Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh is committed to helping entrepreneurs and small businesses succeed by providing access to leading-edge research resources and quality assistance from experienced business librarians.
Identifying Competitors, Partners and Customers
Use our subscription databases to build mailing and telephone lists of potential clients. Locate potential business partners, perform competitive intelligence research and identify market trends. Focus on finding the pulse of a neighborhood, or expand your scope internationally. Specialized print business directories are also available for reference at CLP – Downtown & Business.
Read and review trade journals for market research and industry information. Use United States Census data to learn more about your customer base. Find industry surveys and information for tracking trends through our databases.
A strong business plan is key for securing funding for your enterprise. View free sample business plans online for many different types of businesses or visit CLP – Downtown & Business for print sample plans. Use business plan materials in-person, or use your library card to access a fillable business plan template and other business related do-it-yourself legal forms through Gale Legal Forms. Additional free business plan templates for start-ups and established businesses are available from our partner SCORE.
Registering Your Business
Visit local and state sites for licensing and registration information. Contact us for assistance identifying duplicate business names and more. Free guides and pamphlets from federal, state and local government offices are also available for entrepreneurs in the Small Business section at CLP – Downtown & Business.
Contact our local partners for additional assistance for seeking funding, continuing education and special support for women- and minority-owned businesses.
- Bridgeway Capital: Provides capital and educational support in Southwestern Pennsylvania
- Kiva Zip: A micro-financing site that connects funders and entrepreneurs
- SBA (Small Business Administration), Pittsburgh District Office: The local office for the federal department provides programming and support to area entrepreneurs
- SCORE (Service Corps of Retired Executives), Pittsburgh Chapter: SCORE provides free and confidential business counseling for starting and growing a small business. SCORE counselors are located at 411 Seventh Ave. Suite 1450. Call 412.395.6560 to make an appointment.