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How to get the most out of SourceBook

So you've received your 2005 edition of the San Diego SourceBook, an invaluable business resource published annually by The Daily Transcript.

How can you get the best use out of this publication, today and throughout the year?

To help you dig deeper into the many layers of the SourceBook, we offer you this quick tutorial of its complementary electronic database. It's intended to serve as a practical guide to a practical tool.

For instance, it's important to know that The Daily Transcript's Web site is designed for navigation, rather than as a search engine. In other words, instead of performing a random keyword search, you'll find items more quickly if you can page through to the correct corner of the Web site.

The SourceBook is meant as an everyday reference tool. The print version is where the supply of data begins, serving as an index to what you can find on our Web site.

The SourceBook is valuable to you as a research base and as a supply of sales leads and contact information as it is continually updated, a mechanism the Internet can uniquely offer.

SourceBook homepage

The San Diego SourceBook starts at sourcebook.sddt.com.

On this page you should be able to still see the left navigation bar available on every page of our Web site, and the familiar San Diego Source logo at the top, left-hand side of the page. That logo will always take you back to the Source's main homepage. The link that says "San Diego SourceBook" in the left navigation bar will always take you back to the SourceBook's homepage.

Just like with the print version, the online version has businesses and articles grouped by region. Broadly, you can search by Southern California, or through the entirety of San Diego County.

More narrowly, you can search corners of the county, to the north, south, east and central. There's a breakdown, too, of several big cities in each pocket of the county.

Business listings

There are several ways to get to the business listings. One of the most direct ways is to go to the "Business Listings" tab at the top of the San Diego SourceBook homepage.

That should take you to sourcebook.sddt.com/2005/Listings.cfm.

Business rankings are organized alphabetically and also by category. For instance, to find a list of casinos, alphabetically you might find the link after "Biomed & Biotech Firms." By category, casinos are also grouped under "Business and Business Services," just after "Auto Dealers."

Searching by industry

Once you've identified the industry you're interested in, you should be able to click on that link -- for instance, "General Contractors" -- to pull up its list.

Companies within each list are ranked by various criteria, such as alphabetically, by number of employees or even by square footage. The ranking isn't intended as an endorsement of any company, nor does its placement on the list indicate its quality or service.

Here you will be able to find relevant, basic data about each company. In the case of the "General Contractors" list, data include the number of annual contracts, the worth of those contracts, employee headcount and what year each company was founded.

You'll see that each company's name is also a link to more specifics, such as contact information and revenue history; each listing indicates the date when it was last updated. Most of the profiles even include a link to the company's own Web site, and a mapping tool to pinpoint the location of a company and get driving directions to its facility.

Try it out Ultimately, the best way to learn how the San Diego Source is configured is to try it out firsthand. The Web site is designed to be both intuitive and seamless.

There is no one, narrow way to find something on www.sddt.com. There are many ways.

You'll find throughout the print version of the San Diego SourceBook helpful links to the online version. Use both to get the full benefit of the information that has been amassed.

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