Use a virtual assistant to carry out online research

Nowadays, online research is a vital part of our lives. The internet is such a vast source of information, that it can be used to provide background information on all manner of business topics.

The growth of online business has also led to a change in buying behaviour, such that we now purchase many more items online. The travel agent, and the knowledgeable shop assistant, for example, are in decline as retail businesses cut back. As a result, more consumers book their holidays and business travel, flights and hotels online. And many more of us do our pre-purchase research ourselves, rather than ask a knowledgeable expert in a shop.

The flipside of this change is that we can end up doing the job of the travel agent ourselves, visiting numerous websites to find the best ways to reach our destination, the hotel that is located in the best part of the city, and to seek out the best financial deal.

And if we are planning a purchase, for example a vacuum cleaner, we will expect to do online research ourselves to find out about the different features of the models available. There will also probably be reviews of different models on a variety of websites, from national newspapers to consumer association sites.

Whatever the nature of the online research, the one uniting factor is that it takes time. Have you noticed that opening up all those windows, and scanning through the mass of information to find out what you want to know, can quickly consume an hour or two? And it is here that the services of a virtual assistant can be very helpful.

A virtual assistant can take a brief, then be left to get on with your project on your behalf. Say you need to research a business trip, with time and cost options for getting to Frankfurt for a business meeting. The virtual assistant can shortlist the best flights, check the most cost-effective or convenient hotel for you to stay in, and if you wish, make the bookings on your behalf.

Alternatively, you may require background information on companies, or on individuals you are due to meet. Or perhaps you are going to interview a candidate, and would like a full search of their background social media presence – including the things they might not volunteer to you! In such cases, a virtual assistant can quickly and efficiently provide you with a summary of the information you require. All you need to do, is provide them with clear instructions of what it is that you will need. If the brief is not entirely clear, they can always touch base with you half way through the task, for further direction.

What are you going to spend your busy time researching today? Perhaps it is time you contacted a virtual assistant, and asked them to help complete the task for you. You’ll be glad of the time saved. For more information please contact us and see how we can help you.

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