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

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

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What is Small Business Reference Center and How Do I Find It?

Small Business Reference Center  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. It does not contain any company information or financials for actual businesses.

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

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
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. For example, the category Planning & Starting a Business will bring up nearly 20 subtopics covering all aspects of starting a business.
  • Industry Information by Small Business TypeSee Industry Information tab in this LibGuide.
  • 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. 
  • Start-Up Kit  & Business Plans
    Resources for starting up a business are provided, as are sample business plans, and start-up forms.

A Small Business Videos box appears on the right side of every page. These videos provide critical information for business owners. Interviews, ‘lessons learned’ features, lectures and 'how to’ videos help foster success in all aspects of starting and growing a business. Click on "Search Videos"  and enter in a keyword, such as "marketing."  However, there are no options for focusing your search once the results come up.

Note - This will be changing to the new "Small Business Interface" in December 2023.

Small Business Reference Center is a good source of information for those thinking of starting their own business. There is a Start-Up Information box on the right side on every page. Click  on Browse by State to access the State Small Business Start-Up Guides. Each state guide contains demographic data, information on taxes and incentives, licenses and permits, organizations, potential financing opportunities, and more, that are important to the start and development of businesses. Click on the state you are interested in

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