Every day during the course of business multiple metrics are being collected. This includes data such as how someone came to your website, how long a lead took to make a buying decision, and which manual tasks are taking up an inordinate amount of your staff’s time.
With so much incoming information from a variety of different sources, it can be hard to connect it all and transform it into good business decisions It can feel like you’re trying to “read the tea leaves,” and if you read the data wrong, you can end up going down a rabbit hole that’s not going to help you at all.
At Ion Technologies, we help companies understand their data so they can make decisions that will make a positive impact. Through use of business intelligence (BI) dashboards, clients are able to aggregate information from several different sources into comprehensive reports and graphs.
But once you have that data, how do you use it? Which metrics, aka: key performance indicators (KPIs), will help you streamline, improve productivity, and shorten your buying cycle?
Data is becoming a new type of currency in the business world, based upon the premise that knowledge is power. With BI dashboards and knowing which metrics are most important, you can use that data to power change and help your company grow.
Just looking at one report and not correlating that data to another metric can lead you to make the wrong business choices.
For example: You may have hired a new pay-per-click (PPC) advertising team who increases your website traffic. You see a report with higher visitors counts and you think it makes sense to spend more money on your PPC budget.
But another data set from your sales team shows that although website leads have increased, lead quality and close rates have decreased, which would lead you to a completely different decision. That may mean that the PPC ads are targeting the wrong people, and before increasing the budget, the targeting strategy needs to be adjusted.
We’ve found that this type of disconnect is common when not using a single application that can pull everything together. With the help of an intelligent business dashboard company managers get a full view of how all the data in their organization is connecting in a visual format that makes it much easier to analyse and act upon.
Companies with real-time data visualisation increased new accounts by 26% and cash generated from operations by 15%. (Visual Matters)
So, once you’ve got the data, which KPIs have the most impact? Here are the top 10 metrics to review regularly.
1. Sales Revenue
Knowing not just the sales numbers but also where those sales originated can help you drill down into the most effective revenue generating areas of your business.
2. Net Profit
You could be having a banner year, but if you’re unknowingly overspending, it can mean you end up in the red. Net profit takes your expenses into account and helps you keep an eye on your overall gains.
3. Cost of Customer Acquisition
Are you spending more to get a new customer in fancy promotions than the average sale? This is an important metric to watch and optimize.
4. Lead to Conversion Rate
If you’re spending money bringing in leads that don’t convert, it can mean your staff is busy answering questions that never end up in sales. Quality leads are more important that sheer number of leads.
5. Productivity Statistics
If you see a drop in productivity it can help you identify a larger issue before it hurts your business. Productivity can be tied to staff happiness, supplier reliability or the need to upgrade office software or manufacturing equipment.
6. Marketing and Lead Generation
Knowing where to spend your marketing dollars for the most qualified leads can keep you from wasting money on ineffective methods.
7. Customer Loyalty and Retention
Being aware of a downward trend in customer reorders or client retention can alert you to a new competitor in town or the need to increase post sale support.
8. Employee Turnover Rate
Do you find yourself spending more money in training dollars this year than the last? Watching your employee turnover rate can alert you to the need to put more resources into retention programs.
9. Cash Burn Rate
It’s been a great year, but if your cash burn rate has also increased, you’ll know to slow down on the spending before it gets out of hand.
10. Vendor Costs vs Profits
A price increase here and there can add up over time. By monitoring your vendor costs, you can identify any expensive trends and know when it’s time to shop around for alternatives.
If you aren’t sure where to start with harnessing your data, Ion Technologies can help! We’ll show you how you can use a BI dashboard to transform your data into easy-to-read graphical reports that help you make smart decisions.