By Ruben Ugarte
Data is the life blood of any SaaS company. Data will empower you to make better decisions and help you grow faster. However, few companies make the most of their existing data or get access to the data they need.
This guide is meant to help you go from zero to analytics proficient as quickly as possible. It doesn’t matter if you’re starting from scratch or if you’re simply trying to level up your existing data strategy. We’ll help you get access to the insights you need to grow your SaaS business.
D.I.G.: Our process for data strategy
The process we use is called D.I.G. We have tested and refined this methodology over the past three years across more than 40 projects. After making every mistake imaginable, we now know what it takes to implement a data strategy successfully.
D.I.G. stands for:
- Discover: Which metrics and KPIs should you track?
- Implement: Which tools do you need to collect accurate data?
- Grow: Which reports or dashboards do you need to create?
D.I.G. is an iterative process that you can run over and over again. For this guide, we’ll focus on setting up a solid foundation. We’ll also give you some advanced ideas at the end of this post for those who are ready.
Let’s start with Discover: defining the list of metrics and KPIs that you should track.
Discover: Which metrics and KPIs should you track?
Before we start using tools or writing code, we need to know which metrics to track and why we want to track them. This is a business conversation and not a technical one.
One of the most common mistakes that we see companies make is skipping this step and assuming they already know what they want to track. For example, I was on a call recently with a company that was struggling to get basic insights from their web app. They knew high-level numbers like sign-ups but couldn’t dig deeper into their onboarding flow or retention.
On our call, the company told me about all the technical issues they had run into and how their development team didn’t seem to know how to do the most basic things. While that may have been true, I knew that the most pressing issue was that they didn’t know what they wanted to track—they couldn’t translate their business needs into concrete KPIs and metrics.
Instead, they asked for vague information like “track our onboarding performance” or “track user retention.” Most development teams struggle with vague requests, so—for that company and all others—we need to make the KPIs as clear as possible.
The first step is to define our KPIs across the customer journey.
KPIs for the customer journey
The customer journey is the series of steps that a user must take to become a customer. There are different frameworks out there, but we like Pirate Metrics since it aligns quite well with how SaaS products are built and marketed.
Our journey takes places across the following …read more
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