Five metrics you should track for business success

 

 

In business, information is power. It provides the insights you need to craft your strategy for improved efficiency, better results and helps you win more business. That is why metrics are so important. These KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) tell you how well your business is performing, as well as where you should focus your efforts in order to do better.  

Here are five key metrics that will help you make better decisions and take your business to the next stage of its growth. 

 

 

Marketing metrics 

 

Every good business needs a sound marketing strategy. How well your marketing performs will determine how many potential customers find you and do business with you. So it’s important to know what’s working and what isn’t. That way, you can focus your efforts and investment on areas where you’ll see most reward. 

When it comes to marketing metrics, there are several key areas to look at, but one of the most important is digital marketing metrics because it has the potential to deliver the highest ROI.  

Email, for instance, is one of the cheapest ways to market your business. However, simply sending out random emails isn’t going to elicit much success. You need to know how which email campaigns perform best by looking at open and click-through rates, conversions, unsubscribes and revenue per email. By carrying out A/B testing and segmentation, you’ll be able to see which campaigns work best. 

You can do the same with social media. Fortunately, these platforms come equipped with tools that can help you see how well certain strategies are paying off.  

Finally, your website is the core of all your marketing efforts, especially if this is where sales happen. By monitoring traffic and conversion rates, while making changes to landing pages and blogs, you can see what works best. And, of course, there is a range of useful measurement tools out there to help you do it, such as Google Analytics. 

 

 

Customer acquisition and churn  

 

It’s important to know how much it costs to acquire customers, especially if you’re targeting a number of different demographics or segments. This tells you what your ROI is and where you can win more business, more cheaply.  

Knowing what your customer retention or churn numbers are, is equally important, as this is a key indicator of loyalty. Here, you should be measuring key customer retention metrics such as customer lifetime value. This lets you see how well you are meeting customer needs. Making adjustments to products or services can massively improve loyalty as long as you know how your figures change in response to adjustments. The ultimate goal is to identify and focus on your most rewarding audience. 

 

 

Cashflow  

 

The more you know about your finances and cashflow the better. Which is why KoalaPays has integrated a number of features into our payment solution to help you manage your income. Your company’s cashflow statement should tell you a lot about how the business is doing. This is where you’ll see all the details of your income and outgoings. As a result, you’ll know how much you have left to reinvest into the business.  

On the flipside, it will also let you know if the company is losing money. In which case, you can put a remedial action plan in place as soon as possible.  

 

 

Productivity 

 

How productive your employees are will have a massive influence on how successful your business is. And this simply isn’t about how much work they can get done in a paid hour. This is more about how talented they are, and how much they contribute to overall business success. For example, one employee might be able to turn out more product than the employee sat next to him, but whose products are the better quality? 

Measuring productivity isn’t easy but it’s essential if you want to know that something is going wrong. It might be a lack of motivation or morale, or it might be that you don’t have the right employee incentives in place. Until you know where the issue lies, you can’t fix it.  

Set clear objectives and goals for workers, carry out regular customer surveys to make sure customers are happy with the quality of your products, as well as the service they receive. At the same time, engage with your employees and make sure they have everything they need to do a good job and be happy at work. 

 

 

Cost of revenue and profitability 

 

Cashflow might give you a good idea of how your business is doing but costs of revenue can offer real insights on where you can take action to improve profitability. This is defined as the total expenses to make a sale. It’s the cost of producing your product, along with the business expenses and marketing expenses required to sell it 

Business owners are often so focussed on numbers of sales that they neglect this important metric. Aggressively reducing the costs required to make a sale can turn out to be more effective than making several extra sales. Alternatively, look at it as an easy way to boost profits without making extra sales.  

All of these metrics allow you to evaluate the overall health of your business. Doing this regularly allows you to see what’s going right and where you can do better. The insights you gain along the way give you the information you need to make well-informed business decisions and adjustments that help your business succeed for the long term. 

Five ways for small business owners to increase productivity

 

 

If you own a small business, then you probably feel that there isn’t enough time in the day to get everything done. Prioritising tasks when it comes to cashflow, marketing, admin, tax and dealing with customers isn’t easy. Making the most of the time that is available to you, means being as productive as possible.  

Fortunately, there are ways in which you can increase productivity across every area of your operations.  

 

 

Use productivity apps 

 

If you don’t keep track of the various tasks and projects you’re working on, you won’t get much done. Today, there are many productivity apps designed for small businesses and entrepreneurs to help you organise your workload and your time.  

Use bespoke apps such as Evernote to create To-do lists for short, medium and long term goals. Work through them methodically, delegating where you can. Give tasks a due date and a value, in terms of how easy they will be to complete. Work on the most difficult ones early in the day. If you start your day by completing the most difficult task, then that day has already been a success. Review your To-do lists daily to keep them up-to-date, removing tasks that are no longer relevant. 

 

 

Automate your business 

 

The technology is now available to automate many business tasks and processes, such as payroll, invoicing, CRM and even social media. Make use of it. Research the best solutions for your venture’s needs, as well as any services that can make your job easier. The more you can automate, the less you have to do and the more time you have to focus on core business projects.  

Continually review what’s out there that can help. For instance, at KoalaPays, we’re always looking at new ways to automate tasks for our clients through our platform and add new services that make it easier for you to run your business.  

Likewise, if you find that you’re constantly sending the same emails to customers, suppliers or business partners, create templates for them. That way, they become much quicker to deal with.  

 

 

Consider outsourcing 

 

By using a payment solution provider such as KoalaPays, you’re already outsourcing tasks that used to be done in-house or via a bank. You can’t do everything yourself, so consider outsourcing other functions, such as marketing, payroll, or another specialised area to free up more of your time. You’ll also get the expertise you need to run these functions more efficiently. You might even save money. 

Another way to freeing up more of your time through outsourcing is to hire a virtual assistant. This can be done very inexpensively through a freelancing platform, as long as you take the time to find the right person with the best skillset for your needs.  

 

 

The Pareto Principle 

 

The Pareto Principle, also known as the 80/20 rule states that in any project 80% of the results come from 20% of the effort. You can use this rule to decide which tasks you take on, or which to prioritise. This means reviewing every project that comes your way and investing your time on those which will deliver the most results for the least effort.  

Done right, this can massively boost your productivity. For instance, is there a marketing channel that takes up a lot of your time and isn’t delivering solid returns? If so, cut it out and focus your energies on another channel that is delivering more sales for the business. 

 

 

Look after you 

 

The longer you work, the less productive you become. Take time out to recharge your batteries. Make sure you eat healthily, get enough sleep and exercise. That way, when you are at work you know that you’re operating at optimal effectiveness. Spend time on hobbies and with loved ones. This can give added perspective, focus and clarity to why you do what you do in the first place. 

While all of these things can help you be more productive with your time. It’s important to realise that there are certain non-essential tasks that need attention too. Spend a little time, perhaps just fifteen minutes at the end of the day, to focus on non-urgent tasks, such as looking at what your competitors are doingcarrying out market research or simply catching up on industry news. Because these tasks aren’t seen as urgent, or essential, small business owners often neglect them. But, while they may not deliver much in terms of immediate rewards, they can result in unexpected insights or opportunities that benefit the business in the long term 

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