What is a KPI? (Key Performance Indicator)

What is a KPI?

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are metrics that enable a company to measure its performance against specific goals. KPIs are often used as a management tool to evaluate the effectiveness of a company, division, department and individual employees.

KPIs can measure the success of your marketing campaigns, product launches and even customer service efforts. They can also help you determine if your employees are meeting quotas or expectations. Failure to meet a KPI may alert you to an area that needs improvement. There are also many KPIs that any business owner should familiarize themselves with.

Why are KPIs important in a business?

A company’s goal is the reason it exists. It is important to be able to identify your business goals as they can help you decide what data to collect, how you will use your KPIs and how you will measure success.

For example: If your main goal is to sell more products, sales revenue is a good KPI to track. But if your main goal is customer satisfaction, the customer satisfaction score is more appropriate.

The first step in defining your KPIs is to ask yourself what you want to achieve with your business. Here are some questions you can ask yourself when setting your goals: What problem are we solving? What unique value do we deliver?

What types of KPIs are there?

– Financial KPIs

Financial key performance indicators (KPIs) are key performance indicators that measure a company’s financial health. Investors and managers can use financial KPIs to assess a company’s performance, e.g. whether it makes money or loses money.

There are two main types of financial KPIs:

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for cash flows: Looks at how much cash is coming in and out of a business. They include sales, purchases, inventory, receivables and payables.

Profitability Key Indicators (KPIs) :; Elaborate on a company’s profitability by looking at its gross profit margin and operating costs to determine if it has enough money left over after paying operating costs to make a profit.

– Operational KPIs

Operational KPIs are the key performance indicators that measure whether a company can perform its day-to-day activities. These metrics reflect how well a company is meeting its strategic goals, including increased revenue, declining costs, and improved customer satisfaction.

Here are some examples of operational KPIs:

Cash flow : This KPI measures how much money a company has available for operations and growth. It monitors overtime income and expenses to ensure cash flows in and out of the business appropriately.

Customer Satisfaction : This goal measures how customers feel about a company’s products or services and their experience with the company’s customer service. If your customers are not happy with the product, they will not buy from you again, which means less revenue for your business. By following this measurement over time, you can identify areas where improvements need to be made so that more satisfied customers will continue to buy from you in the future.

Cost of customer acquisition: This measurement shows how much it costs your business to acquire new customers, including advertising costs and sales costs associated with each customer.

KPIs for human resources

Some of the most commonly used KPIs in human resources include:

Graduation rate: This is the percentage of employees who leave their jobs voluntarily or involuntarily in a given period. The attrition rate can be calculated by dividing the number of people who left their jobs by the total number of employees in a given period.

Retention Percentage : This indicates how well an organization retains its employees. It can be calculated by dividing the number of employees who stay with their current employer for more than a year by the total number of employees who were employed during the same period.

Employee Satisfaction Index : This shows whether employees are satisfied at work or not. The employee satisfaction index can be determined through surveys and interviews with employees on various aspects such as. wages, benefits or working conditions.

– Marketing KPIs

Marketing KPIs are important performance indicators that measure the effectiveness of your marketing efforts. They can be used to evaluate the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns, measure customer loyalty and identify new growth opportunities.

We are a specialized SEO agency , and therefore these KPIs are among those we often analyze. However, they are applicable in all branches of digital marketing.

Marketing KPIs can be divided into a few categories:

KPIs for lead generation

They are used to measure lead generation effort. Examples include the number of leads generated, costs per. lead, conversion rate and lead quality (ie qualification rate).

KPIs for customer retention

They measure how well you retain your current customers and how often they buy from you (ie the customers’ lifetime value). This includes measurements such as average order value, customer departure rate, customers’ lifetime value, and customer acquisition costs.

Types of KPIs that are related to decision making

It is important to choose KPIs that are useful for decision making. These measurements must be relevant, applicable and specific.

Relevance: Relevant KPIs give you the information you need to make the right decisions. For example, if you have a webshop and want to know how many customers return products, the number of returns must be a KPI, the average order value can be a relevant KPI.

Activity: KPIs that can be used for action help you make decisions and take action based on them. If your website e.g. have multiple pages with similar content, but with different layouts or design styles, the bounce rate can be a KPI that can be used to act because it shows how well visitors are finding what they need on the website. To improve this measurement, test different layouts and design styles until one of them surpasses the others in terms of retaining visitors.

Specificity: Specific KPIs provide a clear direction for improvement efforts by focusing on specific aspects of your company’s or website’s performance rather than broad categories such as “engagement” or “conversion rates”. Instead of looking at engagement as an overarching category that includes all types of activity, you can e.g. look at session duration.

Tips to get the most out of KPIs to strengthen your business

Use measurements to assess your strategy.

When deciding which KPIs to use, you need to start by identifying your goals. Next, consider which measurements will be most helpful in achieving these goals. If your goal e.g. is to increase sales, a KPI can be “number of sales per. month”. If your goal is to reduce customer complaints by 10%, a KPI can be “number of customer complaints per month”.

Once you have identified the KPIs that will help you achieve your goals, it is important to ensure that they are accurate and relevant enough to be useful. You want them to reflect exactly what they need to meditate to be meaningful – so if there are several ways to measure something, they should all measure the same thing in the same way; Focus on the basics.

Keep things simple but relevant.

It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of creating a new KPI system. You want to include all sorts of information that may be useful. Still, it would help if you keep in mind that your KPI tool is not a database and you should focus on keeping your KPIs as simple as possible by focusing only on the most essential information for them.

For example, if you track traffic to your website, do not provide all the details about each visitor – just provide the most important information that can help you understand the type of people who visit your site and how they got there. If you are tracking sales, do not include every single item sold – include only the most important and omit everything else.

Understand the trend

One of the most important aspects of KPIs is identifying trends. If you can not find a trend in your data, it is difficult to figure out how to make improvements. This is especially true in areas such as sales and marketing, where you may be looking for trends over longer periods of time.

In order to identify trends, it is important to look at the same measurements over different periods. For example, if you analyzes sales figures from last year, you should also analyze the same figures from previous years so that you can see if the figures for this year are significantly different from previous years.

Another way to find trends is by comparing different measurements with each other. If your company e.g. has two stores, and one store has experienced a 20% increase in sales, while the other store has only experienced a 5% increase in sales, this may indicate that there may be some kind of problem with this business in relative to the other, and then it becomes easier for management to identify what specifically needs to be improved on each business based on these results.

Make use of a mix of KPIs

While you can track many different things, there are some KPIs that all companies need to have in place. You should e.g. create a standard KPI for customer satisfaction and one for revenue growth so you can measure how well your business is doing and make changes as needed.

In addition to these standard KPIs, there are other types of KPIs that can be particularly useful in certain scenarios. For example, if you want to get an idea of how loyal customers are to your brand and how likely it is that they will recommend it to others.

You may want to consider creating a KPI around customer retention.

If this number is low, it could mean that your customers are not happy with what they are getting from your business, which means more needs to be done.

This also shows how important it is to use different KPIs.

How are KPI scores calculated?

KPIs need to be relevant to your business goals, measurable and easy to understand. They should also be specific enough for you to clearly see when your goal has been reached. Eg. “increased sales” is too broad a goal; “Increased sales of product X by 25% compared to last year” is more specific and measurable.

The best KPIs are those that help you see progress towards a goal, but which are not so narrow that they are only useful for one purpose or one time period. For example, if you want to improve customer satisfaction , you can start with an overall score on a scale of 1-10 and then divide it into subcategories such as. order friendliness, product quality and customer service responsiveness. This way, you can still make improvements in specific areas, even if your overall score does not change much from year to year, even if it does not change much from year to year .

Track the right KPIs for your business

The right KPI depends on your business model. Follow the right KPIs for your business model.

For example, if you To optimize your webshop it is important to know how many visitors come to your site each day and how much they spend. If you are a B2B business, it may be more important to know how many leads you close each month than how many visitors come to your site each day.

Track multiple KPIs so you can evaluate different aspects of your business effectively. For example, if you is a webshop and wants to increase sales by 10% this year, you need to follow both the conversion rate and the traffic growth. That way, you can see if traffic growth slows, but conversions increase a little more than expected due to marketing efforts, then there may still be hope of achieving the 10 percent increase in sales.

Use KPIs to monitor your company’s results

So how can you use KPIs to monitor your company’s performance?

Create KPIs for each function in the organization. For example, if you have an online retail store, create KPIs for customer service, sales and marketing, etc. That way, you can measure each department’s performance separately.

Use KPIs to benchmark your performance against your competitors and industry standards. This will help you identify areas where you need to improve or areas where you are doing well compared to others in similar industries.

Monitor KPIs regularly so that if there are changes in trends or patterns, they can be identified early enough to take corrective action before things get worse or before they become too big a problem.

Which KPIs should you monitor?

Choose metrics that can help you determine if your project is on track or not and allow you to compare results over time. If your goal e.g. is to increase sales by 30%, a CPI can be revenue growth over time. Other examples include:

  • Number of leads generated by an online advertising campaign
  • Average customer retention
  • Percentage of customers who renew their subscription or membership
  • Percentage of positive reviews on TrustPilot

Improving KPIs when results are not as expected

To improve the KPIs, identify the root cause of the problem. If the KPIs do not improve over a period of time, it means that something is wrong with your team or process that needs to be corrected as soon as possible.

Once you have identified the root cause of the problem, you can take some corrective steps to improve these KPIs. You can also find some innovative methods that can help improve these KPIs in the future.

How to analyze KPI results?

Analyzing your KPI dashboard is a great way to improve your business, but you also need to understand what the numbers mean. If you get 30% conversion rates, it’s not necessarily good or bad. You need to know what percentage of visitors are converting before you can decide if your conversion rate is high or low.

Here are some questions you can ask yourself when analyzing your KPI dashboard:

Is my conversion rate higher than the average for my industry?

This will help you compare your site with the competitors in your industry. The best way to do this is to use Google .

How is my conversion rate compared to last month ?

If your conversion rate has increased compared to last month, then it is due to something specific that has happened on your website. (eg a campaign), or is it due to changes in traffic patterns? Within SEO , we often work on optimizing the conversion rate for organic traffic with an SEO report . This way we can dive into the data and see how we can make improvements and perhaps adjust the SEO strategy .

What happens when I look at different segments of visitors ?

When looking at segments, be sure to compare data from apples to apples – ie. Do not compare visitors coming from social media with those coming from search engines or email marketing campaigns unless they have similar characteristics (e.g. demographic characteristics).


KPIs help measure the success of your business by providing important factors that show how well it is performing. These factors can include sales, profits, costs and even customer satisfaction. If you really want to increase your company’s productivity and performance, you should take advantage of KPIs. By using them you will be able to track what works and what does not work. You should change everything that does not work for your business until you know that it provides improvements on the bottom line of your business.


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