Basic Resources for Small Business Research
There are thousands of small business resources online. Some of these are honest attempts to assist small business people, many are only advertisements for a new "get rich quick" scheme, and still others fall somewhere in between. At SBDCNET, we use a wide variety of paid subscription databases; but at times, we find ourselves falling back on the free resources available on the Internet. As a researcher, there are only a few resources that we find useful and authoritative for our research. We thought we would share these resources with you, so that you and your client's market research time could be efficiently spent.
The Kauffman Center bills itself as "a world of resources for entrepreneurs." The Kauffman Foundation is dedicated to entrepreneurship and many of the educational materials on entrepreneurship have been created by or funded by this foundation. Their web site provides many links to educational programs as well as articles about small business issues.
Like the Kauffman Foundation, the Ed Lowe Foudation is dedicated to helping small business people. Their web site provides a database of articles and excerpted chapters. The articles range from information about the different forms of incorporation to identifying locations for your retail business.
Unlike the two previous non-profit sites, the More Business website is a for profit enterprise. Many sites that market their wares as the answer to every problem; however this site provides articles, sample business plans, and sample contracts from other resources as a service to small businesses. Their money is made from advertising.
Industry and Market Articles:
Valuation Resources provides a starting point for any industry research. This link provides links to industry associations, reports, financial studies, books and articles. Most of the links are not free, but someone else has taken the time to find the resources for your particular industry. From there, you can decide whether or not to purchase the material. Sometimes the material may be borrowed from a library.
Not everyone can afford a subscription to a database of magazine articles. Fortunately, some research can be conducted through Find Articles.com. Hundreds of magazines and journals are represented including: Automotive Marketing, World Oil, Health Industry Today, Modern Brewery Age, and Global Cosmetic Industry.
The American City Business Journals are published in many of the major metropolitan areas. From their web site, you can search archives for information about your industry or ideas for your business. In addition, they have industry specific newspapers and general demographic information.
J. Eric Lomeli
Co-Editors: Carolyn Ellis & Judith Johnson
Please email us or call us at 1-800-689-1912 if you have any questions. Feel free to pass this on to other SBDC Business Advisors. If you are not currently subscribed to SBDCNET Connections, sign up on our website under "SBDCNET E-Newsletter."
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This U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Grant is funded by the SBA. SBAs funding is not an endorsement of any products, opinions, or services. All SBA funded programs are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis.