FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

People often have questions about how we work with clients, how we do what we do and what they “get” at the end of the process.

A few common questions are highlighted below, but feel free to contact us directly with additional questions.

  1. Why would I hire an independent researcher when I can perform my own Internet research?
  2. Isn’t everything I would need on the internet anyway and what special sources do you have?
  3. Do you specialize in any specific industries?
  4. Do you provide primary market research services such as surveys, interviews or focus groups?
  5. Do you act as a private investigator or research public records?
  6. Do you provide Patent Research or analysis?
  7. How much do your services cost and how do you charge?
  8. How long do projects typically take and what do I receive from you at the end of the research?

1. Why would I hire an independent researcher when I can probably perform my own research?

There are a number of reasons because we specialize in research and related information services. Bancroft Information Services, subscribes to a number of online professional subscription resources and I have the expertise to go far beyond most Internet users. My training as a professional – MA in Information Resources and Library Science plus Advanced Internet Search Training – gives me the expertise to delve deeper than most. We deliver information that’s pertinent and succinct because it’s been filtered and analyzed to meet the specific objectives of your project. And that saves you lots of time.

Once you’ve hired us for customized research, you’ll find that having ready-to-use, on-target information will help you make better decisions, no matter what the situation. That’s powerful!

2. Isn’t everything I would need on the internet anyway?

Many would like to believe the answer is yes, but often realize that this is a fallacy once they’ve experienced trouble and frustration in finding what they need. A very small percentage of the world’s knowledge is actually currently available freely on the internet and this is why we choose to have access to proprietary sources through subscriptions to fee-based national/international business and industry databases.

3. Do you specialize in any specific industries?

While we do market ourselves a little more to certain industries,  if the project is something we would like to take on and feel we can perform well on, it can be in any industry.  Some of my favorite stories of projects revolve around Doggie Day Care and Wine Accessories. Our expertise is in the research, the research sources and creating a successful strategy for each project.

4. Do you provide primary market research services such as surveys, interviews and focus groups?

Most of the research we provide is generally classified as “secondary research.” This is in contrast to more traditional “primary” research such as focus groups and surveys.  We do have access to a wonderful phone interviewer who participates on my team when client projects require in depth interviews of individuals and we can also coordinate additional primary research if it is conjunction with the secondary research that we conduct. Otherwise we’re happy to refer to qualified colleagues.

5. Do you act as a private investigator or research public records?

No, Bancroft Information Resources does not possess a private investigator’s license or perform public records research. We are,  however, happy to refer a client to colleagues who work in those areas.

6. Do you provide Patent Research or analysis?

No. There are a number of reasons for this, but we do partner with a wonderful Intellectual Property (IP) research and consulting firm for related services.

7. How much do your services cost and how do you charge?

The research we provide is customized to each client’s needs and thus each project is unique in its scope and cost. However, companies of all sizes have found our services to be affordable and beneficial. Because of the customization, a conversation, either in person, by telephone or by e-mail, will need to take place to establish the parameters of the research project.

Depending on the project and timeline, fees can be established per project, per hour or by retainer. Consultations to discuss a project and estimates are provided free of charge.

8. How long do projects typically take and what do I receive from you at the end of the research?

Again, projects are customized based on client need and scope. Timelines vary tremendously from the same day to a few weeks. Timeframes for projects are discussed up front in initial consultations.

The end deliverable for the research varies, but often the results are presented in written report format with an introduction, outline, table of contents and search strategies. Key Findings are often bulleted for easy review at the beginning of the report and when pertinent, copies of news articles discussed are presented in full. Reports are delivered via e-mail in PDF format unless otherwise specified. When Excel spreadsheets or PowerPoint presentations are requested or are more pertinent, those are also included.