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*Business Research Guide*: Finding Web Sites

A research guide covering all business-related topics, including accounting, economics, finance, marketing, and management.

Search Google Scholar

Google Scholar Search

Search Google Scholar to find scholarly literature from many disciplines in a variety of formats. 

Click here for instructions on how to add MCC library resources to your Google Scholar search Results.

How to Cite Sources from Google Schoar

  • Click on the image of quotation marks below the article information.
  • Copy and paste the correct citation format into your document, this will most likely be either MLA or APA style.
  • Make the necessary changes to the citation depending on the citation style.
  • For APA- give it a hanging indent, make it double-spaced, change it to match the font of your paper, find and paste the DOI (find by clicking on the title of the article - not all will include a DOI).
  • For MLA - give it a hanging indent, change the font to Times New Roman 12pt., make it double-spaced.

Google Search Tips

These are some tips to help you search the web efficiently and effectively. These tips pertain to Google.

  • Use Google advanced search to create the most precise search and for options such as limiting by date, language, and usage rights.
  • Leave out small, non-descript words such as a, and, the. Google ignores most of these words anyway.
  • Use clear, precise, descriptive search terms. Do not type your search as a question or statement. For example, instead of searching: What are the possible long-term health effects of Covid?, search : long-term health effects Covid
  • Put exact phrases in quotes. Example: "Yellowstone National Park"
  • Put a minus symbol before a word to exclude it from your search results. Example: electric vehicles -Tesla
  • Use or between words that can be used interchangeably or to search more then one idea at a time. Example: junior high or middle school
  • Use the appropriate subset of Google depending on what you need. For example, Google Scholar, Books, News, Images, Translate, Videos, etc.
  • MCC Library resources (books and articles) are findable in Google Scholar. You must first go into the settings and add McHenry County College Library, save it, and then search. Items that the library owns will be indicated to the right with a Find it @MCC link.
  • Search within a specific domain or site. Example: site:.edu    Example: site:.cdc.gov   *Do not leave any spaces after the colon.*

Evaluating Websites

  • Neither the look and feel of a website (is it professional, slick, and free of errors) nor the domain (.org, .com, .edu) is a clear indication of the quality and credibility of a site. 
  • It is important to be able to identify the purpose of the site, which isn't always obvious, and who is behind the site. A commercial site like the New York Times is not inherently bad because it is a .com. A page on an educational site might actually be a student post on their college website, which isn't bad, but may not be authoritative. An organization might look like a non-profit, but actually be backed by special interests. 
  • Take a cursory look at the website. Now, look up info about the site on Google. This is called lateral searching. Once you have done this, come back to the site and look at it more closely. Not all websites are going to be transparent. That is why you have to go outside of the site itself to help determine its quality. 
  • It is also helpful to remember that the first websites at the top of the page are not necessarily the best, so be sure to look further down or even on the next page. 

Recommended Websites

SIC and NAICS Codes

Starting your business or industry research

To use many information sources, you must know the industry classification codes for the industry or company you want to research. Do you know your SIC and NAICS codes? If not, click here for NAICS codes.  (HINT:  It's pronounced "NAKES" codes)

Industry Codes

An industry code is a number that represents an industry or type of business. These codes were developed by the U.S. government to make it easier to group businesses into categories called "industries," and to collect information about those industries.

Until 1997, the government used the Standard Industrial Classification system (often called "SIC"). SIC codes are four-digit numbers. The government now uses a system called North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS). NAICS codes are five- or six-digit numbers.

For example, the SIC code for the ice cream manufacturing industry is "2024." The NAICS code for the same industry is "311520."

Many business information sources are arranged by SIC or NAICS codes, so it's helpful to know your code(s) to find the information you need.