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May 27, 2024 · 8 min read

Must-know metrics for every business

Ever wonder why some businesses seem to always hit their targets while others struggle? Do you know which KPIs are crucial for your business?


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Ever wonder why some businesses seem to always hit their targets while others struggle? Do you know which KPIs are crucial for your business?
Imagine having a clear map that shows you exactly where your business is excelling and where it needs a boost. By understanding metrics like sales revenue, net profit margin, and monthly recurring revenue, you can steer your company in the right direction. There’s no better feeling than making informed decisions with confidence and watching your business grow. Ready to take your business to the next level? Let’s dive into the essential metrics you need to track.

Business metrics… Why?

Business metrics are quantifiable measures used to track and assess the performance of specific business functions or the overall organization. They provide valuable insights into the effectiveness of strategies, operations, and overall business health, allowing you to monitor progress, identify areas for improvement, and make informed decisions. Metrics serve as a framework for evaluating performance and aligning actions with strategic goals.

Benefits of tracking key metrics

Tracking the right business metrics offers several benefits:

  1. Visibility into achievements: by implementing a robust system of measuring and tracking key performance indicators (KPIs), you gain visibility into your achievements and can make data-driven adjustments to optimize outcomes.
  2. Goal setting and benchmarking: metrics enable you to set targets and measure success against those targets, as well as benchmark your performance against industry peers or internal standards.
  3. Accountability and transparency: clear performance indicators and regular progress reporting foster a culture of accountability, motivating employees to strive for excellence. Metrics provide a common language for communication and align actions with strategic goals.
  4. Data-driven decision making: they serve as a compass, guiding your business toward desired goals and objectives based on concrete evidence rather than operating blindly.
  5. Identifying opportunities: monitoring numbers can help you predict market trends, uncover expansion opportunities, and assess the success of marketing campaigns or customer service strategies.

Challenges of implementing business metrics

Although many know about the importance of tracking progress, many companies struggle to identify which performance indicators will truly drive success. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed with so much data at your fingertips, but not all of it will lead to meaningful action. Here are some common challenges faced:
  • Alignment with business goals: it’s crucial that every metric you track aligns with your broader business objectives. Whether it’s increasing revenue, expanding into new markets, or enhancing customer satisfaction, your KPIs should reflect these goals.
  • Actionability: data without action is a missed opportunity. Focus on metrics that can directly influence your decision-making processes. Enty’s centralized Finance services dashboard provides you with real-time data visualization and analysis, making it easier to interpret your data and take immediate, informed action.
  • Relevance: as your business evolves, so should your metrics. Regularly review and update your KPIs to ensure they remain pertinent to your current objectives. Enty simplifies this process by offering dynamic, customizable dashboards that allow you to adjust your data as needed - choose certain bank accounts, view transactions and keep your data relevant and timely.
  • Context: it’s essential to understand the purpose and impact of each metric within your organization. Metrics should provide context and inspire action, rather than being mere vanity metrics.
By addressing these challenges, you can select and track the right business metrics with confidence. By using the right tools like Enty, you get a holistic approach that not only helps you monitor the financial health of your business but also drives sustainable growth through effective strategic planning and execution.
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Key business metrics to track

There is a wide range of metrics one needs to track to achieve long-term success, but financial ones hold a special place on that list. They provide valuable insights into your profitability, revenue streams, and operational costs, enabling you to make informed decisions.

Financial metrics

Below are a few key financial metrics businesses should monitor.

Revenue

This metric represents the total amount of money your business generates from the sale of products or services within a specific timeframe (e.g., annually, quarterly). Tracking revenue growth year-over-year is vital to gauge your business's trajectory. With Enty, you can

Gross margin

Gross margin is the percentage of revenue your business retains after accounting for the cost of producing your goods or services. A higher gross margin indicates greater efficiency and profitability.

Runway

Also known as the cash runway, this metric indicates how many months your business can continue operating with its current cash reserves before running out of funds. It's essential to maintain a healthy runway to support growth and operations.

Monthly recurring revenue (MRR)

For subscription-based or Software as a Service (SaaS) businesses, MRR represents the predictable revenue generated from existing customers each month. Tracking MRR growth is crucial for these business models.

Customer acquisition cost (CAC)

CAC measures the amount of money your company spends to acquire a new customer, including marketing and sales expenses. Optimizing CAC is key to maximizing profitability.

Annual recurring revenue (ARR)

ARR is the amount of predictable revenue your company expects to generate from customers over a year, based on recurring subscriptions or contracts. It's a valuable metric for forecasting and planning.

Operational metrics

Operational metrics provide insights into the efficiency and productivity of your business processes and operations. By tracking these metrics, you can identify areas for improvement and optimize your workflows. Some key operational metrics to consider include:

Inventory turnover rate

This metric measures the rate at which your business turns over its inventory during a specific period, relative to the cost of goods sold (COGS). It helps assess the efficiency of inventory management and identify potential issues with overstocking or understocking.

Time to proficiency for new hires

This metric tracks the duration it takes for new employees to become fully productive and proficient in their roles. Optimizing this metric can improve operational efficiency and reduce training costs.

Employee productivity

Metrics such as revenue per employee or output per employee can provide insights into the overall productivity of your workforce. Tracking these metrics can help identify areas for improvement or potential bottlenecks.

Sales and marketing metrics

Effective sales and marketing strategies are essential for driving business growth and attracting new customers. To evaluate the performance of your sales and marketing efforts, consider tracking the following metrics:

Conversion rates

Conversion rates measure the percentage of prospects or leads that convert into paying customers. Tracking conversion rates at various stages of the sales funnel can help optimize your marketing and sales strategies.

Marketing qualified leads (MQLs)

MQLs represent the number of leads that meet your predefined criteria for being considered a potential customer. Monitoring MQLs can help assess the effectiveness of your lead generation efforts.

Customer acquisition cost (CAC)

As mentioned earlier, CAC measures the cost of acquiring a new customer. Optimizing CAC is crucial for maximizing the return on investment (ROI) of your marketing and sales efforts.

Sales cycle length

This metric tracks the average time it takes for a lead to progress through the sales funnel and convert into a paying customer. Monitoring sales cycle length can help identify bottlenecks and streamline the sales process.

Customer-related metrics

Satisfied and loyal customers are the foundation of any successful business. To measure customer satisfaction and retention, consider tracking the following metrics:

Customer satisfaction score (CSAT)

CSAT measures how satisfied customers are with your products or services, typically through surveys or feedback forms. A high CSAT score indicates a positive customer experience.

Net promoter score (NPS)

NPS measures the likelihood of customers recommending your business to others, providing insights into customer loyalty and advocacy. A high NPS score suggests strong customer satisfaction and brand affinity.

Customer lifetime value (CLV)

CLV represents the total revenue a customer generates for your business throughout their relationship with your company. Maximizing CLV is crucial for long-term profitability and growth.

Repeat purchase rate

For e-commerce businesses, the repeat purchase rate measures the percentage of customers who make multiple purchases over a given period. A high repeat purchase rate indicates customer loyalty and satisfaction.

Tracking and analyzing business metrics

Effective tracking and analysis of business metrics begin with robust data collection and centralization. Collecting, storing, and managing all data in a single location instead of having it scattered across multiple platforms and vendors is the key to success. This approach provides quick and easy data access, enables a 360-degree view of the business, and supports deep and holistic analysis.

Therefore, organizations should leverage specialized monitoring and reporting tools to effectively track and analyze business metrics. Enty enables business owners to integrate data from your bank accounts by connecting them in a few clicks. The result? All information is centralized, visualized, and can be accessed in real time for informed decision-making.

However, collecting and monitoring data is only the first step; the true value lies in interpreting metric trends and deriving actionable insights. By leveraging Enty AI tools, organizations can recalibrate and execute plans in response to emerging trends. This data-driven approach enables you to stay ahead of the competition, optimize performance, and drive sustainable growth.

Last thoughts

Ultimately, the strategic use of business metrics empowers organizations to stay ahead of the competition, optimize operations, and foster sustainable growth. But that’s not the end of the story - the true magic lies in the ability to track and analyze key business metrics. With Enty’s Finances service, you can gain valuable insights into your business performance, identify areas for improvement, and make data-driven decisions.
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