Good Sources of Market Research Information


Are you looking for market intelligence? Do you need to carry out market research? A significant amount of market intelligence can be built through inexpensive secondary market research. Free databases/sources can be used to identify competitor companies, branded positioning(s), customer types and needs and market size. Here are some good sources of market research information:

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What kinds of things can secondary market research provide information on?

Secondary market research can be used to provide information about:

  • Total market size
  • Major competitors by category
  • Target buyer profile information
  • Issues that impact or will impact on the market
  • Trends that will change/shape the market going forward.

Secondary market research can also be used to provide important marketing environment information on an ongoing basis covering:

  • Political and regulatory developments
  • Economic and fiscal developments
  • Social and cultural developments
  • Technological developments, innovation and adoption
  • Competitor activity.

Recommended reading: How To Go About Market Opportunity Analysis

Good sources of external information

Good online and people sources of external information on local and overseas markets include:

  • Trade associations/industry groupings, such as the world Chamber Network ( and the Japanese Institute for International Trade (
  • Editorial staff of trade publications
  • Industry publications and databases – Business Alert – US (
  • Economy and Business ( and Enterprise Europe (
  • Government agencies and information databases, such as like Enterprise Ireland ( and the International Trade Centre (
  • Thomas Register of American Manufacturers, sourcebook of American and Canadian manufacturers
  • ACNielsen (tracks retail sales movement to consumers)
  • Lexis/Nexis company and industry reports
  • FISonline and S&P industry survey’s have industry and product category reports
  •, a database/archive/search engine site to research companies, industries and business publications
  • monitors companies for free
  •, a collection of publications from more than 350 leading research firms
  • For small private company/competitor information, the Dow Jones Million Dollar Database can yield some basic info and an SIC Industry Code. This in turn can be used to identify other companies in the industry
  • for industry trade/expos. Also
  • Industry commentators and experts
  • Industry suppliers and current domestic customers
  • Former/retired staff of a leading company
  • Industry analysts.
  • for information about manufacturing agents in the US

 Over to you now. Are there any other market research sources you could recommend to add to our list? Tell us in the comments below. 

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