The Importance of a Representative Sample in Market Research

Organizations have to deal with time and budgetary constraints when conducting market research. This means it is nearly impossible to survey everyone they want to target for their research. These organizations often require market research firms to carry out representative sampling, which takes a sample from a smaller group that adequately replicates the larger statistical population.  

Representative sampling saves organizations considerable time and money while capturing an accurate representation of the target population. Here are some of the reasons why a representative sample is essential. 

Avoiding Bias: Representative samples are essential in ensuring that all target population segments are represented when conducting market research. Not representative samples risk being biased by over-representing or under-representing a particular group.

Accurate Data: Since the representative sample replicates the target population, it can provide accurate market research data. The larger the sample size, the more accurately it will derive data that represents the target population.

Ease and efficiency: Representative sampling is a more straightforward method for market research of a larger target population, allowing for actionable insights within a fixed budget and timeframe.

Achieving a Representative Sample

There are two primary methods to achieving a representative sample. 

1. Probability/Random Sampling

In this technique, you select individuals from the target population based on the theory of probability. Participants are selected at random, with everyone having an equal chance of being selected. Considered the purer of the two approaches, probability sampling requires more resources and is mostly confined to well-funded research. 

2. Non-Probability Sampling 

The more widely used of the two methods, non-probability sampling participants, are chosen from the target audience using specific controls such as quotas to ensure the sample is correctly balanced. There is a possibility of human error or sampling bias in this method since the participants are not selected at random. However, people surveyed are more likely to provide actionable information. 

Market Research with Decision Point Research

Recruiting is at the core of achieving a representative sample. Decision Point Research is well equipped to meet your market research needs with our large propriety multicultural and general population databases. We can help achieve a representative sample that accurately represents your required target population and get you accurate data that will drive actionable results.

Contact us today to learn how we can help with your market research needs.


Anton Nicolaides