on your website or after-service interactions can provide spontaneous insights directly from the user. You get to ask one or two questions, while their memory is still fresh and their emotions are still related to the experience they just had.
Your reviews aren’t just something to show off with, they provide a ton of information on what stands out for customers—the good, the bad and the indifferent.
This simple yet powerful metric helps you determine customer loyalty by asking one simple question: “How likely are you to recommend our product/service to a friend?”
Your sales and customer service teams interact with customers daily, and their experiences can offer invaluable insights. If you have people who offer technical support or are in any other way customer-facing employees, check in with them too. Even if they only have short interactions, such as delivery drivers have, they might be able to collect customer feedback that could transform the customer experience.
How to use insights from sales and customer service interactions:
By using tools that show where users click, move, and scroll on your site, you can get a visual representation of their behavior.
By presenting two versions of a webpage or ad to users, your creative team can determine which one performs better in terms of conversions or other metrics.
This qualitative method involves observing consumers in their natural environment to understand their habits, routines, and real-world challenges in relation to a product or service.
Using AI and machine learning, these tools analyze textual content from sources like social media, reviews, and more to determine the sentiment behind them, whether its positive, negative, or neutral. They’re often built into social listening tools, cutting the workload in half.
Regularly engage a group of selected customers for feedback. It’s a consistent way to gather insights as you introduce new products, services, or marketing efforts. In some cases it helps to work with the same panel consistently, to track their feedback over time.
Put yourself in the shoes of your customers. Hire individuals to interact with your brand – in-store, online, or via customer service – and report their experiences. This provides an unbiased view of customer interactions.
Use statistical algorithms and machine learning techniques to identify the likelihood of future outcomes based on historical data. It’s the closest thing to a trustworthy crystal ball.
Use technology to monitor where participants look when interacting with a website, ad, or product. This offers a deep understanding of what genuinely captures their attention. This is often combined with heatmaps and other UX research.
How to apply customer insights from eye-tracking studies:
Gather insights from partners or affiliates who promote your products. They often have unique insights based on their interactions with mutual customers.
Consumer insights aren’t just numbers or vague trends – they’re the unfiltered voices of your audience. By diving into this feedback, you can align your marketing endeavors more authentically with the people you are trying to serve. Collecting valuable insights is an ongoing conversation, not a one-time thing.
Using consumer insights also means shedding guesswork and increasing confidence across all departments. When your teams know what makes your audience tick, every product feature or brand message becomes more intentional.
For instance, an ad isn’t just visually pleasing but speaks directly to specific customer pain points or desires.
And it’s not just about advertising. When launching a new product, your teams can tap into previously collected insights to gauge whether that sparkly new feature will be a hit or miss. It speeds things up, and increases the chance of success.
Customer insights and data are everywhere, but how you collect them makes all the difference in quality. Using the right customer insights software will help you sift through the noise and get actionable insights, the kind that goes beyond what looks interesting in a report.
Choose a platform that is easy-to-understand, reliable, and provides expert research advice, like Attest. Our dedicated research experts always make sure all our clients—yes, regardless of the plan you choose—get the most valuable customer insights. If you’re keen to learn more about the tools out there, check out our guide on consumer insights software.
Choose your customer insights platform
Pick a platform that will help you gather reliable insights that’ll help you make smarter and more successful choices for your brand
Customer Research Manager
Nikos joined Attest in 2019, with a strong background in psychology and market research. As part of Customer Research Team, Nikos focuses on helping brands uncover insights to achieve their objectives and open new opportunities for growth.
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