Focus groups are a form of qualitative research aimed at exploring topics, mindsets, and perceptions. The group discussion is centered around a dialogue with the moderator and participants. A guide is structured to move participants through sections of the discussion.
Group sizes typically range from 4 to 12 participants and the discussion lasts between 60 minutes and 2 hours. Participants are paid between $75 and $250 depending on the level of customer you are seeking for the groups (e.g. general consumers or C-Level decision-makers). Online focus groups are also growing in popularity for these reasons.
Oftentimes a facility or conference center offers food and beverages to entice participation. This usually involves refreshments, light food, and snacks. Something as simple as water, soda, sandwiches, chips, and coffee. Particularly if the groups run later in the evening, people could use a jolt of caffeine.
The topic of this article is to help you choose or think about questions to ask as part of your moderator's or facilitator's guide. These questions are some examples of items to consider.
A customer focus group can help an organization dive deep and explore customer feedback beyond the quantitative measurable data acquired through a survey.
Questions to Ask in a Customer Focus Group
When it comes to a 60 minute to 2 hour focus group with customers there is a lot you can cover. As with any good qualitative market research, your questions should be focused on exploring topics. These include thought-provoking questions and open-ended questions to generate discussion and dialogue.
Here is an example of some questions to ask in a customer focus group:
- What word or phrase comes to mind when you think of the organization?
- What drives your negative, neutral, or positive opinion of the organization?
- How has your perception changed over the past 3 years? Why?
- What is the decision-making process like? Walk me through Steps 1 through 5.
- What has been your experience using our product or service?
- How can we improve our product or service for you?
- What is the best way for our organization to communicate with you? Why?
- What improvements can be made with our loyalty program?
- How do you most commonly use our website? Explain the path you take.
- How can we improve our website user experience (UX)?
- Who do you think is the largest competitors to our organization? Why?
- What do our competitors do better than our organization?
- What does our organization do better than our competitors?
- How do you use our mobile app? How can we improve the way-finding?
- Do you purchase more or less from our organization than in the past? Why?
- What motivates you to make a purchase from our organization? Explain.
Drive Research is a qualitative market research company located in Syracuse, NY. Our team manages focus group projects for our clients. This includes recruitment, moderating, facility booking, hosting, recordings, and reporting.
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