How to Harness U.S. Census Data to Masterfully Organize Your Food Brand’s Sales Across America


The U.S. food market is a labyrinth of opportunities and challenges. To navigate it successfully, you need more than just a great product—you need data-driven insights. U.S. Census data offers a wealth of information that can help you organize your sales efforts with precision. This guide will provide you with a comprehensive framework, breaking down the U.S. market into regions, divisions, and states, to help you tailor your sales strategies effectively.

Why Census Data is Your Secret Weapon

The U.S. Census Bureau collects a plethora of data that can be invaluable for food brands. From demographics to economic indicators, this data can serve as the backbone of your sales and marketing strategy, helping you identify lucrative markets and consumer trends.

Organizing Your USA Geography Sales Market Area

USA Regions and Divisions

Consumer Product and Food Companies often segment the U.S. market into two sets of sub-national areas: 9 census divisions nested within 4 census regions. Here’s a detailed breakdown:

The Northeast Region

  • New England Division: Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont
  • Middle Atlantic Division: New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania

The Midwest Region

  • East North Central Division: Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin
  • West North Central Division: Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota

The South Region

  • South Atlantic Division: Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia
  • East South Central Division: Alabama, Kentucky, Mississippi, Tennessee
  • West South Central Division: Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Texas

The West Region

  • Mountain Division: Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, Wyoming
  • Pacific Division: Alaska, California, Hawaii, Oregon, Washington

Important Nielsen Metropolitan Areas within Regions

These metropolitan areas are key markets that can be the focus of your targeted sales strategy:

  • Albany, Atlanta, Baltimore, Birmingham, Boston, Buffalo/Rochester, Charlotte, Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Dallas, Denver, Des Moines, Detroit, Grand Rapids, Hartford-New Haven, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Little Rock, Los Angeles, Louisville, Memphis, Miami, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, Nashville, New Orleans-Mobile, New York, Oklahoma City-Tulsa, Omaha, Orlando, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Pittsburgh, Portland, Raleigh-Durham, Richmond-Norfolk, Sacramento, Salt Lake City-Boise, San Antonio, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle, St Louis, Syracuse, Tampa, Washington DC, West Texas

We’ve taken the Census regions, divisions, states, and important markets and organized them into a document for your use and download. LINK


How to Utilize This Data for Sales Optimization

  1. Sales Regions and Divisions: Utilize Census structure for designing your sales territories and region organization. Nest the states within this structure for better organization and alignment with market efforts.
  2. Demographic Targeting: Use Census data to identify key demographics that align with your product offerings.
  3. Geographic Focus: Utilize the regional and divisional breakdown to prioritize your sales efforts.
  4. Economic Indicators: Leverage economic data to inform your pricing and promotional strategies.
  5. Competitive Analysis: Use the geographic data as a starting point for a more in-depth competitive analysis.
  6. Trend Analysis: Keep an eye on Census reports to adapt to emerging consumer behaviors and preferences. Also, compare per capita consumption within regions, states, and divisions to better understand effectiveness.


The U.S. Census data is not just a collection of numbers; it’s a strategic tool that can help you understand the American consumer in unparalleled depth. By leveraging this data, you can craft a sales strategy that is not only effective but also innovative, setting your food brand apart in a crowded marketplace.

Take Action Now!

Ready to transform your food brand with data-driven insights? Book a consultation at to leverage U.S. Census data for unparalleled market insights.

Who is Tim“Hi I’m Tim, and I love the food business! I’ve been helping large and small companies and entrepreneurs achieve success for decades. My consulting projects have contributed to major successes for my clients, including many with 100%+ year-over-year growth rates. I enjoy sharing my expertise, and hope you find these blog posts enlightening. Please reach out to me with any questions or comments.”

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