What Are the Consultants' Sources of Information?
Three-quarters of the respondents to our 2008 Consultants Survey said they obtain their site selection information from the Internet. Importantly, nearly 60 percent also use site magazines like Area Development, more than double the percentage reading general business publications for this type of information (Chart AA).
Nearly all of the respondents who use the Internet obtain website addresses from general search engines like Google or Yahoo. Yet more than two-fifths (43 percent) of those using the Internet for site information also get website addresses off of print ads in magazines such as ours (up from 33 percent making this claim last year). More than a third of the responding consultants also obtain website addresses from ads on websites like Area Development Online (Chart BB).
Finally, although 83 percent of those responding to our Consultants Survey found economic development websites most useful, nearly half of the respondents also found online site magazines such as Area Development Online and property databases like FastFacility.com equally useful (Chart CC).
In sum, the responses to our 2008 Consultants Survey were gathered during late summer and do not reflect the events taking place in the financial markets and throughout many manufacturing and other industries during the last quarter of 2008. The consultants' responses also differ - sometimes markedly - from those given by the corporate respondents. Remember that many of the corporate respondents claim they do not use the services of consultants when site selecting, and the consultants' reported client base includes many of the types of companies that were not well represented by the corporate respondents. In any event, the two sets of responses make for an interesting perspective on location analysis and facilities plans for the years ahead.