How does a good product or service is created? It requires two essential elements: innovation or subjugation to massive public demand can bring about a once-in-a-lifetime product or service. Didn’t get the point? Let me give you an example: Microsoft Windows became one of the most widely used (and highest selling) products of the 21st century, and it was more of an invention than a public demand. Likewise, JM Eagle™ is the largest seller of PVC pipes in the world, and that is more of a demand than an invention. Therefore, IoT industry has just launched and beginning to expand, a great time for the leading manufacturers to carry out thorough user-end research and create remarkable IoT solutions/products.
Gartner has already published their research stating a whopping 8.4 billion IoT connected devices around the globe in 2017, and these estimations will only grow in the coming years. Therefore, this makes it more sensible for the major IoT providers to get in-depth user feedback, and based on their preferences, craft their IoT solutions and products. “Due to the fact that IoT had something of a very rapid emergence in the technology world, there is a high chance of it producing more in quantity (to overcome the need) rather in quality,” says Mr. Clovis Lacerda, founder of Parlacom Telecommunications Brazil, a mobile M2M/IoT service providers. The point which Mr. Lacerda has described is deeply entwined with qualitative user-end research to make relevant products and solutions.
There are various downfalls of not considering the user-opinion before providing them IoT solutions or products. First, the product, or the service, might get over-bundled with unnecessary features which may not adhere to the user requirements, or make it difficult for the user to adapt to them. Second, if this situation exists on a massive scale, it can greatly hinder the progress and the global implementation of overall IoT technology. Third, IoT firms may well suffer huge financial losses just because none of their products/services are literally resolving the actual problems existing at the consumer-end. Sounds like a real disaster, right?
However, with a little bit of open-minded and customer-centric approach, IoT businesses and the industry itself will easily survive its initial launching period quite successfully. And the reasons that we have given above to conduct high-quality are certainly not the only ones; there are a plethora of other important reasons for IoT companies to consider the voice of their targeted customers prior to providing a solution/product. Well, so much for the idea of gathering qualified consumer data to provide highly customer-centric and winning IoT solutions and products; let’s take a brief look at some of the valid problems that a company might face in initiating user research.
Many business owners/developers argue:
“Conducting user-end research is not important because we are the trendsetters.”
“A company cannot get a face-to-face idea of each individual.”
“A general user does not even have the basic knowledge of the technology; what is the benefit of talking to them?”
While these concerns may sound legitimate, yet they are still worthless when it comes to seeing the benefits provided by conducting high-quality user-end research. So, here are some basic ways IoT companies can still be of value to their users while overcoming the concerns mentioned above:
- Focus on quality than quantity when it comes to researching.
- Be very specific to your niche in IoT, and do not flow with the hype to get into every sector.
- Try to focus on targeted audience’ problem in the research, and develop exclusive
- IoT solution/product to effectively eliminate those customer issues.
- Craft seamless methods to keep receiving customer feedback continuously after gathering their opinions.
So, whether you are a new or established IoT service provider, user research is going to play a very vital role in the contemporary evolutionary stage of the Internet of Things. We have every reason to believe that B2C companies that are highly customer-centric in IoT industry will be the ultimate toppers in the future. Make sure you develop and implement a qualitative user research plan right from today for your IoT firm.