Home Innovation Insights

Get both the “What” and “Why” of your customers’ buying decisions.

Jon Violette
April 9, 2020

Discrete Choice in Qualitative Research—A Powerful Way to Determine the “Why” of Decision Dynamics

(This post was written in collaboration with Cathy Gwynn, a frequent partner with Home Innovation’s market research team.)

Most researchers associate discrete choice methodologies, such as Conjoint or MaxDiff, with surveys where the objective is to measure the “What” of buyer preference. But in qualitative research, where exploration is a common objective, discrete choice methodology can be applied to better understand the “Why” of decision dynamics and to identify what tradeoffs buyers are making when choosing building products or services. Home Innovation Research Labs offers clients this powerful way to explore decision making through discrete choice qualitative research.

The approach is particularly valuable during product development to:

  • help prioritize product attributes/features
  • identify pricing parameters
  • refine the overall value proposition

It can also be extremely useful when applied to existing product research to:

  • help assess competitive positioning
  • evaluate product improvement opportunities
  • uncover unmet needs

Other uses include gathering insight to structure service and support programs, or to explore the most effective ways to communicate features and benefits in marketing communications.

Research stock photo

This type of research is conducted as one-on-one in-depth interviews using an online platform where the moderator can take respondents through a series of choice exercises and explore how respondents think about the choices; identify what the trade-offs are in their minds; explore factors that influence their decisions; and identify what is most important to them. The qualitative discussion brings the choices to life and sets them in a real-world context. The analysis of choices both within and across respondents provides a derived measure of meaningfulness and influence. The overall combined analysis then provides clients with actionable insights.

Is your company seeking deeper insight into buyer decisions and trade-offs for building products or services? Are you interested in the trade-off metrics typically used with discrete choice study designs? Get in touch and let’s discuss your specific research goals and needs. We can help you with a Qualitative Discrete Choice study that is designed specifically to meet your objectives.

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