Recently, a client wanted to make some pretty significant business decisions around service offerings and pricing. He felt stuck in his analysis because he didn’t have a good sense of who his top customers were and what services they were typically purchasing. He wanted to answer two questions: 1) Who are my top customers, and 2) Which top customers are using the service I am looking to change?
It is amazing how we all work so hard in our businesses, but for whatever reason we never ask these simple questions or just don’t know how to find the answer. We spend so much time running the business that we don’t take a step back to understand what is really going on.
Most of the time when I speak to clients about their numbers, we are focused on their overall results and/or their potential tax liabilities. But deep in that financial information are the details that are integral to making key business decisions.
In the example above, we were able to pull detailed transactional level data out of his Xero account and use Excel functions to compile, sort, and summarize the data to answer his questions. The results were not what he expected. He was not only surprised by the names of his top 50 customers, he was shocked by his top 10.
We were able to show him which of his top 50 customers were using the service he was looking to change pricing on and the results helped steer his decision making.
A few takeaways from this – Take the time to analyze the data. Sometimes what we think we know about our business isn’t really the case. Look for the answers to these types of questions often. Know that there are many answers hidden deep in your financial data and we can help you understand.