PEST analysis

Similar looking template to the SWOT, however this time the PEST focuses on the macro environment and is a technique for analysing the influences external to your organisation.

It breaks down the external factors which impact the business, segmented according to political, economic, socio-cultural, and technological aspects. 

These macro influences are outside of the control of the organisation.  While you cannot change them, they can change you!

They can also provide you with interesting content as part of your marketing communications.  It will enable you to identify topics to use in your marketing communications, providing you points to share with others and comment on which affect you or your customers’ industry – demonstrating that you are an expert in your field.

If you want to take it a step further, especially in these changing times, you can extend it to a PESTLE; taking into account the legal and environmentally aspects and implications of your industry.

Sayers Solutions suggests focusing on the first main 4 – PEST – especially on your first attempt.  Unless of course, your business would particularly benefit from focus in those areas. 

However, when repeating the exercise, to deepen the understanding, extending it to include these extended breakdowns of the external environment, is recommended.

What external influences could impact your business?

Here is a broad list for each section.  Try looking through and identifying areas you are aware of and which you might need to improve your knowledge on.

ecological/environmental issues
legislation (current, future, home market, international)
regulatory bodies and processes
government policies
government term and change
trading policies
funding, grants and initiatives
home market lobbying/pressure groups
international pressure groups
wars and conflicts
home economy situation and trends
overseas economies and trends
general taxation issues
taxation specific to product/services
seasonality/weather issues
market and trade cycles
specific industry factors
market routes and distribution trends
customer/end-user drivers
interest and exchange rates
international trade/monetary issues
lifestyle trends
consumer attitudes and opinions
media views
law changes affecting social factors
brand, company, technology image
consumer buying patterns
fashion and role models
major events and influences
buying access and trends
ethnic/religious factors
advertising and publicity
ethical issues
competing technology development
research funding
associated/dependent technologies
replacement technology/solutions
maturity of technology
manufacturing maturity and capacity
information and communications
consumer buying mechanisms/technology
technology legislation
innovation potential
technology access, licencing, patents
intellectual property issues
global communications

Here is your Printable for this section

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