To develop an understanding of an industry, you must understand its structure. For a large industry, information is easy to find. For smaller industries, which may be fairly new or filled with "mom-n-pop" and private businesses, a different approach is needed. Examples of where you may find industry information include:
To learn about and understand the industry in which your company operates, there are a number of databases listed below which give you an outsider’s expert opinion about an industry. Using these sources enables you to find out what information already exists, see the opinions and ideas of experts, and reach your own conclusions based on facts and analysis. They contain prepared reports which have industry information and analysis. The reports may be written by independent firms, consultants, industry experts, or investment services. Use them to find industry trends, ratios, norms, SWOT, Porter's Five Forces, key statistics, and competitors.
What is an Industry?
A group of companies producing similar products/services for sale to consumers/businesses.
Basically, we try to group “like companies” together by industry, and industry code. Knowing an industry code can help you find consistent industry analysis from resource to resource by making sure you are comparing consistent industry segments.
SIC = Standard Industrial Classification See this link for SIC codes: http://www.ehso.com/siccodes.php
NAICS = North American Industry Classification System See this link for NAICs codes: http://www.naics.com/search.htm
First Step: First Research contains:
Once in First Research, simply search for your Fortune 500 Company name and then open the report that matches their industry. The report contents are listed on the LEFTSIDE of the page.
IBISWorld: Global industry market research reports include insight on the business environment. Search by industry name, NAICS code or company name. Use for understanding market size, competitors, drafting business plans, pitch books, benchmarking, forecasting, business valuations, litigation support, due diligence and more. Search by industry name, industry code, or company name to access industry reports.
Industry reports include:
Many industries have government regulation; most government agencies provide reports and information on those regulated activities.
Industry Ratios provide analysis of diverse financial data for an industry. They can be used to compare a company against its peers.