What is a Consumer Expenditure (CEX) Survey? | CEX Company

Tired of asking what a consumer expenditure survey (CEX) is? Drive Research, a CEX company, has the answer!

In the following post, Drive Research will answer:

  • What is a consumer expenditure survey (CEX)?
  • What are the benefits of a consumer expenditure survey (CEX)?
  • How is a consumer expenditure survey (CEX) used?
  • What is an example of a consumer expenditure survey (CEX)?

Drive Research, a CEX survey company, outlines the definition, benefits, and examples of conducting consumer expenditure research.

What is a Consumer Expenditure Survey (CEX)?

A well known consumer expenditure survey is conducted every year by the Bureau Labor of Statistics. The goal is to survey the population of the United States with high data reliability so citizens and organizations have a better understanding of the country in it's entirety. The data gathered helps define the level of important of products and services to the United States as a whole as well as segments of the population.

The Bureau Labor of Statistics however, is not the only organization which conducts consumer expenditure surveys. Organizations may use a consumer expenditure survey to better understand the importance of its products and/or services in comparison to competitors or other products/services entirely.

Typically, a consumer expenditure survey asks respondents about their purchasing habits as well as several demographic questions such as age, income, marital status, and level of education.

What are the Benefits of a Consumer Expenditure Survey (CEX)?

The goal of a consumer expenditure survey is to better understand the needs and spending power of a defined audience. This helps organizations answer several questions such as:

  • What are consumers purchasing?
  • How much are consumers spending?
  • How do specific demographics impact spending?
  • How much are specific demographics spending?

The answers to these questions help organizations understand their target market. Several strategies can be created in regards to pricing, positioning, packaging, marketing, advertising, and more with this information.

Learn more about the market research process and benefits of market research.

How is a Consumer Expenditure Survey (CEX) Used?

A consumer expenditure survey can be used by all types of organizations. For example, a not-for-profit may use this type of market research methodology to understand spending power of donors and develop donation strategic initiatives with fact-based evidence. Or, a technology company may use it to understand spending power and demographics of decision-makers.

A consumer expenditure survey helps take away ambiguity about who consumers are, what they are purchasing, and how much they are spending. The answers to these questions help organizations understand and develop ways to be included in consumers' spending.

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What is an Example of a Consumer Expenditure Survey (CEX)?

The Bureau Labor of Statistics consumer expenditure surveys are available online.

Here is an inside look at the topics covered in a consumer expenditure survey:

  • General housing characteristics
  • Utilities and fuels
  • Construction, repairs, alterations, and maintenance of property
  • Appliances and household equipment
  • Household item repairs, service contracts, and extended warranties
  • Home furnishings
  • Clothing
  • Rented, leased, and owned vehicles
  • Vehicle operating expenses
  • Health insurance
  • Health expenses
  • Other insurance
  • Educational expenses
  • Subscriptions, memberships, books, and entertainment expenses
  • Trips and vacations
  • Miscellaneous expenses
  • Expense patterns for selected services/goods
  • Assets and Liabilities

Demographic questions which may be in a consumer expenditure survey include:

  • Occupation
  • Work experience
  • Household income
  • Age
  • Gender
  • Ethnicity
  • Race
  • Level of education completed
  • Location
  • Marital status

Writing a survey is an art form (not that I'm biased). Find out how to write a survey.

Contact Drive Research, CEX Company

Drive Research is a market research company located in New York. Our team serves the market research needs for organizations around the world. Check out all of the custom market research services offered by our CEX company.

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