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Search Tips for Industry Research
When conducting industry research, it is important to be creative and flexible while searching for information.
- Identify the industry by name and classification code. While it's important to have a clearly defined industry, remain mindful of the larger industries that industry may be a part of as well as related niche industries. You may need to broaden or narrow your search.
- Create a list of terms and codes to use when searching. Think of synonyms and related terms for keyword searches. We all conceptualize information differently so it's important to search using different terms to ensure you get the best results.
- Use multiple resources. Try different databases, trade associations, news sources, and internet resources.
When not on campus, you will need to provide your ULink id and password to access these databases.
ABI/INFORM provides access to industry reports, company records, journal articles, and business news. To find industry reports, click the Browse tab at the top of the page. Select First Research or Business Monitor International (BMI) Industry Reports under Industry and Market Research heading.
You can also find information including news, company profiles, and industry reports by searching by NAICS code. In the Advanced Search, there is a NAICS Code field. If you know the NAICS code of your industry, enter it and click search. You can also click "Look up NAICS code" and search for your industry. On the next screen, you can use the filters on left to narrow your results.
Business Source Premier
Business Source Premier includes access to company profiles, industry reports, market research reports, and SWOT analyses.
To find industry profiles, go to Limit your results under Search Options in the Advanced Search. Under Publication Type, select Industry Profile from the drop down list. You can then enter the NAICS code in the designated field under limit your results, or you can enter the industry name in main search box at the top of the page.
Mergent Intellect provides access to industry profiles, business data, and industry news. To access industry reports, click on First Research in the section under the search bar.
To access information on companies within a specific industry, you can search by NAICS code, SIC code, or keyword in the search bar by selecting industry and beginning to type in the code or keyword. Suggestions will appear under the search bar, select the one you want to search.
Statista provides access to studies, statistical dossiers, infographics, and industry and market reports.
You can do a keyword search for your industry in the search bar, or you can click the reports tab at the top of the page and select Industry Reports. You can then search within those reports for your industry.
Industry Classification Codes
Every industry is given a classification code by the U.S. government. The two main classification systems are:
- NAICS (North American Industry Classification System): 6-digits
- SIC (Standard Industrial Classification): 4-digit
While some databases will allow you to search for the appropriate NAICS code, the government websites below can help you identify the correct NAICS and SIC codes for a particular industry. There may be multiple codes relevant to the industry you are researching.
♦ Trade Associations
Trade association websites frequently provide links to reports and information relevant to specific industries. While some information may only be accessible to members, often free information can be found on these websites. You can find relevant trade associations by doing a Google Search for your industry name + association. For example: automobile association.