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Innovation & Entrepreneurship: Market Research

Information and resources to help aspiring entrepreneurs.


Consumer Lifestyles & Buying Patterns

Making Sense of the U.S. Census

The U.S. Census Bureau provides a wealth of information about the American people and does far more than simply count the population every 10 years.  The Census Bureau collects data on age, sex, race, family and relationships, income and benefits, health insurance, education, veteran status, and disabilities.  This is only a partial list of what you can find there.  

There are many ways to find census data.  Some of the most common surveys are described below.  

The Decennial Census collects data every 10 years about households, income, education, homeownership, and more for the United States, Puerto Rico, and the Island Areas.

The American Community Survey (ACS) is a nationwide survey designed to provide communities a fresh look at how they are changing.

The Economic Census profiles the U.S. economy every 5 years, from the national to the local level and by detailed industry and business classification.

The Annual Survey of Manufactures and County Business Patterns provide NAICS level business data for states and counties. 

What does it all mean?


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