When you are starting out in business you are so busy being Jill of trades that you can’t seem to find the time to set and monitor monthly goals. However, there is something in the saying ‘fail to plan, plan to fail’ because you can’t be busy for the sake of being busy. You need a direction of travel and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to know that your business is growing (and opportunities to celebrate along the way – hurray!).
So, what are the 7 pieces of business data that you should be setting and tracking every month?
1. Total Revenue -how much do you want to earn in gross sales this month? This target feeds into your yearly revenue number and includes the 30% on top that you need to account for tax and NIC contributions plus profit.
2. Expenditure – keep it lean and keep it clean. Particularly when you are starting out in business and developing your proof of concept. If you are solopreneur think ‘borrow, barter and bargain’ when buying or acquiring resources for your start-up business. You will know when the time is right to invest in the big-ticket items (e.g., website, software, graphic designer, virtual assistant) because the investment will help you increase your revenue.
3. Net Profit/Loss – the first two stats should be part of your simple monthly accounting to help you arrive at this figure. Don’t get disheartened if you are making a loss early on. It takes businesses 2-3 years to break even, let alone turn a profit. However, build profit into your pricing right from the start.
4. Net Income – a stat that often gets overlooked is how much money you are making minus the 30% additional costs on top. Net income informs pricing. Particularly for service-based businesses. Therefore, if you have an income goal make sure your pricing covers your profit and expenditure and the 30% on top!
5. Social Media Stats – setting and tracking the number of followers helps you grow your community and keep an eye on content that does or does not resonate with your ideal client. You will need to more of the former to increase followers and engagement.
6. Website Traffic – whether you will have a website from the start or it will come on board later, setting targets for web traffic and monthly monitoring with google analytics is a digital habit to get into. It enables you to build on your strengths and address areas for improvement.
7. One thing that you achieved – let’s face it entrepreneurship is a marathon and not a sprint. Therefore, it is important to celebrate your wins along the way. It shows how far you have traveled and gives you the confidence to keep going because action builds confidence.
Want to know more?
Learn more about business planning and goal setting with Carrie Green at the Female Entrepreneur Association here
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