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Business Studies: Analysis methods

PESTLE Analysis

A PESTLE analysis is a tool used to gain a macro picture of an industry environment. A SWOT analysis concentrates on a company's internal processes and PESTLE provides information on external factors. 

PESTLE stands for Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Legal and Environmental factors. It allows you to gain information on the factors that might impact a new business or industry. Some factors will be more important to different types of businesses, and a PESTLE analysis will help identity risk factors for the SWOT analysis.

There are a range of places you can search to find this information

PESTLE Factors Where to look
Databases Websites

Business Source Complete


Parliamentary websites


Business Source Complete


IBIS World


D&B Hoovers




Social (cultural) Factiva ABS

Business Source Complete


D&B Hoovers

Legal AGIS Plus Text




IBIS World

Web of Science



Research Strategy for Five Forces Analysis

This table directs you to our different library databases where you can analyse the five forces.

Five Forces

Where do I research? (Which database and within that database - which menus do I use?)


1.IBIS World Industry Report menus:

  • Products & Markets: Major Markets, Demand Determinants
  • Competitive Landscape: Basis of Competition

2.Business Source Complete OR ABI/INFORM Collection OR ANZ Newsstream OR Factiva - use keywords to search news articles and trade publications

3.Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) - economic and financial statistics


1.IBIS World Industry Report menus:

  • Products & Markets: Supply Chain
  • Major Companies: Major Players
  • Competitive Landscape: Cost Structure Benchmarks

2.Use company's public investor relations webpage to identify suppliers

Competitive rivalry

1.D&B Hoovers Company Information:

  • Advanced: Competitors, Closest Industry Peers, Closest Companies
  • Industry Information: Challenges, Trends & Opportunities

2.IBIS World Industry Report menus:

  • Major Players
  • Competitive Landscape: Basis of Competition, Barriers to Entry, Market Share Concentration
  • Operating Conditions: Capital Intensity
  • Industry Life Cycle
  • Industry Outlook

3.Business Source Complete and/or ABI/INFORM Collection - locate company profiles (includes information on competitors)

Potential new entrants

1.IBIS World Industry Report menus:

  • Competitive Landscape: Barriers to entry & Cost Structure Benchmarks
  • Operating Conditions: Regulation & Policy, Industry Assistance, Technology & Systems
Firms with Substitute Products

1.Business Source Complete OR ABI/INFORM Collection OR ANZ Newsstream - use keywords  to search news articles and trade publications

2.IBIS World Industry Report menus:

  • Competitive Landscape: Basis of Competition
  • About this industry: Similar Industries, Related International Industries

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