It’s tax return time again, and what are you doing?
- Scrabbling around, a bit panicky, trying to get figures together in time?
- Getting someone else doing it for you right now?
- Filed your return way before Christmas?
I’m glad to say I fall into the third category, and it was easy to provide the information to my accountant because I’d kept my monthly figures up to date throughout the year. I have a relatively complex set of figures to keep, but still, it was easy getting them all together.
However, it reminded me that this year I’d been not so good about practicing what I preach, and I spent a lot of last weekend getting everything up to date, so that next year’s return can be filed any time after April 2015.
But even if your tax return isn’t a problem for you, what about knowing exactly what’s going on in your business on a day to day basis?
Could you tell me what percentage of people buy which of your products or services? Or how many on your mailing list signed up for your latest offering? Or what your conversion rate is from opt ins on your mailing list to clicking through to your webpage?
Why is this important? Because figures, systems and monitoring are like a road map in your business. They tell you where to go, instead of driving round the countryside, wondering which road will get to you your destination.
This wasn’t the case with the recent Get Your Year in Gear Giveaway event that I was part of. Not only was I in a country I didn’t know well at all, I wasn’t using the road map. Here’s what happened.
The community of coaches I belong to were holding this event, which meant I felt 100% happy about telling you all about it, because I knew most of the other people offering some really great free products. There were lots of coaches participating and it was going out to hundreds of thousands of people, so I got excited.
My free offering was (and still is) The 3 Radical Income Welcome Principles, and I got all the back office stuff set up, checked the links and started telling people about it.
The statistics page for the event was exciting to watch, as you could see how others were progressing, as well as how many clicks on my page. And every day there would be more – yes, it’s a really great way to build a mailing list!
After a few days, I realized no one had bought the full Radical Income Welcome Toolkit, on offer for a very reasonable price when you clicked on a link at the end of the Principles. That seemed a bit odd, considering that by now hundreds of people had downloaded them – and that’s when I found out that the link in the document had stopped working. Had it ever been working? Don’t know; it had on the test run.
When a link doesn’t work, it gives a really bad impression, like you don’t care that much. Of course it’s been amended now, although it took quite some time to work out what was going on. Why?
Why? Because I hadn’t been checking the StatCounter statistics on a daily basis – not only that, I hadn’t fully understood them anyway.
Oh dear. It wasn’t the end of the world re possible sales being lost, as adding people to my mailing list was what was really important to me.
But I felt mortified that most of these people didn’t get a great impression of me right at the start. Bit of a blunder there.
So what’s the learning here? That’s where the 3 unsexy but essential pointers come in.
- Face Your Figures – keep your figures up to date at least on a monthly basis. Not only does that make your tax return easy to do, it gives you vital information about where your business really is in relation to where it is going. Which means you can correct if you need to, before you end up down a dead end lane in the countryside with no idea where you are or what to do.
- See Your Statistics – all pages of your website or landing pages need to have Google Analytics or StatCounter on them. This will then give you lots of information about who is visiting your pages, how long they stay on them, where they come from, and all sorts of other conversion rates.
- Meet Up with Your Monitoring – you need to visit your statistics regularly! They are your map, and you need to read it. Otherwise you might as well not have one. If you have a mindset that says ‘figures = boring; statistics = even more boring’, then this needs to change.
When you understand figures and stats are key to you being able to navigate well in the countryside, meaning you can much more easily get to your destination, then they become very precious indeed.
So where are you with figures, stats and monitoring them?
Which area of the map is essential for you to improve on?
I invite you this week to take one small step in the right direction to where you want to go, by identifying which of these areas are most needing your attention, and then specifically which step you’re going to take, and by when.
What am I going to do? Familiarise myself to the point where I feel really comfortable with how StatCounter works, and I’ll do that by this time next week.
What will you do, and by when?
And if you know you need someone to help you read your map, connect with me through a free Spirit in Business Strategy session, where you’ll end up:
- knowing exactly where you’re going
- where you are on the map
- what’s likely to get in your way of getting there (apart from not knowing your numbers!)
- be inspired to get going again!
Scroll down on this page to find the form to apply – I only have 4 spots available, so listen to any inner promptings you have and complete the form now!
PS: If you want the chance to participate in the Giveaway, you still can until 28th January, click here (yes, it does work!)