How we increased our revenues by 23% with just a Python script

It’s no secret these past few years that with all the brand new ideas that go hand in hand with the amazing progress in information technology, the market is swamped in start-up companies.
More and more people decide to take a risk and start a small company of their own, with the potential to grow it into the next-big-thing.  
Great idea + solid technology to rely on + hard work = success, right? Unfortunately it is not that simple. You also have to overcome the competition. Considering that today’s competition is partly defined by how much attention you receive on social media, that means you have to stand out.

So how do you go about doing that? Studies have shown that it’s not just about adding more features. It’s about knowing what to measure, and analysing the results in order to use  them to your advantage.

First things first: choose wisely. Metrics are only useful if they address important questions, if they monitor key activities. Following Dave McClure’ s guidelines, as shown in his amazing presentation on pirate metrics, is a safe way to start. No matter what kind of product you are selling, what service you are providing, how big or small your company is, there are 5 key metrics you should focus on:

Every one of these steps is hugely important, since, as we all know, it’s a long way to the top. Here are some scary facts to remind you of that:

  • only 2% out of all the users that will visit your site, will come back more than 3 times
  • only 1% will bring you significant profit
  • only 1% will refer you to a friend who will also activate an account

The best way to make sure that you achieve the best possible results is by ALWAYS focusing on your goals. Understand how the customers’ lifecycle works, make sure that they are happy with the product and make MANY landing page and A/B tests. Imagine your company is like a toolbox, you have to know how to use all your tools as efficiently as possible.

Which brings us to analysing your results. Google Analytics is a great tool you can use for this purpose and it’s fairly simple to set up, as long as you know which metrics you want to use. Just follow the instructions of the tutorial on how to create a new report.

Bugsense has already been there, done that, and went one step further. We created a “Pyanalytics” tool, as we like to call it, that processes the results we get from GA concerning our website usage, and hands the gist to us in a neat, simple, HTML report.

Even though this information was available from Google Analytics, nailing it down to a simple table helped us increase our revenues by 23%. We were experimenting with different UIs in our pricing page. and we saw that  page A were getting us more users (but less aware users about the pricing) but page B was getting us more conversions (more paying users).

Page A:

Page B:

For those of you who are interested, check our current page. It has the best of the two worlds.

Being lovers of OpenSource, we are happy to share it and save you some trouble! Nag me on twitter and I’ll cleanup the code and share it! 

- Jon