My friends in the Ohio University Business Cluster are researching the feasibility of opening an outdoor sporting goods in the Spokane, Washington Â metro area. The purpose of this guide is to point business researchers to some key resources when researching the sporting goods industry and the local market. Â This guide lists Â the most highly recommended resources when researching the industry and analyzing the market. Â I have listed the databases and resources below, with recommendations on how to find the best information in the quickest fashion.
Chad’s research advice
A well-researched feasibility analysis will incorporate information from a majority of the tools below. Â Some of the databases will be easier to use than others, and researchers are bound to pick a favorite tool to use more than the rest. However, I cannot stress enough how important it is to use SimplyMap, Bizminer, and Mediamark when attempting to understand the consumer market and industry in a specific market. Â These three resources can be a bit difficult to use, so I have made a video for using each database specifically for this project, which you will find linked where the databases are mentioned below. Â Please note that SimplyMap has a maximum of 5 simultaneous users, so you may need to get up earlier, stay up later, and not procrastinate.
1. Â Find information about the larger industry and market
When you first get started, you’ll want to gather an understanding about the broader industry and market. Â The resources in this section provide a broad overview of the sporting goods and outdoor sporting goods market.
- IbisWorldÂ has a report forÂ “Sporting Goods Stores in the U.S.” and “Bicycle Dealerships and Repair in the U.S.”
- First ResearchÂ has industry analyses of “Sporting Goods Stores.”
- You can also do the same search for “sporting goods stores” and find the same content in Hoover’s Online
Business Source Complete
- Business Source CompleteÂ has a wealth of information, but the challenge may be in finding the appropriate search terms. Â Suggestions include, hiking, camping, fishing, canoeing, paddlesports, watersports, skiing, fishing, rock climbing, biking, cycling, mountain biking, outfitter, recreational fishing, freshwater fishing, etc. Â Â To avoid being overwhelmed with search results, limit the search to Trade Publications.
- StatistaÂ is a great place to look for a variety of sporting goods and sporting activities statistics. Â Search for your topic of interest, such as mountain biking, fishing, etc.
2. Â Gather a deeper understanding about the consumer
After you get a good idea about the larger industry, youâ€™ll want to research the consumers in your market. Â Market research reports, data, and statistics found in the resources below are an excellent place to start.
- In Â Passport GMIDÂ has reports such as “Tourist Attractions in the U.S. and “Travel and Tourism in the U.S” as well as reports on “Store-Based Retailing in the U.S.” Â You might also try looking at the Consumer Lifestyles Reports to get a broad understanding of how consumers spend their leisure time.
- When usingÂ Mintel OxygenÂ for this project, you will find a market research report on “State Tourism” that focuses on the “Influence of Outdoor Activities on Destination Choice”
- Also look in the Lifestyles category for relevant reports about marketing to Â specific group.
- UseÂ SBRNetÂ to get demographic information and statistics about participation in various forms of outdoor activities.
- Use the browse by sport on the front page to find data on backpacking, climbing, fishing, hunting/shooting, bicycling, winter sports, water sports, skiing, and snowboarding.
MRI Mediamark Reporter
- Mediamark ReporterÂ provides excellent demographic statistics on consumer products (skis, backpacks, bicycles, etc.) and outdoor activities
- This video demonstrates how to find demographic information for outdoor sports product consumers and outdoor sports participants.
3. Â Analyze your local market
After you research the consumer market for the industry, Â you will want to adapt that data down to the local level. Â The resources below can help you find information about your local market to combine with national consumer market trends.
- Census QuickFactsÂ provides easy access to some of the most-used economic and social statistics.
- The QuickFacts are an easier way to get to census information than American Factfinder.
- You will want to use census data to compare how your local market demographics align with the more general national demographics of a consumer market (like what you find in MediaMark, Mintel, and Passport,above).
- The Washington Get County and City DataÂ Â site is a great resource for demographic and economic information. Â If you’re looking for data for another state, try Googling the name of your state and “county profiles”.
- You will want to use the site to compare how the local market demographics align with the more general national demographics of a consumer market (like what you find in MediaMark, Mintel, and Passport,above).
- SimplyMapÂ can help you understand how many people in the Spokane area, or any other area for that matter, bought hiking shoes, go snowboarding, go fishing, etc.
- This videoÂ demonstrates how to use SimplyMap for your location demand scenario by measuring consumer demand for outdoor sports equipment/interests by location.
- This videoÂ demonstrates how to use SimplyMap to locate outdoor equipment consumers and the location of potential sporting goods store competitors.
- See thisÂ guide for help citing SimplyMap.
- BizminerÂ contains industry financial ratios, failure and startup rates, competitive market analysis, industry vitality rating, and more for a variety of sporting goods and outdoor retail establishments. Â There are reports on Canoe Dealers, Hiking and Camping Equipment Stores, Fishing Equipment Stores, Bicycle Equipment Stores, and more.
- This video shows you how to use Bizminer to benchmark against industry averages of sporting goods companies in a specific location, while also understanding the local market.
- Use Mergent IntellectÂ companies and competitors by user-defined search criteria, such as size, location, industry, sales, and more.
- Also use to find nearby companies
- UseÂ LexisNexisÂ to find companies and potential competitors in the local market.
- This video shows youÂ how to use the NAICS code to screen for companies in the same industry in a specific location. (need a new video if time)
- You can also use Hoover’s Online to fine a list of companies and potential competitors in the local market.
- Because Hoover’s indexes companies in a slightly different way than LexisNexis, it’s a good idea to run the same search in both databases.