Morris County Library > Reference > Market research
Who are your customers? Where do they live? Can they afford to buy your products? This information is essential to your market plan. Census data is free and readily available on the Internet.
Government statistics & reports
Our federal government reports domestic industry data by Standard Industrial Classification
code (SIC). This four digit numbering system is revised periodically to accomodate new industries and technology. The SIC is also used by commercial publishers (Dun & Bradstreet, Standard & Poor's and many popular business databases) to report market data. If you are currently following a specific industry, you need to know that the current four digit SIC code is being replaced by the new North American Industry Classification System
(NAICS). For the time being, you can still use the 1987 SICs.
- U.S. Census Bureau Home Page
.....more than people information! search by keyword or browse by topic
- FedStats (Federal Interagency Council on Statistical Policy)
.....quick access to statistical data reported by 70 federal agencies
- Statistical Abstract of the United States
.....best place to begin searching for basic economic, trade and consumer data
- County Business Patterns (U.S. Department of Commerce)
.....number and size of establishments, arranged by SIC Codes; national and state reports available
Access to data gathered by trade associations varies. Some organizations offer extensive databases of free information, others limit data access to their paid membership. Your public library can help you identify major associations (and their URLs) by subject.
Which companies are engaged in the same business & where do they rank?
- Business Rankings Annual, annual compilation of company rankings [book]
- Reference USA, compile target lists of companies by industry, size and location [database] available from home (library card required)
- Wards Business Directory, companies ranked by SIC/sales; total U.S. and by individual states [book]
[NOTE: our library owns several industry-specific directories which list companies and products. Please ask the reference librarians for assistance.]
Need to track industry trends? Recent mergers? New products? MCL offers several excellent databases
covering trade journals, consumer magazines and newspapers. You can access several databases from home
. Many articles are available full-text. Need more?
- Business News New Jersey
.....type in telecommunications or office space...MCL owns back issues or you can purchase reprints directly from the publisher
- PR Newswire
.....read latest events in the hottest industries
.....search by company, inventor, classification or keyword
- Yahoo! Industry News
.....latest developments culled from current sources
- Yahoo!list of trade magazines
.....scan current headlines...or...search the archives for background information
Consumer trends & opinions
Consumer trends can best be tracked through newspapers and magazines. Commercial surveys, academic studies and opinion polls are often cited in general consumer and trade publications.
- Advertising Age.....searchable archive dates back to 1995...dataplace rankings offer popular charts
- Adweek.....also current articles from Mediaweek and Brandweek
- American Demographics.....searchable from home, many articles available full-text.
- GoogleGroups.....newsgroup postings are full-text and keyword searchable (try shampoo and favorite)
- PollingReport.com...latest results on politics, business & the American scene
- Public Opinion Poll Database.....free data from Louis Harris and other major polling organizations...simply fill out the form!
Try our web pages on:
small business start-up
© Morris County Library 1996
27 December 2008