Market Profiling & Industry Monitoring

What Is Market Profiling & Industry Monitoring?

Whether it’s before product launch or when you need advanced information about your market, profiling and monitoring research can provide clarity that allows for more accurate planning.

While primary, quantitative research is ideal for customized insights, there are instances when a Market Intelligence approach may provide value.

Market Profiling Research Methodology

Market Intelligence profiling leans heavily on existing or secondary sources, rather than primary research. These sources can range from industry journals and subscription databases to company websites and social media posts. The goal is to gather valid information on the dynamics, key themes and participants in a market.

When profiling a market, a variety of factors must be analyzed to gauge its competition intensity, attractiveness and profitability. Those factors may include:

1) Competition
This factor focuses on the number of competitors in a market and the level of rivalry between them. Competition is high when multiple businesses are equally selling a product or service, when the industry is growing, and when consumers can easily switch to a competitor’s offering for little cost.

2) Potential of new entrants into the industry
This factor examines how easy or difficult it is for competitors to enter the market. The easier it is for market entry, the greater the risk of a business losing its market share.

3) Power of suppliers
This analyzes how much power a business’s supplier has, especially how much control it has over the potential to raise prices. This factor provides an indication of profitability, since the fewer suppliers there are, the more power they have.

4) Power of customers
This factor examines the power of the consumer to affect pricing and quality. Consumers have more power when they are fewer in number and many sellers exist. Consumers also have more power when it is easy to switch from one company’s products or services to another.

5) Threat of substitute products
This looks at how easy it is for consumers to switch from one business’s product or service to that of a competitor. It considers how many competitors exist, how their prices and quality compare, and the market dominance of those competitors to determine if they can lower their costs further.

Market Segmentation Analysis Case Study

An example project involved a profile and segmentation for the U.S. department store market. For this research, Wakefield first identified the key players, products and drivers impacting the market. We then created a profile using the above framework.

Subsequently, a separate phase of research involved profiles in two areas:

• Major department stores

• Products sold in department stores

A combination of financial filings and access to pre-existing research provided sufficient information to determine the market shares for both department stores and products. For this type of market, Wakefield uncovered existing research from disparate sources. Industry groups, retailers and third-party subscription databases all held valuable information, which made verification and analysis a challenging yet feasible task.

Some of the notable findings from this analysis showed that the top player in the department store market had approximately 35% share, while six companies comprised more than 80% of the total market. For the products sold, we identified eight categories, with women’s clothing and footwear owning the largest market share.

Through the use of pre-existing data, Wakefield created an accurate depiction of a market and its constituents, providing relevant insights to help decision-making.

How Market Profiling Is Different

Wakefield Research’s Market Intelligence service uses existing information to examine the “lay of the land,” meaning the players, products, specifications and segments that comprise a market. Profiling can be a quick snapshot or a more extensive analysis incorporating themes such as motivations and barriers to entry.

Market Intelligence profiling can deliver value in a variety of ways:

• Profiling a target market prior to an important business meeting or strategy session

• Identifying opportunities in current or new markets

• Discovering key end-user industries or demographics

• Monitoring product offerings and trends

• Understanding the drivers and inhibitors within a market

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