One of our goals at bizologie is to help you keep up with free resources for business research. Here are a few of our favorite sites, tools and tactics for doing business research on a shoestring budget:
Marketing, Advertising, & Shoppers
Oil & Gas
Private Companies- Domestic
Private Companies- International
Statistics & Government Data
Technology & Social Media
Venture Capital & Private Equity
You’ll also find a few free research reports here.
You’ll find ways to track down email addresses for CEOs or other high ranking executives here.
Save a more than a few bucks on market research reports with these helpful tips.
Find tips on how to research a private company here.
Compete: Web traffic statistics
comScore: The press release page offers charts, graphs, and data on consumer and market trends for digital technologies and Internet web site market share rankings
BatchGeo: Make maps from a list of multiple locations, use addresses or zip codes
Speek: Super simple conference calling. No dial-ins, no pins, no downloads.
10 Minute Mail: Disposable email service
VisualBee Plugin: 50 free templates for PowerPoint, you put in text and then VisualBee does the design
LiveLoop Plugin: Real-time collaboration in PowerPoint. Sign up to test in private beta
Prezi: Cloud-based presentation software that is cross between whiteboard and slides
FindThatFile: Searches FTP sites and repositories
Mailtester allows users to confirm email addresses. Mailtester is perfect for helping track down addresses for CEOs or other company executives.
Aviary: Tools for editing images, audio, and video
SnipSnip allows you to take any YouTube video and crop out just the parts you need.
PDFUnlock Simply upload the PDF you’d like to unlock and they’ll take care of it for you.
SpyFu: Keywords with Highest Cost Per Click
Quantcast: Web traffic statistics
The Atlantic Cities Blog: Lots of city stats and lists
Bliss Control: Easily manage settings for all your social networks
Google Finance: Current, but most importantly, historical stock prices by day up to 35 years
CPI Inflation Calculator: From the Bureau of Labor Statistics, what was the dollar worth
Investopedia: Finance education – dictionary, calculators, tutorials, videos
Seeking Alpha: Investment research
EMPORIS: Commercial Real Estate Information by city, tallest buildings
ThomasNet: Directory of manufacturers
Business School FAQ: Penn Libraries specific, but an excellent way to determine which resources print and databases have the answers to your business questions
Trade show News Network: Tradeshow directory
Clinical Trials.gov: Clinical trials directory
U.S. Commercial Service: Trade professionals in over 100 U.S. cities and in more than 75 countries that help U.S. companies get started in exporting or increase sales to new global markets
CIA World Factbook: Statistics on population, GDP, and more, plus maps
Worldometers: Live statistics on population, government and economics, society and media, environment, food, water, energy and health
The Indian Census was released in 2011 and is the most credible source of information on population characteristics and Economic Activity in that country. It also includes data on literacy and education, housing, urbanization, birth and mortality rates, socioeconomic data like castes and scheduled tribes, language, religion, migration, disability amongst others. Historical data goes back to 1872.
The Census 2011 was the 15th National Census taken. It is the only source of primary data in the village, town and ward level and provides valuable information for planning and formulation policies for Central and the State Governments.
GMA: Grocery Manufacturers Association shopper data
Marketing Charts: Data and charts for marketers
Digital Music News: iTunes top 100, biggest movers, top ipad music apps
Box Office Mojo: Tracks US and international movie sales
American Pet Products Association: Statistics on pet ownership
Wards Auto: Car and truck sales data
Duke University’s Digital Advertising Collection
The U.S. Energy Information Administration, the statistics-keeping arm of the US Department of Energy, is a wealth of energy data, including current and historical spot prices for crude oil and natural gas, weekly refined products pricing by region, oil and natural gas production, and monthly imports of crude oil by country. They also have excellent country profiles on energy-exporting countries, and produce three forecast publications: The Short Term Energy Outlook (to December 2014), the Annual Energy Outlook (with projections to 2040) and the International Energy Outlook. Finally, they produce the weekly This Week in Petroleum which is published every Wednesday.
The American Petroleum Institute–The API is a trade association representing all aspects of the oil and gas industry from refiners to pipeline operators. The API collects, maintains and publishes “statistics and data on all aspects of U.S. industry operations, including supply and demand for various products, imports and exports, drilling activities and costs, and well completions.”
Baker Hughes– maintains active rig counts, a broad indicator of the overall health of the energy industry. A rig count is the “number of drilling rigs actively exploring for or developing oil or natural gas”. Baker Hughes has maintained counts from 1944 and releases weekly North American numbers every Friday (international data is released monthly).
Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries– OPEC is comprised mostly of oil-exporting countries in the developing world and is based in Vienna, Austria. They produce several noteworthy publications including the Monthly Oil Market Report, the OPEC Bulletin, the World Oil Outlook and an annual statistical bulletin, all of which are available for free on the OPEC website.
The Oil Market Report is a monthly publication from the International Energy Agency, an autonomous agency within the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development, and is based in Paris. This report covers current world oil supply and demand, commodity markets, tanker markets and the oil trade. Available by subscription, the IEA also makes available a free version approximately two weeks after the date of publication.
BP Statistical Review of World Energy: This annual publication is released every June and provides data across a variety of energy sectors (oil, natural gas and coal, to name a few) using various data points, including consumption, production and reserves. A free hard copy can be requested through BP’s investor relations department; PDF and Excel versions are available on the BP website.
CrunchBase: Database of technology firms, funding information provided
The American City Business Journals or, more commonly, BizJournal: BizJournal comes out every week and covers 62 markets nationwide. Some of their information is subscription-based but a fair amount of it is available freely on their websites. This is a great place for local, in-depth articles on private companies.
FormDs.com: See who’s raising money
gigaom: Good source for business, private company and tech news
Guidestar: Form 990 from Non-profits
Austria: Weiner Zeitung
Belgium: National Bank of Belgium (in the Central Balance Sheets Office)
France: Coface ORT
Ireland: The Companies Registration Office
Italy: Italian Chambers of Commerce – Companies Register
Netherlands: Trade Registry of the Chamber of Commerce
Spain: InfoLine (English site in progress)
United Kingdom: Companies House WebCheck
The Official Board: Organizational Charts for the world’s 30,000 largest corporations
Rank and Filed: Rank and Filed gathers data from EDGAR, indexes it, and returns it in formats meant to help investors research, investigate and discover companies on their own.
WSJ Market Data Center: Stock market research
Forbes Global 2000–The World’s Biggest Public Companies
EDGAR: free SEC filings
Purdue: Historical annual reports, interlibrary loan the print copies from your local library
IPOScoop: Recent and upcoming IPO data including SEC filings, company data and revenues
Corruption Perception Index: Visual representation of corruption by country
Zanran: Numerical search – find data and statistics
Data.gov: Machine readable datasets from Uncle Sam
Economic Census 2007: Every 5 years, counts businesses, employees and payroll, down to the zip code
ESRI: Tapestry segmentation describes neighborhoods by lifestyle and lifestage of the community, search by zip
The Federal Reserve Bank Economic Data (FRED) Add-In is free software that will significantly reduce the amount of time spent collecting and organizing macroeconomic data. The FRED add-in provides free access to over 80,000 data series from various sources (e.g., BEA, BLS, Census, and OECD) directly through Microsoft Excel including:
- National Income and Expenditures – including GDP, federal debt
- Production and Business activity – including the unemployment rate
- Prices – including the consumer price index and selected commodity prices
- Money, Banking and Finance – includes treasury rates, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, corporate bond yields and selected currency exchange rates
The Excel Add-in also maintains popular macroeconomic data for selected countries including Canada, China, Great Britain and Germany.
Key Features include:
- One-click instant download of economic time series.
- Browse the most popular data and search the FRED database.
- Quick and easy data frequency conversion and growth rate calculations.
- Instantly refresh and update spreadsheets with newly released data.
- Create graphs with NBER recession shading and an auto update feature.
Check Facebook: Facebook user statistics
VGChartz: Video games and console sales data
PricewaterhouseCoopers MoneyTree Report–Here you’ll find investments by region, industry and deal stage as well as historical trend data and definitions.
Prequin–Here you’ll find information on fundraising and deals. They also publish The Preqin Quarterly which “outlines the latest developments in the Private Equity, Real Estate and Infrastructureindustries over the most recent quarter-year period.”
National Venture Capital Association–NVCA has a great “Stats & Research” page where you’ll find fund raising, performance and exit data. Near the bottom of the page you’ll see recent studies which includes the “NVCA Yearbook.”
Wall Street Journal’s Venture Capital Dispatch–”An inside look from VentureWire at high-tech start-ups and their investors.”
New York Times DealBook–”DealBook is a financial news service reporting on mergers, acquisitions, venture capital and hedge funds and is produced by The New York Times.”