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Company, industry and country information: Consumer information

Finding Consumer Information

Consumer research can be tricky - you need to think about what kind of information you need before you starting searching for it. Some sources will include demographic information (for example, the age of people are in a particular area, or the incomes in another), while others might provide insights into consumer trends and lifestyles (like how interested people are in healthy eating, or whether craft beer is on trend).

You can find information about consumers' capacity to pay, their desire to pay, and more, but first consider the sources that are available, and what exactly it is that you need to find out.


Demographics     

Australian Bureau of Statistics
The ABS provides valuable demographic information, much of it sourced from the Census. By clicking on the 'statistics' tab, you can access data covering:

Age
Income & SES
Gender
Education
Religion
Nationality
and much more

Data can be broken out into geographical areas.

Australian Institute of Health & Welfare
The ABS carries some health data, but the AIHW looks more closely at the health of the population. You can also find more specific information at departments of health in each state. In NSW you can find detailed data at the Bureau of Health Information.

Sensis
Social Media is a valuable source of information about consumers. Sensis produces an annual report looking at the use of social media in Australia.

OECD iLibrary
OECD iLibrary is the online library of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development. Featuring its books, papers and statistics and is the gateway to OECD’s analysis and data in OECD.Stat. You can browse by theme and country/countries.

Statistics Subject Guide
The Library maintains a statistics guide which has a huge range of resources covering Australia.

.id demographics
While we don't have a subscription to this service, there are a range of useful reports available for free - and demographic information about different communities.


Geography and Location   

Australian Bureau of Statistics
The ABS allows you to search for statistics by geography. The menu on the left-hand side of this page allows you to zoom in to various statistical areas, and the 'Statistics' tab at the top of the page will give you an overview of the sort of information you can get from the ABS.

Google Maps
Google Maps is useful for getting an insight into the size and location of an area, the types and numbers of businesses that operate in their area, and the user feedback and ratings on these businesses within Google's social services. Maps can also provide insight into the geography of an area, as well as traffic and public transport data.

Transport Services
Transport websites, such as Transport NSW, can give an insight into the availability of travel, commutes and commuter habits, and the availability of these services in particular areas.

Government Websites
Sometimes it's helpful to visit government sites such as Destination NSW to see what events happen regularly or are upcoming in a particular area. This can help give insight into the habits, interests and industries in a particular region. You can also look at Council websites for this kind of information, or even Planning NSW to see what kind of developments and demands might be on the horizon in particular areas.

Land/Home Values
Sites like Domain and realestate.com.au can be used to gather information on property values, rental costs, local neighbourhoods and features of particular towns and suburbs. Combine information found on these sites with media reportage which you can source through Factiva or Google.

Climate Data
The Australian Bureau of Meteorology produces detailed reporting on climate and weather conditions, which can be localised to particular areas. Their research and reporting goes beyond simply predicting the weather, and their website carries much valuable information that can be used to look at environmental factors in particular areas.


Psychology and Interests      

Databases
A number of databases carry relevant information about consumers, consumer habits, and research into trends in behaviour and consumer psychology. Search for articles in these databases using keywords related to your product or company:
- Business Source Ultimate
- ABI/Inform

Passport
The Consumers module in Passport is available from the top of the screen. It contains demographic consumer data about households, income and expenditure. The lifestyles module is particularly useful, drawing on Euromonitor's Global Consumer Trends surveys to provide insight.

WARC
WARC carries a number of consumer profiles. Simply browse from the 'topic' menu, or search for a particular consumer type.

Strategic Business Insights
Strategic Business Insights' VALS framework is an example of consumer segmentation by psychological profile. Their website includes useful reports on consumer behaviour in the Why-ology Library.

Hofstede
Hofstede compare cultural characteristics between different countries, looking at six different cultural traits: power difference, individualism, masculinity, uncertainty avoidance, long-term orientation, indulgence.

Nielsen
Nielsen studies consumers in over 100 countries, providing insights and consumer trends. Some reports are publicly available, as are featured insights.


Digital Consumers    

Online retail and the share economy are growing fields in marketing. You can get accurate information for these fields by looking at a range of useful sources, like the databases below.


Passport (Euromonitor)
Global market research database, providing statistics, analysis, reports, surveys and breaking news on industries, countries and consumers worldwide. Accessing Passport from mobile devices is not currently supported.

IBISWorld
Major provider of Australian and global industry market research, risk ratings, and Australian company research on Australia's largest 2,000 companies.

Gartner
Reports and news from the information technology research and advisory company, which aims to research, analyze and interpret the business of IT for IT and business technology decision makers.

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