10 key performance indicators (KPIs) for owner-managed businesses

10 key performance indicators (KPIs) for owner-managed businessesOwner-managed businesses have a need to closely track performance and profitability. Having measurable key performance indicators (KPIs) in place allows business owners to gauge the health and growth of their company. The following 10 KPIs are specifically relevant for small and mid-sized owner-managed businesses across various industries.

Revenue Growth

A core KPI is year-over-year revenue growth. Comparing monthly and annual sales levels to the previous year provides insight if revenues are expanding at an acceptable pace to meet growth targets. Most businesses aim for reliable revenue growth month-to-month and year-over-year.

Gross Profit Margin

Analysing gross profit margins over time determines if adequate mark-up is being achieved on products or services sold. Gross margin is sales revenue less cost of goods sold. Monitoring gross margins allows owners to assess if pricing and production costs are optimised.

Customer Acquisition Cost

Understanding how much is costs to acquire a new customer is a vital number for owners to track. By dividing total sales and marketing expenses by the number of new customers signed on in a particular month or year, owners can see if customer acquisition costs are rising or declining over time.

Customer Lifetime Value

Projecting customer lifetime value allows owners to evaluate long-term profitability of their client base. Factors like average order value, purchase frequency, and customer tenure feed into this lifetime value forecast.

Net Promoter Score

Net Promoter Score measures customer loyalty by assessing how likely customers are to recommend products or services to others. Tracking Net Promoter Scores gives insight if customer satisfaction is improving or declining. It requires ongoing customer surveys.

Employee Turnover Rate

The rate at which employees voluntarily exit provides owners clear data whether their staff are engaged or dissatisfied. Reviewing exit interviews and turnover metrics allows owners to identify areas of improvement to build an enduring employee team.

Website Traffic

While more generalised traffic metrics like Google Analytics provide broader website traffic data, conversion rates of visitors to leads and customers is highly revealing. Monitoring online conversions measures the effectiveness of digital marketing efforts in generating sales.

Inventory Turnover Rate

For product-based businesses, inventory turnover rate is an important operational KPI. Calculating the number of times average inventory sells in a year helps set optimally lean stock levels to avoid excess inventory carrying costs.

Accounts Receivable Days

Tracking the average number of days for client invoices to be paid is crucial for cash flow management. Too high accounts receivable days can indicate problems collecting from customers in a timely fashion.

Operating Expenses & Profit

While the above KPIs track specific areas of business performance, overall operating profitability matters most. Owners should monitor operating expenses as a percentage of revenues to ensure costs are not rising disproportionately. Ultimately driving towards consistent operating profit month-to-month is a key high-level KPI.


Diligently tracking these 10 owner-managed business KPIs provides data-driven insight into sales growth, customer metrics, employee retention, inventory efficiency, cash flow, and profitability. Setting performance goals and benchmarking against historical averages for these metrics allows owners to guide their enterprises towards sustained success.

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Disclaimer. This article has been prepared for information purposes only. Formal professional advice is strongly recommended before making decisions on the topics discussed in this release. No responsibility for any loss to any person acting, or not acting, as a result of this release can be accepted by us, or any person affiliated with us.

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