Researching your industry and market is integral to successful business plan research. Industry & market research reports found on commercial databases give insight into:
Researching your competitors helps you understand the strengths and weaknesses of your idea. Use directories to identify competitors by industry, product line, etc. Find business environment risks and competitor strategies in corporate filings and annual reports and article databases. Explore patents to learn about competitors' products.
Top sources for company information are listed below. For more sources, consult the Company Research guide.
Knowing about your consumers is an important part of market research. You will want to research demographics (age, income, education), location, and behavioural information. You may use several kinds of sources, depending on your focus.
Top sources for Canadian and international consumer information are listed below. For more sources, refer to the Consumers page of the Industry & Market Research Guide.
The larger economic environment has implications for business planning. Some of the resources that you have already used in your industry and competitor research, will have articulated the larger economic context. Also try: