Back in April, I wrote an overview article detailing 15 modern market research methods that are prominent today. I stand by what I said then, that there is no one right tool, application, or process for every research experience and so to build the best research experience, we need to take a combination of tools and build a market research stack to deliver a truly effective research experience.

With the path market research is heading down right now, it has been predicted by key insight professionals that our industry will need to provide more integrated solutions, supply agile research demand (in both the fast and flexible senses of the word), and create the customizable research experiences that are looking to be key in 2020. In the following article, I will expand upon this premise and detail some of the tools that we can use in conjunction with each other in 2020 (in no particular order), for a comprehensive insight program.

1.Fuel Cycle Marketplace

While a platform isn’t a tool so to speak in and of itself, it’s still a useful tool for researchers to use in order to utilize lots of other research tools. Fuel Cycle is an online platform that allows the user access to a myriad of the best tools in the research industry. Their FCX Marketplace lets researchers pick and choose the best tools to use in conjunction with each other, creating a custom insight platform built from other brand’s tools.


This is another platform I would like to mention that automates the data collection and visualization processes of market research projects. Through the use of external research providers tools enables researchers to create surveys, choose their samples, choose the reporting method, and the rest shall be done, ready in the chosen timeframe.

3. Heartbeat.AI Platform

This platform is very different from the first two I’ve talked about in that, it analyses text sources and picks out the key emotions involved in the creation of that response. These emotional insights are crucial to understanding the decision-making process behind a participant’s answer, which can then inform key businesses decisions creating a more human experience.

4.Userzoom UX Platform

The next platform I would like to mention is Userzoom’s UX platform, which is complemented by its own range of tools. This platform is great for usability testing, with elements such as simultaneous audio and screen recording for live commentary on websites and online services, online surveys, and true intent testing.

5.Lookback.io UX Platform

The integrated UX platform, Lookback, is on a mission to seamlessly capture user experience insights in real-time. Through the use of screen-sharing video technology, researchers can communicate with users directly and record how their experiences of a website, brand, or online service unfold. These recordings are stored in the platform’s dashboard for future further analysis.

6.Discuss.io Focus Froups

Discuss.io has created a video conferencing platform where researchers can conduct focus groups and one-to-one interviews with research participants; this real-time feedback and interaction with consumers is critical to the current understanding of their decision-making processes and the underlying reasons why they chose that path at this point in time. This platform also offers services such as transcriptions, archiving, and clip-making to help the user better store, share, and analyze the data.

7.Tobii Eye Tracking Tool

This tool is a brilliant example of how far the research industry has come to developing world-leading technology, and how we can use it to enhance the enjoyment and interactivity of data collection processes. In terms of consumer insights, this eye-tracking tool helps businesses gain valuable insights into real-time human behavior in both online and physical scenarios.

8.Plotto Video Surveys

Another video tool, Plotto is the only business to combine video capture, online survey software, cognitive analysis, and showreel generation in one platform. Participants can use this tool on any digital device, so it’s easy for researchers to gain insight into the tasks they perform (think video diary tasks and the like) as well as answer surveys without having to think about writing the answers.

9. SurveyMonkey

But if written answers are your thing, then SurveyMonkey could be the tool you want to go with either as a standalone survey tool or a companion tool to the video insights you gain from Plotto. This free service allows anyone to create engaging surveys and export the results. Once the survey is complete, SurveyMonkey will automatically analyze the results and display them into charts and summaries to get the researcher started.


Surveys can be very time-consuming to create and analyze. So, if you’re short on time, then response:AI surveys might just be the tool to use in this case. They specialize in automating the survey process from design to visualization, with the automated surveys created in accordance with the different research studies researchers might need to conduct (i.e. ad development, product, testing, brand analysis, etc.).


However useful surveys have been to market research (one of the most prominent research methods alongside focus groups), Streetbees have created a tool to help generate more in depth, in-the-moment insights through AI and geolocation software. Their Conversational Research method allows users to share their thoughts through tasks in a WhatsApp-like app, creating conversational insights on a range of topics without the formality.

12.Touchstone VR

Engagement in market research processes is becoming harder and harder, but with the incorporation of new technologies such as virtual and augmented reality, we can take out processes to a whole new level. Touchstone research has brilliant VR and gamification research tools that can be used for a variety of studies such as UX and product testing, surveys, and deep dives to really get the most out of research participants.

13. Awario

But participants generate so much data already in their daily lives, that we could simply use that to create a foundation for future research. Awario is a social media monitoring business, that monitors more than just social media. From news sites to blogs, to social media, this platform enables businesses to be fully aware of what people are saying about them, the discussions they’re involved in, and can allow them to reach out across these platforms to engage and respond in kind.

14. R Project

Of course, once the data is collected, the task then is to analyze the data in order to make sense of it and generate actionable insights for business use. The most common but complex tools used are based on the R and Python coding languages. R is an integrated suite of software facilities for data manipulation and calculation; it is well-developed and well-equipped with a large collection of tools that can handle even the most complex of analyses.

15. Tableau

As an alternative to learning R and Python code, there are a few analytics platforms that you could use instead. One of these is Tableau, an interactive analytics platform that lets the user see and understand the data they’ve generated, turning it into actionable insights so they can tackle business problems with certainty.

16.Stats iQQualtrics

Qualtrics has another analytics platform that I would like to mention as an alternative to R, Python, and Tableau. Qualtrics claims that their Stats iQ platform is the world’s most powerful analytics tool, enabling those with no knowledge of statistics to easily understand the data through visualization and translation. While Qualtrics also have their own data collection tools that pair with this system well, it also handles data from other external sources just as well.


However, if you’re more of a traditionalist who likes to analyze the data themselves, KnowledgeHound’s data visualization and organization software could just be the ticket. This platform lets you upload research data from any research provider, and lets you create professional charts, graphs, and tables that you can share with everyone else within the business.

18.Trint Transcription Tool

While data visualization and analysis are alright for quantitative data, some qualitative data needs a little extra step before we can put it into the analysis platforms. Transcription programs such as Trint are necessary to capture, analyze, and share valuable qualitative data, turning it easily into a source from which to generate valuable insights. Trint has additional capabilities such as transcript annotation and collaborative editing to quickly share and analyze qual data.

19.Fine Report

Now that the data collection, transcription, visualization, and analysis are done, reporting is the final stage of a research experience. Traditionally done in programs like PowerPoint, research reports can be very time-consuming and fiddly to put together. Fine Report is a reporting software that streamlines the report creation process, with innovative design patterns, data integration, and visualization applications.

20.SurveyLineVoice Assistant Surveys

This last one is one to look out for in the future. With the rise in voice assistant ownership, this is fast becoming a serious channel for B2C communication. This could offer a lot of potential for future market research delivery methods. SurveyLine is one of a very few companies working commercially with Google, Amazon, and Apple technology to deliver voice surveys that generate better responses. But the technology has the potential to go a lot further than just simple surveys.

+1.FlexMR InsightHub

It would be remiss if we didn’t mention our own tools and platform within this blog, as we believe that our tools are great contenders for the best tools to use in 2020. With our InsightHub platform and wide range of quant and qual research tools, we can offer uniquely tailored research experiences, taking into account each different client requirement, and providing a service based on that alone. Our tools can be integrated together on the platform, work alongside each other on a number of different projects all at the same time, thus cutting out the time it takes to set up another research project per task.

Written by Emily James


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