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Concept Testing Definition, Examples & Tips


Table of Contents

Introduction to Concept testing

Companies come up with multiple ideas and concepts to offer their customers the best possible services. All these ideas are a part of the company’s endeavour of creating an enhanced customer experience. In doing so, it’s not necessary that the customer feels the same way about a concept as does a company personnel.

People’s preferences, needs and wants keep on changing with the change in time. In order to stay up to date with the market knowledge, it is beneficial for the company to test out their ideas on a sample of people who can ideally represent the target market’s approach and response.

Improve Customer Retention

What is concept testing definition?

Concept testing is a research methodology that helps in testing out concepts, ideas and products by seeking responses from a set of people that constitute your target market to evaluate initial response, positives, flaws and general market acceptance. 

This is a prudential approach that puts your developed ideas before participants that represent your market sentiment. Seeing how your participants view your product can give you an understanding of the impact it is likely to have and whether or not is it worthy to go ahead with it. 

This product or idea can be anything: an ad, logo, upcoming offering, price and incentives or any other aspect, the success of which depends on your customers. 

Concept testing incudes multi-purpose testing methodologies that can be chosen to accurately test each aspect of your concept in detail to arrive upon precise conclusions that help in deciding it’s feasibility.

How does concept testing help?

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Concept testing prevents a company from putting their resources in the wrong place. An idea may appear as a big hit, but it’s real value is only determined when put in front of the customer. 

Concept testing assesses the potential interest of a customer. It puts to test each and every detail of a concept to see what the customer likes and where they feel that an improvement must be made. This not only tells the company what’s good about their idea, but also provides room for improvement to increases chances of market success.

Concept testing optimises resource investment. This particular benefit of concept testing speaks to every company on a more tangible level. Companies run the risk of losing their limited resources by investing in an untested idea that may or may not work. By choosing the research participants efficiently, companies can reduce their risk by making the necessary changes that make the concept market ready.

In addition to the above benefits , concept testing is a great way of collecting input to back your decision making. Certain management members might be unsure about a decision. Concept testing is a great way of collecting data to substantiate important decisions based on certain market predictions and information collected through concept testing.

What are different concept testing examples?

Product Concept Testing

Products are a representation of the quality that a company offers its customers. To assess the customer acceptability and how the product meets the customer requirements accurately, product testing is widely used by companies.

Each feature of the product is put before a set of target customers which helps in narrowing the research to identify the exact points that need to be worked upon before putting the final product in the market.

Advertisements Concept Testing

Advertisements must convey the necessary messages along with attracting the attention of their audience. Multiple ads can be put to test to compare visual appeal and content relevance. By comparing multiple ads on common characteristics, companies can make sure they optimize their promotional efforts to target specific audience and gauge their interest in what the company is trying to convey. Participants can also be asked to rate ads and suggest what changes in the content will make them watch it with more intent.

Website Concept Testing

Website designs can be evaluated as an important customer touchpoint. Ease of navigation, visual appeal, messaging, sub-heads are some aspects that can be put to test. Customer visiting website can be asked if the model which the company is deciding to launch will be better suitable for them or not. Moreover, problems with current website designs can be identified to improve the upcoming model. Websites must be evaluated in terms of whether or not the customers visiting them are able to achieve their goals or it acts as a roadblock in their customer journey.

Pricing Concept Testing

Multiple prices can be attached to a product package to assess the target customer’s likelihood of buying them. This is done to decide how the customer mindset approaches a product in terms of perceived value. After gaining a full-fledged knowledge about a product, the customer decides whether or not the features and design are worth the money that the company is asking for. Accordingly, the company decides the right product package and assigns it with a suitable price based on the income levels and perceived value of the target market. This prevents the company from walking themselves into a product failure where the initial market response to the product is very low and there is a risk of losing market share.

Logo Concept Testing

An important part of your brand recall and recognition, logos are a visual aid that gives your customers something to remember and associate your brand with. Colour scheme, design, visual appeal, easy to remember and relevance to the brand and its products are some of the basis that can be used to analyse logos. This is particularly important for a new brand looking to establish their name. 

Aside from visual aspects, participants in concept testing can also asked what they assume the brand of a particular logo to be offering along with their reasons for the assumptions. This gives insights into customer expectations.

Messaging Concept Testing

Messaging is the textual content that is meant to convey information, benefit or simply nudge the customer in the right direction. Every messaging is set to achieve a certain objective. For example: How effective are your call to action buttons in generating conversions?

Each message can be studied with respect to the objective they were designed for to assess impact. Suggestions can be taken upon the most suitable messaging that would go with the visual or audio content it is being displayed with .

Packaging Concept Testing

Your package design speaks volume to your customer and is major influence in decision making. Customers have a peculiar approach to the package material, durability, its suitability with respect to the product size and ease of carrying. 

Package testing is a great way of seeking approval by asking study participants to rate your package on the above aspects. This is useful when the company has multiple packages to test or may be confused if launching a new package design may be a good idea or not.

How to perform concept testing?

These tests can be conducted in a number of ways :

Comparison testing

More than one concept is put before a sample of respondents for comparison.

Customer experience

Monadic testing

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 Sample is divided into sub-groups with each group being presented with one concept only and similar questions are asked from each group to maintain consistency.

Sequential monadic testing

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Sample is divided into sub-groups with each group being presented with all the concepts providing insights and verifying them from multiple sources.

Protomonadic testing

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A sequential monadic test followed by a comparison test from multiple sub-groups of a sample is a cohesive method of studying individual concepts and establishing comparison.

Companies can use concept testing to increase the efficacy of their value offerings and making them more suitable to market requirements. This way they can minimize risk of losing out on customer loyalty due to poorly designed concepts and back their decisions using valuable market intelligence.

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