Product Prototype Surveys: What Are They and Why Do They Matter?

With any new product idea, it is crucial to determine the potential value your product may have and the impact it could have on the market before launching. This can easily be identified with product prototype surveys.

There is a good chance that you have already conducted initial research on the product landscape.

And, you have probably conducted extensive research throughout the development process for your product. 

That’s a lot of research! 

But don’t forget one of the most important steps in the process of developing your new product: prototype testing!

  • Will your product help users achieve their goals or solve their problems? 
  • Will users be able to identify the intended purpose of your product? 
  • Will users feel a real connection to your product? 

These are critical questions that should be asked and answered to ensure a successful product launch.

Our market research company is here to share some insight on how you can benefit from conducting a product prototype survey.

Blog: Product Prototype Surveys: What Are They and Why Do They Matter?

What is a Product Prototype Survey?

You have spent a great deal of time developing the perfect product, so don’t let it go to waste!

Instead, conduct prototype testing research to confirm the hypotheses generated throughout the new product development process.

Product prototype testing is a broad topic in market research, including both qualitative and quantitative research methods. Done properly, it allows you to obtain valuable feedback from potential users of your product. 

A few examples of more detailed prototype market research options include: 

You might be wondering whether qualitative or quantitative methods should be used for product prototype testing research. Our advice would be to use both!

Quantitative research, like an online survey, will provide you with statistically dependable data findings.

Combining those findings with the organic reactions and feedback obtained in a qualitative setting will put you in a better position to make important decisions regarding the launch of your product.

Recommended Reading: Hybrid Market Research: Combining Qualitative and Quantitative Methods for Better Results

Benefits of Product Prototype Surveys

The phrase “hindsight is 20/20” is all too common, and for good reason. But with this type of research, you can rest assured knowing that you took all the necessary steps to ensure a successful launch.

Any of the research options mentioned previously will provide you with invaluable information on any changes that may have to be made before finalizing and launching your product. 

Besides just confirming that your product actually works as intended, product prototype surveys can help you with things like...

  • Avoiding potential flaws with the product.
  • Identifying any missed opportunities from previously conducted new product research.
  • Ensuring that your product would be used for its intended purpose.
  • Confirming a continued need for the product on the market. 

Quote text: The phrase “hindsight is 20/20” is all too common, and for good reason. But with this type of research, you can rest assured knowing that you took all the necessary steps to ensure a successful launch.

Example Product Prototype Survey Questions

While each research endeavor is unique, there is a general structure that you can follow to ensure that you are capturing the best information from the potential users of your product.

For the sake of this blog post, Drive Research will break down a survey into three components.

Component 1

The first set of questions that you are going to want to ask those responding to the survey are going to be general questions regarding how the product comes across at a quick glance. 

This is where you can get real-time reactions, and get a better understanding of how potential users view and connect with your product. 

Our market research firm recommends first asking the following product prototype survey questions:

  • What do you think of when you see this product?
  • When do you think this product would be used, and for what purpose?
  • Can you see yourself using this product?
  • Does anything about this product confuse you? 

Once you have elicited some initial reactions, you can then dive into more detailed questions surrounding the usability and accessibility of the product. 

Component 2

In this area of the research, you’ll ask questions beneath the surface level that are likely to address how users are going to react given different scenarios with your product. 

First impressions are definitely important, but so is understanding how potential users will use and access your product. 

The following example questions are meant to be global, and adaptable.

Depending on your product, you can tailor them to better reflect what it is your product is intended to do.

In this section, product prototype research questions include:

  • Does using this product seem easier or more difficult than comparable products?
  • Would you feel comfortable/safe while using this product?
  • Does this product seem reliable? 
  • Do you see any potential issues that could arise while using this product?

Component 3

In the final phase of the research, you can ask any question that you feel is important but has yet to be answered. 

This is also an area where you can gauge any change in participants’ overall interest in your product after you had them dive deeper into the product’s usability and accessibility. 

It may be worthwhile to see if interest decreased with any further exploration of the product and its features, or to see if a participant caught something that you may have missed altogether! 

A few questions to include in this last section include:

  • Is there anything about this product that you would change?
  • Do you think the maker of this product can do anything to improve it?
  • After reviewing the product, does it seem easy to use?
  • Does this product seem applicable to you and your lifestyle?

Seeing as how research during new product development seems to never end, consider asking the participants of your prototype testing research if they would be interested in participating in more research as the product continues to be improved. 

Having a group of individuals who are able to continuously give feedback as the product develops could be quite valuable! 

Watch this video to learn 3-tips for product development research.

Conduct a Product Prototype Survey with Drive Research

Drive Research is a national market research company located in New York. Our team specializes in new product development research including product prototype surveys. 

Interested in learning more about our market research services? Drive Research works with brands across the country.

Contact our team through any of the four ways below!

  1. Message us on our website
  2. Email us at [email protected]
  3. Call us at 888-725-DATA
  4. Text us at 315-303-2040


Devan Grant

Devan's love for learning serves him well as a market research professional. With two years of both quantitative and qualitative research in the healthcare space under his belt, he knows what it takes to answer some of the toughest market research questions.

Learn more about Devan, here.

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