Determining an industry designation or classification code can be helpful to get a sense of your industry. Many business databases allow searching by classification codes. The codes also provide useful descriptions of industries and sub-industries as well as ideas for search terms.
The most commonly used industry classification system in Canada and the U.S. is the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS). The system is hierarchical, organized by broad industry categories, each divided into more specific industries.
The Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) , although replaced by the NAICS in 1997, is still useful for identifying companies within a specific industry and is also used by a number of licensed databases and print reference material. The SIC codes group companies based on their primary activity, whether a good or service.
Note: If you are researching a very specific or newer industry, it may not be included in these industry classification systems. Please consult the Business Librarian for assistance.