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About Business Surveys

Component ID: #ti867244412

The U.S. Census Bureau measures the pulse of the American economy through its business surveys and censuses.  Business data collected from various sectors of the economy, such as, manufacturing, construction, retail trade, and health care, along with data collected from state and local governments and international trade provide the most up to date economic view of the country.  Our statistics help businesses compare their operations to industry norms, find new markets and inform key decisions.

Component ID: #ti198227501
Business Survey

We conduct more than 60 monthly, quarterly, annual and periodic surveys and censuses throughout the year and while some survey participation is voluntary, Federal law mandates participation in many of our business surveys.  Even so, we want to encourage businesses to participate for the following reasons:

  • The data we collect is important to their industry, community and business
  • Federal, state and local government agencies use the data to gauge the effectiveness of their programs
  • Trade Associations and Chambers of Commerce rely on the information we collect for economic development and business decisions
  • Government agencies, business organizations and their analysts rely on the data for planning and key economic reports
  • The data we collect is an essential tool for policymakers who need to make informed decisions

Component ID: #ti198227502

How we collect the data

When a business is selected to participate in a survey or census, they will receive a survey invitation via mail, email or fax. The invitation will provide the instructions, and credentials needed to complete the survey. The invitation will also contain information letting them know:

  • Why the information is needed;
  • That response is confidential;
  • When the response is due.

Some businesses may be contacted prior to receiving a letter as a few of our economic surveys conduct pre-screener operations to confirm/collect contact information or to determine eligibility.

Once we receive the data, we review and analyze the data extensively and take special precautions to avoid the disclosure of our sources.

Component ID: #ti1145936635

Is the Survey or Census Legitimate?

Below are a few common items you can use to verify the legitimacy of this survey:

  1. Ensure the Web address provided in the letter is a "census.gov" domain.
  2. Correspondence will contain reporting instructions and a toll-free number for survey assistance.
  3. On the log-in screen, a warning message should be present stating the respondent is accessing a U.S. Government computer.

For more information on survey legitimacy or to learn more about a particular survey, click on the “List of Business Surveys” link in the next section.  Once you see the particular survey you want, click on the “Information for Respondents” section for further details.

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