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How to Find Company and Industry Information: Small Business Reference Center

This guide will assist you in locating company information using library resources.

How to Locate

Small Business Reference Center provides information on how to start, finance, or manage a small business.  However, it does not provide  information on specific companies.

It can be accessed from the Databases page under the Find menu on the library homepage.  You will be prompted for your BU login

Small Business Reference Center

Though this databases does not contain any company information or financials for actual businesses, it provides up to date information on relevant topics from starting a company, operations management and sales to growing or rescuing a business. It also provides information on how to create business plans.  Business videos provide additional information for business owners. A collection of state-specific resources supports the researcher with demographic data and other local information. 

Using Small Business Reference Center

Though a search box is available which will use your keywords to search across all the content in the database, it is often more productive to use Browse by Category: 

  • Business Areas
    Choose one of the general business areas listed. Subtopics will be listed for that area.  Click on one to see a list of articles or book chapters related to that area.
  • Industry Information by Small Business Type
    Click on one of the industries listed.  You may then choose "Articles" or "Industry Information." The industry reports are very detailed (at least 90 pages to over 200) and current.
  • Business Basics
    Select one of the topics listed to see a list of documents which come from a variety of sources, including magazines, reports, and books. When the results come up, check the "Source Types" in the "Refine Results" column to the left to see which are included in the results list and to choose the type you prefer. You may also set a date range and mark the "full text"  option.
  • Start-Up Kit  & Business Plans
    Resources for starting up a business are provided, as are sample business plans.

Small Business Videos

You can access videos related to starting or owning a small business, including interviews, "lessons learned" features, lectures and "how to" videos. Type in a search term, such as "marketing" to find a related video.  You can access all the "Lessons Learned" videos, by typing that into the search box; likewise, typing "How to" will bring up these videos.  

Start-Up Information by State

Click on "Browse by State" then select the state that you are interested in to see data, demographics, and other information relevant to starting a business in that state.

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Margie McCandless
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