Consumer preference measurement and its practical application for selecting software product features
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Consumer preference measurement is a quantitative field of study for modeling, collecting and analyzing product decisions by consumers. Discovering how consumers choose products is an important area of marketing research and recognized as a successful partnership between academic theory and practice over the past forty years. Despite preference measurement’s success in consumer products, little guidance is available for its application to software product management. This paper assesses the feasibility of applying advanced preference measurement techniques to software products and suggests a framework for conducting such studies. A summary of the methods is provided to give guidance to software product managers seeking to apply preference measurement to common product decisions. The paper concludes by recommending a technique called ‘maximum difference scaling’ to elicit customer feedback to help measure the importance of new features for software product improvement.