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CHEME 4620: Chemical Process Design (Spring 2018): Industry & Market

Industry Research

Industry information includes:

  • Competitors - who is already operating in a space. Your products will compete on price, quality, and differentiation. 
  • Market share and size - how fragmented or concentrated a market is as well as how much sales are. Trends will give you an idea of where the potential of sales may be heading.
  • Suppliers - and the supply chain of the raw materials for your product. This is important as what affects your suppliers will affect your ability to get raw materials.
  • Distribution channels i.e. how the product gets to customers. 
  • Operating costs - how much do you pay in labor, raw materials, equipment, sales, etc. 

In short, industry information is about the operating conditions for firms making/selling a product or service. 

When researching an industry, use a combination of industry reports, trade journal articles, and trade associations to get the most complete picture. The more narrowly you define your industry, the more likely there will not be a readily available industry report. When that happens you will need to rely on trade journals, industry associations, and information on individual firms (SEC filings, articles, press releases) to pull together the information.  

Top Picks: Industry

Specialized Industry

Some niche industries will have their own niche sources for industry information. If you cannot find industry reports in the Top Picks list, try the following resources or contact the Management Library. 

Market Research

Market research is similar to industry research except instead of focusing on the companies in an industry, it focuses on who the customers are, why they buy what they do, and forecasts.

You might look at market research to determine trends that might affect your sales. For example, if you are manufacturing pharmaceuticals then demographics and rates of disease will affect the forecasted demand for your product.

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