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The Missing Ingredient: How Quality Data Powers Pricing Success

If you pay for first-party survey data and you use this data to shape your pricing strategies, then you have to ask yourself whether what you’re using is quality data. You might part with a couple hundred dollars, thousands or tens of thousands, but how do you know the answers you’re getting are useful, reliable and, well, correct?

Using subpar data only leads to dark places—unreliable, inaccurate data means making inaccurate or suboptimal decisions around pricing. Mispricing affects your bottom line, your customer relationships, brand perception, and loyalty…the list goes on.

Not only do we know what good quality data looks like, we can show you how to spot signs that your data might not be as accurate as you think it is. So, if you’re planning to overhaul your pricing strategy this year to drive revenue, reduce churn and unlock new market opportunities, keep reading.

There are two reasons data quality is important

First, most folks are familiar with the concept of "garbage in, garbage out", so if you want a reliable and useful outcome, the data you put into your analysis has to also be reliable and useful. 

Imagine a B2B software company that builds tools for growth marketers running a project about feature preferences but only surveying the general population. These people would, for the most part, have no idea what features matter to a growth marketer and therefore, the results of that survey would be pretty useless.

And secondly, the decisions you make around pricing are significant. They hold the power to change the course of your business’s success, and making these decisions on poor data means the foundations are rocky at best. There are a lot of people involved in making these decisions, and a lot of time, energy and resources are drained in the process. So, to have to do it all over again will not only cause major frustration but it’ll cost a lot of money too.

Let’s take the job site Indeed, for example, which trialed a new pricing scheme called ‘pay-per-application’ in 2023. This pricing model was met with confusion, particularly with smaller businesses. The shift from the industry standard ‘pay-per-click’ model meant smaller firms were hit with larger bills if they didn’t ‘reject’ candidates within the short 72-hour timeframe.

The company has since reversed the scheme and introduced the old, reliable one instead. Messing up your pricing strategy can have serious consequences, not only angering current customers but also drawing bad publicity.

Our guiding principles around good quality data

At Price Intelligently, we follow certain principles to maintain a high standard of quality data. While we carry out both qualitative and quantitative research, our focus in this article is on quantitative survey data.

When looking at the data we collect, there are four things to look out for:

1. Are you talking to the right people? 

Are you better targeting current customers, or people who don’t know your product? It all depends on the questions you’re asking and the results you’re looking for.

Here’s a tangible example: If you want answers about the nitty gritty features of the product, you’re likely best leveraging current customers because they use the product and know what you’re talking about. If you ask an audience that hasn’t ever seen or used the product, you may be wasting your time (and money).

Ultimately, we can’t help you achieve pricing strategy success without generating high quality survey responses. So it’s in both our best interest and yours for the first-party data to be the highest quality. 

2. Are people who they say they are? 

The Internet is a wild place, so it’s perhaps unsurprising that many people lie to get paid for a survey—it’s rife with fraud. For example, they embody the Chief Marketing Officer at a SaaS company just to ‘qualify’ for the survey. 

One of our prior clients ran research using Survey Monkey, and the results included many fraudulent responses. They blamed their questions; maybe they weren’t clear enough, or their target audience wasn’t specific enough. But although there may be faults with the survey design and targeting, it’s important to know how to spot bad actors and know how to design surveys to remove them.

At PI, we source and vet all survey participants to get the right quantitative and qualitative data on your target buyers. We work with various market panels, some of which use an entirely different participant recruitment strategy, for example sourcing participants via LinkedIn.

3. Do people understand the questions you’re asking? 

Experimental design is really important. You can have the smartest, most qualified respondents, but if they don’t understand the questions, they won’t answer correctly and give you bad data.

At PI, we have significant experience creating surveys to elicit the most accurate responses from participants.

4. Getting clean, reliable data

To get accurate data, we leverage automation to uncover suspicious data patterns, which can be pretty impossible to catch with the human eye. But human elements play a large part in our data cleaning processes, too. We manually look through each and every survey response to ensure our clients are presented with the highest quality data. 

We look for consistent survey responses, people who demonstrate an understanding of the product, remove duplicate responses and more. We want results that reflect the true market in the final research report. 

3 ways to ensure your survey data is high-quality

So, how do you know if you’re investing in high-quality data? Here are three things to look for when compiling your market panel research.

  • The cost. If it’s cheap, there’s a reason. If you’re reading this, you’re probably a decision-maker or executive. Ask yourself, would I take a survey for $1? Perhaps not. So why base major business decisions on $1 responses? In the B2B arena, you can expect panels to pay participants up to $150 per survey. It’s worth working alongside a partner like PI that knows this space inside and out, and takes time to find the right participants for your survey, particularly if you’re in a niche market. 
  • If you’re looking for a market panel only use one that recruits for B2B. Consumer and B2B audiences are very different so you’ll want to consider commissioning a survey from those specializing in this space. Specialist market panels know how to vet participants, so you know their participants will generate highly valuable data.
  • The more niche your audience or product, the more you’ll have to dig to find market panels to suit your needs. Most market panels target based on targetable company attributes like the company size, location and so on. But if you need more specialized targeting, you need to find a market panel that can get as close to that as possible, or work with a partner like PI who handles everything for you (and knows the pitfalls!).
  • Consider partnering with a company that has high standards, significant experience and can do it all for you. We work closely with SaaS and subscription companies to develop tailored pricing strategies by collecting first-party data to drive revenue and growth. Our rigorous research standards enable us to deliver data-driven market insights, helping you make impactful business decisions. 

You know your business, we know pricing

Price Intelligently's team of monetization experts work with you to combine strategy and data to solve complex business problems and accelerate your growth.

Talk to us today

Without quality data, all organizational decisions are based on assumptions. To compete in a highly saturated market littered with heavyweights, you can’t get by on guesstimations. 

Quality data is the key to understanding your audience, their purchasing behavior, and their motivations. This in turn informs how to price and package your products based on value and how to market your SaaS subscription products to the people it benefits most.

Learn more about our value-based pricing strategies that get results

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