Right, we’ve looked at goal setting, and then putting in place the systems and habits to get things done.
We’ve even stopped to look at how to be productive with our time (because I’d much rather get more done in less time, than lose whole days achieving nothing)…
But (come on, you know there is always a but…)
But… are you actually tracking the results.
There is a popular quote, saying
“Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”
Yet funnily enough, it is what most of us do, day in, day out, in business.
We say we are going to have a great day/week/month/year… and we start new habits and a large to do list… but didn’t actually take a moment to look at what was working for us and what wasn’t.
This means we end up not doing a heap of things that were actually working, and start doing a heap of things that just take up time, but don’t really get great results.
Which is where tracking comes in…
What should you be tracking?
Even if you don’t track anything else, you should be tracking your income. If nothing else, you’ll need these details for your tax.
You might have outsourced this task to your bookkeeper, but it is still important to know your own numbers.
Don’t just track the number of $ you make each day
Make sure you know which products or services sold, and what made you that money.
It is all well and good to know how much you are making, but if you are hemorrhaging that money in unnecessary expenses, then you’re not actually making any profit.
Knowing where your money is going will allow you to see if there are ways you can reduce your expenses. This might mean changing service providers, or getting rid of subscription services that you aren’t using.
If you know your income, and your expenses, then it is easy to keep an eye on your profit.
It is all well and good to say you have a “6-figure business” or a “million dollar turnover”, but if your expenses outweighed your income, then you have no profit.
Make sure you track the profit. Ideally, you want to know the profit margin of each sale, so you can see which products and services are worth selling.
But, if nothing else, make sure that you know the difference between your income and expenses to see how much profit you are actually making.
If you spend a lot of time blogging (and let’s be honest, it is far more time consuming writing a blog than most people account for), then it is important to know if it is actually working for you.
Is that page getting any traffic? Is that traffic coming from SEO and Google searches, or from your social media? Is anyone sticking around to read the post? Is it a subject that resonates with your audience?
The numbers will show you!
Same as above, it is all well and good emailing your list on a regular basis (eg, sending out a newsletter) but are your emails actually getting opened and read? Is anyone clicking on the links inside the email?
Which ones get the most opens? Which ones get the most clicks? Which subjects are your subscribers most interested in?
You can guess the answers to all of those questions… OR you could track the numbers and know for sure.
If email marketing is an important part of your strategy (and let’s be honest here, for just about every business I’ve come across, it is!) then you will want to track your list size.
However, the phrase “It’s not the size that matters, but what you do with it that counts” fits so well here (pun intended).
Having a huge email list is great, but if you are fans are uninterested, your open rate is really low, or their is almost no click through, then it’s not going to work for you.
Rather than simply focusing on the number, make sure you work on having a list of highly engaged fans who actually want to hear from you. It will work far better for you than just having a huge list.
Social Media metrics
You can also track all of your social media stats. This could be likes, fans and followers across all of your profiles.
Be careful with this one though, as they are also called Vanity Metrics.
1 million fans might look great, but if you aren’t converting them, or monetizing them, then is there any point to growing the numbers there.
Focus on making sure that you numbers are working for you, and that you aren’t trying to grow the number of “likes” you have, just because you think you should.
Number of customers or sales is far more important to you than number of likes on a page.
And plenty of other things too…
There are a million and one things that you COULD track in your business.
But, rather than getting caught up in what everyone else is looking at, take a moment to work out which numbers are important to you.
You could track your stats by hand in a notebook, in a spreadsheet, or using online software, it is completely up to you.
At the end of the day, the power comes in knowing the numbers, it doesn’t matter where they are written.
I have a simple spreadsheet, and sit down at the beginning of every month to look at how things are going compared to the month before.
How about you?
Do you track the numbers in your business?
What other figures do you track?
How often do you track your numbers?
Let us know in the comments below.
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