Swinburne University of Technology Sarawak Campus

Industry and market analysis

Not just facts and figures

Researching an industry or market for a product or service involves looking at a variety of information sources. This will allow you to give a balanced view and a more complete explanation of the industry. Experts in industry research crosscheck a variety of primary sources, with media commentary and expert analysis.

As an investor, there’s one thing that gets Christine Christian excited: cold hard facts.

“I get excited seeing a strong business case and deep research. That’s what

excites me much more than a hopeful entrepreneur who wants to work for

themselves, for potentially the wrong reasons,” she says.


Wenzel, AM 2012, The entrepreneur’s guide to market research, Books

24×7, Inc. Santa Barbara, Calif., Praeger.

Newspaper and business press articles

Everyday, articles about industries, markets, consumer behaviour and the economy are written and published in all sorts of news sources, both online and in print, formal (such as newspapers) and informal (such as blogs). So this is a rich source for you to search for industry information.

Trade and Industry Publications

Industry and trade associations can be a very useful source of information when researching an industry. Publications from trade and industry associations are indexed specifically in databases such as Business Source Complete.

Consult the Consult the Australian Institute of Associations and Industry

Bodies to find out if the Industry you are researching has an association in Australia or to look for associations that are in your target market groups. For overseas industries, try Marketline Advantage or search the Internet for one. (eg Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries).

Specific Industry Directories, eg Retail World and more, check the Library Search.

Trove is a good place for historical Australian industry research.


ABS statistics
Browse Australian industry statistics, browse Census Quickstats to find community profiles. The ABS web site also provides links to overseas statistics agencies.

Marketline Advantage

Company information

Company information is a key component of your research, see the Library Subject Guide on Companies.

Industry and market overviews and swot analyses

Industry overviews are a ready-made source of information. One example of a source of these are the IBISWorld Industry Market Research Reports.

Marketline also has industry overviews and Proquest does too.

You can browse a list of Industry Profiles for different countries in Business Source Complete, also.

WARC provides access to global advertising and marketing information.

Government information

Government information is an important component of industry research. Try to think of the regulatory bodies that might be involved in helping or limiting your industry. There will be many different sources for government information, here are a few starting points below.


Commonwealth Department of Industry Innovation & Science business.gov.au – Thinking of starting a business?

ATO’s Small Business Benchmarks

Australian Department of Agricultural and Water Resources

Office of the Chief Economist

Australian Communications and Media Authority

Business Victoria

The Productivity Commission

Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation

AusTrade Industry and Country Information

Market Research not just facts and figures this is an export focused “how to” guide from AusTrade

Intellectual Property

Publications from IP Australia and also Publications from IP Malaysia. These free publications will introduce you to basic intellectual property (IP) concepts.

Crowdsourcing your business idea




Industry Ratios

Contains financial ratios for Australian listed companies and MINT Global and Orbis contain ratios for international companies. You can find industry ratios in IBISWorld Industry Market Research Reports  and Marketline http://advantage.marketline.com/ need to verify industry reports.