C2C retailers like Etsy and eBay are on the rise, even almost overtaking Amazon as the most patronized shops online. C2C retails have an added advantage since they interact with customers directly and have competitive leverage when it comes to understanding their target market.

For B2C retailers, it’s becoming more and more important to invest in better market research measures—measures that will provide a direct, faster line to their customer bases. Here are some ideas on how you as a B2C retailer can collect high-level customer feedback.

Use Insight Communities to Foster Relationships

Traditional market research data collection methods certainly play a hand in improving customer and business relationships, but if you want to take it a step further, it’s time to invest in insight communities.

Insight communities are online groups made up of the customers, employees, shareholders, and stakeholders that all play an important role in your company. With an insight community, these valuable contributors provide live and active feedback at every phase of the customer journey and product/service development.

Rather than gleaning insights from numbers, insight communities offer tangible and ongoing feedback from real people. Not to mention, you have an opportunity to engage directly and continue building relationships through ongoing communication.

Use Insight Communities for Speed

 This relatively new market research approach is not only great for building relationships but is also a great go-to when you need customer insight asap.

For example, you could take the time look through 50 pages of data, or you could engage with a customer in an online community and find the exact same information through a simple conversation.

Insight communities provide real-time, actionable insights you can leverage to make better business decisions right when you need to.

Use Insight Communities for Accuracy

Insight communities give you a way to engage in a continual two-way dialogue with consumers. This approach increases your understanding of your customers in ways you couldn’t get from raw data.

Does this mean you throw your CRM and big data tools out the window? No. When you look at the data from insight communities and your analytics programs together, you get a more comprehensive and accurate consumer story.

Wrap Up

You may be used to traditional data collection techniques and market research approaches, but now is the time to shake things up and adopt insight communities into your strategy. You’ll find you are able to make more of your customer insights, foster customer relationships, and get quicker and more accurate data right when you need it.