The Halton Region Small Business Centre maintains a library of resources available specifically to help you with planning and growing your small business.
Our library includes printed materials from various government agencies that you can take and keep and a lending library of books on various aspects of business that you can borrow, but some of the most valuable information in our library is in our printed and online market research resources.
Scott’s is a directory of businesses from across Canada that is most complete in the categories of distributors and manufactures. This could be practical if you wanted to find a supplier for a part that you need for your product, to understand the performance of your competitors, or to find a distributor who already sells products that are complementary to your own.
Logging In: During your visit to the Small Business Centre, you will have access to one of our public computer workstations, just ask our staff to log you into Scott’s Directory.
Creating Searches: Because Scott’s is an electronic tool, you can create complex searches to filter and sort business listings using any number of fields in the database. The broader categories of fields include Geography (like postal code, city or metro area), Demographics (like number of employees, estimated sales volumes, or size of warehouse), and Products (by name or industry code). A search could include adding criteria to more than one of these fields.
For example, we could look for businesses that are distributors, are located in Milton or Halton Hills, have warehouses over 20,000 sq.ft. and sales revenues under $10-million.
Using the Results: After building your list, you can open up each record one by one-to-evaluate the suitability of the business. If you would like to keep a copy of the record to use it can be added to a “PickList”, which is essentially a shopping cart of the business you are interested in exploring further. The PickList can then be exported to PDF for future reference.
Expert Tip: Refine your search and export only the number of records you need to fulfill your research goal. A report with 1000 business names can’t be valuable if you don’t have the time or energy to further sort or take action on them.
To learn more about market research or for a demonstration of our market research tools, current and prospective business owners can book one-on-one consultations, free of charge by calling 905-825-6000 Ext 7900