Discover information about product analyst skills, salary, and job responsibilities in this guide. Uncover insights into this career to understand if it's for you.
Product analysts observe how people use products and analyze the data they collect. By tracking usage patterns, identifying trends, and making inferences about customers' preferences, needs, and behaviors, they make informed recommendations for product managers and other guardians of the product (or service).
If you love data and are a curious, innovative, and collaborative individual, you might want to consider a career as a product analyst. Product analysts are in high demand. Organizations need them to gather and interpret data to design better products and services. As a product analyst, you'll work on exciting projects throughout the product lifecycle and directly impact product strategy and business performance.
Read on to learn more about what a product analyst does and how to become one.
As a product analyst, you research, collect, and analyze data on customers' behaviors before, during, and after using a product or service. Companies that design and manufacture consumer products, such as products for the office, home, car, and tech gadgets typically employ product analysts.
The product analyst's job entails gathering and analyzing data on how customers use a particular product. This allows you to determine what product features are widely adopted and which need improvement. Product analysts contribute to every stage of developing a new product, from conducting market research before designing a product, to analyzing sales trends after the product has become available. They also help decide if a product has come to the end of its lifecycle.
Product analysts are at the heart of product planning and development, helping teams create products by delivering data-driven insights about customers and markets, including areas of improvement in the product lifecycle. They provide insight that drives management decisions on product direction and investment.
Here are some of the main responsibilities of a product analyst:
Monitor product performance. As a product analyst, you’ll monitor the performance of products over their lifecycle. You'll identify patterns and trends that indicate how well a product performs on the market, and subsequently monitor sales numbers and gather customer feedback data to gauge performance.
Gather and analyze customer feedback. The day-to-day role of a product analyst involves using data to understand customer perception of products. You may conduct in-depth interviews with individual customers, facilitate focus groups, or even create polls to collect feedback from many customers on specific issues related to the product you’re evaluating.
Evaluate products and find ways to improve performance. You’ll draw insights about products from the data you’ve gathered. The goal as a product analyst is to evaluate products to determine how they can be improved or updated, as well as to study competitors' products (such as quality and price point) to ensure your product holds up in the market.
Create reports and presentations about product data findings. As a product analyst, creating reports and presentations about data findings and insights is a frequent task. You’ll use charts, graphs, tables, or other visuals to represent the data in a way other stakeholders easily understand. In some cases, you'll present the findings to senior management to justify your product recommendations.
When building your resume for a product analyst role, it's helpful to know the product analyst skills and experience employers are looking for. You'll want to list your technical skills but demonstrate your workplace skills implicitly in interviews.
These are some technical proficiencies you'll need to succeed as a product analyst.
Knowledge of economics: Understanding the economic principles that govern product development and market research is essential. Product analysts use data to help drive decisions that improve product performance, so it's helpful to be comfortable with basic economic concepts like supply and demand.
Market research expertise: Being an expert in market research, including the tools and methods used to gather customer data, is necessary for developing key product insights.
Writing detailed and comprehensive reports: Be able to produce detailed reports by summarizing and presenting your findings will contribute to your success. If you're able to engage stakeholders and convince them to consider your data-driven insights, you can affect change.
Data analytics techniques: Having experience using data analytics tools to analyze large datasets and derive insights is needed. Some techniques include:
Product management: You should have a strong grasp of the product management lifecycle, from design to development to distribution. This background is necessary to help you draw actionable insights as a product analyst.
SQL: Structured query language (SQL) is essential for any product analyst as it enables you to extract information from various databases across your organization. You’ll need SQL to gain access to the data you want to work with for your analysis. You may also need NoSQL data skills if your company uses big data warehouses of unstructured data.
Statistics: You’ll have to find, collect, and analyze data, making conclusions based on the findings. If you understand the statistical side of data analytics, be able to make projections and infer causation and correlations from data.
MS Office applications: You'll likely use Microsoft Excel, PowerPoint, and Word or similar applications on a regular basis.
Product analysts work on teams, collaborating with data and IT professionals, engineers, designers, and marketing to deliver core insights. These skills will enable you to work successfully with others.
Creativity: As an analytics professional, you must think creatively when tasked with finding solutions to complex issues. You'll also want to be creative and strategic in telling stories with data that convince stakeholders to implement these solutions.
Motivation: While working as a product analyst, you’re often involved in investigating new products and processes, which can mean working independently.
Communication: As a product analyst, you'll need to share your findings with others, in presentations and in written reports. You’ll also need to explain technical information and data-driven insights to non-technical colleagues.
Collaboration: A product analyst's findings often impact the work of other employees. It's crucial for you to be able to share information with colleagues in an effective manner, to take feedback gracefully, and use collaborative efforts to improve your work processes.
Organizational skills: Often there will be a need to work on multiple projects simultaneously, so you need to be organized and keep track of each project. You’ll also need to be careful about keeping data up-to-date. Outdated numbers and disorganized data will affect your ability to draw insights.
The average product analyst salary in the US is $73,369 .
Sometimes, in job postings, you won't see "product analyst" but some variation of the following. Their average base salaries are also listed here:
Senior product analyst: $79,911 
Lead product analyst: $81,205 
Market research analyst: $60,686 
Product insights manager: $106,601 
Product consultant: $68,321 
Product analyst roles enable you to build strong experience in product marketing and management. Some of these roles you could advance to after working as a product analyst include:
There are no specific educational requirements for product analyst jobs. Still, employers usually look for candidates with at least a bachelor’s degree in business management, economics, finance, or another relevant field.
Certifications like Certified Analytics Professional (CAP) and Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP) are respected by employers. Some employers require certifications in data analytics and product management.
Becoming a product analyst can be an exciting and rewarding career. You’ll be pivotal to the success of product launches, marketing campaigns, and company growth. The experience you gain can also open up opportunities for career advancement in marketing, product, and management roles.
If you’re ready to take your next step into a product analyst career, you can start building your knowledge and skills by learning online. Learn job-ready competencies in data analytics by earning an IBM Data Analyst Professional Certificate.
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