What is a SIC Code?

SIC is an acronym for the Standard Industrial Classification system created in 1937 by the United States. SIC Codes represent different industries. They are commonly used for statistical analyses of businesses in the United States and other countries that have adopted the classification system. In 1997, NAICS (North American Industry Classification System) Codes replaced SIC Codes as the official industry classification system of the United States, although many organizations still use SIC Codes today.

Why a SIC Code is Important?

SIC Codes provide a standardized classification of industries in the United States. Other nations and organizations have also adopted the usage of SIC Codes. Having a standardized classification system for industries allows analysts to easily compare markets and generate statistical reports. 

Organizations can generally get the same benefit from analyzing either an NAICS or SIC Code. Analyses using these codes are performed by many different types of businesses. For example, retailers often analyze new sites or catchments based on the industry landscape of an area. If an area they are considering expanding into already has many retailers, it could indicate that the market is oversaturated, or that retailers tend to succeed there. 

See how SIC Codes can be applied in analytics using Precisely points of interest datasets


Similarly, real estate firms use NAICS and SIC Codes to better understand potential areas of investment. If a business next door to a potential investment property is classified as an industry not compatible with the planned investment, that could impact the firm’s decision. By understanding which industries are active in a particular location, real estate companies can make smarter decisions about their investment portfolios. 

The public sector also uses NAICS and SIC Codes in their analyses. Government agencies analyze locations by NAICS and SIC Codes to inform budget planning, resource allocation, and zoning. Having standardized codes across geographies, whether domestic or international, simplifies the methodology and increases the accuracy of results.

How Precisely Can Help?

NAICS and SIC Codes are commonly used in geospatial analysis. Precisely offers multiple datasets containing NAICS and SIC Codes that enable clients to analyze industries in different locations. 

Precisely Points of Interest datasets provide accurate location and company information for businesses, leisure, and geographic features around the world. These geographic points are appended with NAICS and SIC Codes to indicate which standard industry classification they belong to. This allows address-level examination of the business landscape for highly granular analytics.

Precisely Demographics datasets also include NAICS and SIC Codes, aggregated to standard census geographies. These polygonal datasets provide detailed information about the concentration of industries in specific areas and are useful when analyzing geographic trends and patterns. 

Learn more about Precisely Points of Interest and Precisely Demographics datasets and how SIC Codes can be applied in analytics.