Supplier - a business which sells (or supplies) products to another business.
Customer - any person or organisation which buys or is supplied with a product by a business.
Consumer - the person who ultimately uses (or consumes) a product.
Markets - where buyers and sellers meet to exchange goods and services.
Understanding Customer Needs
Customer needs - the wants and desires of buyers of a product or the customer of a business.
Market reasearch - the process of gaining information about customers, competitors and market trends through collecting primary and secondary reasearch.
Primary (or field) reasearch - the gathering of new information, called primary data, which has not been collected before.
Survey - reasearch involving asking questions of people or organisations.
Respondents - those who provide data for a survey usually by answering questions in a questionnaire or interview.
Questionnaire - a list of questions to be answered by respondents, designed to gather information about consumers' tastes.
Focus group - in market reasearch, a group of people brought together to answer questions and discuss a product, brand or image.
MORE Understanding customer needs
Secondary (or desk) Reasearch - the process of gathering secondary data, which is information that has already been gathered such as sales records, government statistics, newspaper articles or reports from market reasearch groups.
Qualitative data - informationabout opinions, judgements and attitudes.
Quantitative data - data that can be expressed as numbers and can be statistically analysed.
Product Range - a group of similar products made by a business, like a number of different soap powders.
Brand - a named product which customers see as being different from other products and which they can associate or identify with.
Brand image - the idea/impression/image that customers have in their minds about the brand.
Added Value - the increased worth that a business creates for a product; it is the difference between what a business pays its suppliers and the price that it is able to charge for the service/product.
Unique selling point or USP - a characteristic of a product that makes it different from other similar products being sold in the market such as design, quality or image.
Francise - the right given by one business to another to sell goods or services using its name.
Franchisee - a business that agrees to manufacture, distribute or even provide a branded product, under licence by a franchisor.
Franchisor - the buisness that gives franchisees the right to sell its product, in return for a fixed payment or a royalty payment.