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Market research in U.S. - statistics & facts

The market research industry includes any organized activity to gather information about a specific target market or group of customers. It includes traditional methods of information gathering such as surveys, as well as newer methods of data analytics that have emerged with the increasing digitization of society. In 2019, in the United States, market research companies generated over 47 billion U.S. dollars in revenue, more than half of the total revenue of the market research industry globally.

The vast majority of money spent on market research in the U.S. in 2019 was for quantitative research, which accounted for 64 percent of the market. Within the quantitative segment, online research and phone interviews were the most dominant research methods, while face-to-face interviews accounted for only two percent of spending. Customer satisfaction investigations were the main type of project conducted in 2019, constituting 20 percent of of revenue received by market research companies. The next largest source of revenue was media audience measurement, which accounted for 16 percent of revenue.

Within the U.S., the market leader was Nielsen Holdings, who reported 3.9 billion U.S. dollars in domestic revenue for 2019. There is a significant difference in revenue to the next largest company in the U.S. market, IQVIA, which reported approximately 2.2 billion U.S. dollars in revenue for the same period. However, this gap is not surprising given IQVIA specializes in research for the healthcare sector, while Nielson provide services regarding goods, consumers. and the media across a broad range of sectors. Other leaders in the U.S. market research industry include Kantar, Information Resources Inc, and Ipsos, each of which generated under one billion of U.S. revenue in that year.

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