Market Research
To run a successful business it is critical to have a thorough understanding of your market. How do you find detailed information about your market? Through market research. Market research is the process of gathering, analyzing and interpreting information about a market, its existing and potential customers and competition. Whether you’re starting or growing your businesses market research is essential to making informed decisions.
Some basic questions to consider are:
Who are my customers? Age? Income? Location?
What are their needs, likes and dislikes?
Satisfaction/Dissatisfaction with similar products and services?
What price are they able and willing to spend for my product?
General Sources
Minority/ Women’s Business (M/WBE)

Forsyth Tech Small Business Center

NORTH CAROLINA INSTITUTE OF MINORITY ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (NCIMED)Historically Underutilized Businesses for Businesses and Nonprofits: Business Data and Statistics — Information and resources on economics, crime, occupations, trade data and much more.
Statistical Abstract of the United States
An authoritative and comprehensive summary of statistics on the social, political, and economic conditions in the United States.

Demographics – People and Population

American FactFinder
This service of the U.S. Census Bureau provides access to a wealth of population, housing, economic, and geographic data.

State and County Quick Facts
Provides frequently requested Census Bureau information at the national, state, county, and city level.
Industry Information

Hoover’s online offers company information, detailed business reports and industry profiles and overviews.

Biz Stats
Free business statistics, industry statistics, and financial ratios.

PR Newswire
News and press release distribution service for small business. Great source to monitor for current news and press releases with a specific industry and market focus.