Advice and Insights From A Practitioner

Useful Links

Choosing Online Sources

When conducting research online, it is imperative to dig a little deeper to create general expectations of the sources being used. Keep your guard up…there are a lot of frauds out there in cyberspace. I find it beneficial to choose sites offering the information closest to the objective of the research. When evaluating online sources, use these ten (10) tips as guidelines:

1.      Examine the subject matter to determine whether the information presented will actually be relevant to your research and add value to the ultimate objectives of the project and outcomes.

2.      Try to determine if the source is reputable; information gathered from personal websites is usually biased, inaccurate, based on hearsay, or, in some cases, downright false.

3.      Determine the age of the information being provided. Outdated information often proves worthless, particularly in fast moving industries like technology.

4.      Determine how often the sources are updated and with what frequency (daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, annual, etc.).

5.      Is the format of the site conducive to information gathering, searching and quick access to information? Is the site user-friendly? If the site is wordy and has poor navigation, leave as quickly as you came.

6.      Are the sites well-presented and free of broken links?

7.      Determine the geographic coverage of the source. Are potential competitors/products being excluded due to geographic constraints?

8.      Consider pricing options before paying any information. Search and search again for free research rather than paying for some expensive report where the information you need in the report has been already dispersed for free.

9.      Determine if customer support is available by the publisher, if needed. As an example, Mintel Comperemedia gives you fantastic reports and account management support if you need it.

10.  Ask if documents are available in other languages. If documents were initially written in another language, there is a strong possibility developments or changes are occurring sooner than anticipated and you are being hindered simply by translation of the original source publications.

As a strategy and/or competitive intelligence researcher, always be cautious about what you’re gathering. The quality of the information is essential. If questions about the information arise, always verify your data with at least two or more sources.

Useful Links

This is a public service that I don’t have resources to maintain so I may need your assistance. Please send me an email if you find a broken link or think I should add a link to a category.

Alerts/Newsclipper/Monitoring Services
Ad FactsBizstatsDow Jones;InfoBeatNewsAlertNewsEdge;TracerlockThe Smoking Gun;Watchlist/Edgar Online;WebWhacker

Associations: VCA Association DirectoryAIPAGIAPIMA

Annual Reports
Free Annual Reports;

Balanced Scorecard – Kaplan and Norton’s Site:

The Palladium Group

Benchmarking Resources
APQC Best Practices;Benchmarking SourcesBest Manufacturing Practices;. The Benchmarking Exchange

Browser Assistants /Language Translation

BIZlinkBRINT Research InstituteBusiness Directory from Texas A&MCEO Express;Country Studies and Area HandbooksEconomic Statistics Briefing Room (ESBR)Galaxy Directory: Business and CommerceInformation Please AlmanacKnowXMcKinsey QuarterlyMintelNational Trade Data BankRice UniversityU.S. Business StatisticsUniversity of MichiganWall Street Research NetWebliography.xls ;Strategy + Business

IndeedRiteSiteResume Reach;The Vault Career Research;America’s Job Bank Info;BrassRingCareer Web;Careerbuilder; Career Jet;;HeadhunterHigh Tech Job SearchThe LaddersLinkedIn JobsLos Angeles TimesMonster BoardPhiladelphia OnlineThe Ripley GuideYahoo! CareersNow (Hot Jobs); InsuranceJobs;

Company Information
Business.comCompany Finder;Corporate InformationHemscott UKHoover Company Listings;IndividualInterNet Bankruptcy LibraryIRINMorningstarPublic Register’s Annual Report Service;SEDAR (System for Electronic Document Analysis and Retrieval)Starting Point;Thomas RegisterU.S. Federal Subcontractor DirectoryWall Street Research Net

Competitive Intelligence Sites
MintelSpyFu; Manning & Napier Information ServicesSociety of Competitive Intelligence ProfessionalsCI SeekStrategis;Wall Street TranscriptPromere.

Conference Call Schedules
Bestcalls.comCBS Marketwatch

Copywriter’s Roundtable

CopywritersExpress Voice

Corporate Filings
Free Public RecordsInvestQuest;SECSEC InfoUS private Company Public Records;Watchlist/Edgar Online10K Wizard

Credit Report Resources
Info USADun & Bradstreet;ExperianTransunion

Decision Effectiveness – See Bain & Company – 

Decide and Deliver

Direct Mail Tracking/Intelligence: Comperemedia

Economic Trends – Global: World Economic Forum

Executive CompensationExecutive Compensation

Facebook News: All Facebook

Franchising – The Pros and Cons of Franchising

General Business:

Knowledge Management Resources Brint;CIO Magazine KM Research

General Reference
AllWords.comHow Much is That Worth Today?Library Spot;TechEncyclopediaTime and date.comTravel Health Online

Government Agencies
CBDNetCongress and Government Resources;Environmental Protection Agency;; FirstGovInfomine;National Insititute Of Standards and TechnologyNational Science FoundationOccupational Safety and Health Administration;Securities and Exchange CommissionU.S. Bureau of the CensusU.S. Business Advisor;U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Economics and Statistics;U.S. Government Online GatewayU.S. National Technology Transfer Center

Government Issues / Contract Awards
Loren Data Corp.’s Commerce Business Daily

Healthcare – Helpful Sites: See Facts About Personal Health RecordsHelpful Information Sites/Services (AHA Site/Chartbook)


Interactive Marketing
PEW MashableUCLA Internet Law list of linksNew Media;eCRM GuideInternet PR Guide;ClickZGuideECommerce Guide;Internet Mail Consortium;Marketing TermsHUBSPOTEd Osworth’s Internet Marketing Index


IPO ExpressIPO MonitorROB Magazine

IT and Technology News

CRM: Best Practices from the fieldDialogDow Jones InteractiveDun and Bradstreet;FT ProfileIngentaKnowledge ExpressKnowx.comLexis-Nexis UniverseMarket Research;McKinseyMultexNorthern Light;PR and Marketing Network;Society for CI Professionals;Spacy ProxyTech Republic;Tracerlock
Ovitz Taylor Gates – Management resources for enterprise projects, offering how-to workbooks, project plans and planning guides, tools, templates and checklists. A valuable Management resource.

Ken Radio – for the latest technology news

Job Applications – hundreds of Job applications available at:


Marketing Virtual Library;Harvard LibrariesInternet Library CatalogMIT LibrariesNational Library of MedicineThe Library of Congress CatalogThe WWW Virtual Library

Market News
Motley FoolCBS Marketwatch;BloombergWall Street City;CNBC

Marketing: Marketing TermsInternational marketingMarketing online;AMA siteWilsonWeb;

See Interactive Marketing


Management Issues

Market Research
Ads of the WorldBizstatsRed HerringFast CompanyCompany SleuthCompanies Online;Compere MediaRedbook;Trendwatching; Conference Board Stats; Open Secrets

Merger/Acquisition Information;;

Modeling Tools

Jim Novo’s Web Site

Miscellaneous Reports
10K WizardEdgar Online

New Economy Sources
Industry StandardFast CompanyBusiness 2.0Red HerringZD NetWired News

Newsgroups / Message Boards
Raging BullMotley Fool;

Newspaper & Magazine Databases
AJR;YahooBizjournalsThe Internet Public Library

Organizational Effectiveness Simulator

Booz & Company

Patent and Copyright Information The Copyright WebsiteEspacenet;MicroPatentOfficial Gazette;Patent ExplorerPatent Search System;The Intellectual Property NetworkU.S. Patent and Trademark Office

Phone Directories Reference USABig YellowCanada 411;YahooInfo Space: The Ultimate GuideSwitchboardTelephone Directories on the WebYahoo Telephone Directories

Private Equity

A List of Heavy Hitters at; Bain (See 2012 Global PE  Report) 

Research Competitor’s Products
US Patents and Trademark Office;Delphion Intellectual Property Network

Research Complaints
Better Business BureauUS Securities and Exchange Commission

Research Consumers’ Reviews
U.S. Census;Consumerreview.comPew Internet Stats; U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission

Research Job Databases
MonsterboardCareer Path

Research Legal Cases
The Federal

Researching Private Companies
ForbesRed Herring

Research Public Information
Search Systems

Risk Management for the Enterprise:

Ernst & Young report;;

Search Engines & Directories
FINDSPOTGoogleHotBot;Internet Resource Guide DirectoryLycosMetacrawler;Newest Internet Resources;Northern LightSearch Engine ShowdownYahoo

SEC Filings
US SEC – Edgar Database

Spam/eMail Checking Software

SpamhausMail Check


Riveting talks by remarkable people at TED

Statistics FedStatsStat-USA;

Stock Quotes
E-tradeNetscapeCNNfnRed HerringNasdaqWall Street Journal

Trade Associations and Organizations
ASAEInternet Public Library;Yahoo

Trade Shows/Conferences;

Twitter Yellow Pages

Web Site Development

UseitWeb Pages That Suck;Microsoft Office LiveAll Who Is;DNS Stuff1 and 1Sedo, Web 2.0

Web 2.0 Summit

Word of Mouth Marketing


Some Interesting News Sites:

Today’s Front Pages – – PDF files from front pages of newspapers across the world.

The Paperboy – searchable directory of newspapers from around the world.

Listing of 25,000 newspapers from around the world – searchable by country and then by publication.

Clickable Map of the USA. All Newspapers within a State and a listing of newspapers.

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