Demographics are statistics about people: how many people live in a specific area, where they work, what they buy, and how they live. Statistics can shape the delivery of a new product or service, or determine where you locate a business.
It is mandated that every ten years, the U.S. Census Bureau count all of the people in the United States and Puerto Rico. Along with counting the people, the Census Bureau also collects certain economic and social characteristics about everyone. Rather than doing the long form every 10 years, the Census Bureau is now taking an annual American Community Survey which provides an estimated count of many socioeconomic characteristics. The questions asked are those that help federal and state agencies carry out the services they provide as mandated by Congress. This mandate is a benefit to business owners, social service agencies and others who need demographic information.
The following information can get you started on your research.
If you are looking for basic demographic information, the source you will want to start with is American FactFinder , a website created and maintained by the U.S. Census Bureau . Very quickly, you can pull up a fact sheet on:
Statistics are given for more than 40 variables and include:
Demographics Now  lets you produce comprehensive business and residential lists as well as detailed demographic reports. Assess business viability, perform market and site location analysis, create sales leads and/or marketing mailing lists, find potential sponsors and donors to grow a non-profit, prepare a small business plan and much more.
The American Community Survey  (ACS) was created to give not just federal programs more timely data, but to also help you, the business owner, student, activist, and community organizer, the current demographic, social, economic and housing data that you need. The ACS:
The ACS will give you more detailed data than what is found in American Factfinder but only for larger geographical areas.
The library has several print resources that might help you with your demographic research.
For additional information, contact an H&R Block Business & Career Center librarian by phone, 816.701.3717, or by e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org .