Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Tracking Monthly Recurring Revenue from Stripe

One of the key metrics for a subscription based business is Monthly Recurring Revenue (abbreviated as MRR).  For businesses using Stripe for payment processing, this metric is not reported directly by the Stripe dashboard, so tools such as Baremetrics are popular for tracking metrics such as MRR.  However, this doesn't help address the challenge of siloed data that's hard to integrate with your other key business metrics.

Just the Facts now supports tracking MRR and another key metric, Average Revenue Per User (ARPU) from Stripe.  This post will step through the subscription process.

Once you have logged into the Just the Facts and downloaded the Chrome browser extension, login to your Stripe account and navigate to your Stripe Dashboard.  You can then click the Just the Facts extension ( ) in your browser toolbar to activate it.

You will be presented with a dialog to select the facts to subscribe to:
Subscribe to Sripe Metrics
(This example shows the Stripe Test Dashboard, but you should be sure to subscribe to your Live Dashboard).

Select the "Monthly Recurring Revenue" and "Average Revenue Per User" checkboxes and click "Subscribe".  You will now be prompted to enter your Stripe API key.
Enter Stripe API Key
To find this key value, click the "Where is this?" link and you'll be taken to your list of API keys.  You'll want to enter the value for the "Live Secret Key".

Your Stripe metrics will now be added to your Just the Facts dashboard and will be updated every day by default:
ARPU and MMR metrics
You can also choose to be alerted on these metrics.  For example, if you click the "Set Warnings" icon on ARPU:
Set a Warming
you can then select the "Increase" radio button and enter "20" into the percent field.  This will generate an email alert if the ARPU ever decreases by more than 20%.
Warn if ARPU Decreases by > 20%
You may also wish track this value on a weekly rather than daily basis, since it is unlikely to change that significantly from day to day.  You can do this by clicking the "Details" tab, changing the "Refresh Frequency" to "Weekly", then clicking the "Save" button.
Changing the Subscription Frequency
By default, the Stripe metrics will also be included in your daily email report:
Daily Email Report



Friday, October 3, 2014

Tracking Metrics from Facebook Page Insights

Facebook provides a Page Insights dashboard to help page owners analyze the activity and user engagement of their page posts.

While the dashboard is great for a visual overview of your page performance, many of the most actionable metrics are not directly exposed, and there's no easy way to track performance over time and set targets and alerts.

Just the Facts now supports several Page Insights metrics to help you easily track these engagement metrics.

To subscribe to these metrics, you begin by logging into Facebook and navigating to the Insights page from the navigation bar:
Facebook Insights Menu Item
In the "Page Insights" section, choose the Page you wish to subscribe to:
Selecting a Page
(Just the Facts also supports subscribing to your App Insights; we'll cover this in a separate posting.)

Once you're on the page, activate the Just the Facts extension from the browser toolbar ( ) and you will be prompted for the facts to subscribe to:

Subscribe to Facebook Insights
After providing permissions, you will be brought to your Just the Facts dashboard, where you can set targets and alerts by clicking the "Set Warnings" icon for any of your facts:
Set Warnings For a Fact
The following is a brief overview of the supported metrics and their definition:

  • Total Reach - The number of unique people who viewed any content from your page.
  • Post Reach - The number of unique people who viewed your page posts.
  • Engaged Users - The number of people who engaged in any way with your page, including liking, commenting, sharing, or clicking on posts.
  • Impressions - The total number of times content from your page was displayed.
  • Consumptions - The total number of clicks on your page posts.
  • Consumers - The number of unique people who clicked on your page posts.
  • Engagement Rate - The percentage of people who engaged with your content after viewing it (Engaged Users / Post Reach)
For more detail and discussion of these metrics and their significance, we recommend this Glossary of Terms or the Simply Measured Facebook Analytics Guide.


Are there other metrics you find useful for tracking purposes?  Leave a comment below!

Monday, September 1, 2014

Tracking Week Over Week Active User Growth

One of the most frequently tracked metrics for consumer sites and apps is week-over-week growth in active users.  Just the Facts makes it easy to directly track and monitor this metric.

We begin with Google Analytics and its "Users" metric on the Audience Overview screen.  Since we want to track the number of user over an entire week, select the date dropdown in the upper right corner and choose a date range of "Last 7 days":

Google Analytics Date Picker
Then activate the Just the Facts extension () in the browser toolbar, select the Users metric:

Subscribe to Google Analytics
and provide permissions so that Just the Facts can invoke the Google Analytics API:

Permissions Dialog
At this point, there are two possible monitoring approaches  The most basic approach is to monitor this fact's change at the beginning of every week.  Modify the subscription frequency from its default value of daily by clicking the settings icon next to the newly created fact:

Edit Fact Settings
then select the Refresh Frequency dropdown in the resulting dialog:

Edit Fact Settings Dialog
Just the Facts sends out a daily metric report by default.  Now, every Monday that report will include a Users metric that instantly shows us how the absolute and percentage change in the value from the previous week:

Week Over Week Change in Active Users
Now, it would be even more useful to be able to set targets for this metric and to be alerted to problems like when it decreases.  We'll accomplish this using a Combined Fact on which we can direct set targets and alerts.

First, go back to the "Users" fact and set the Refresh Frequency back to daily in the "Edit Settings" dialog.  Next, select the "Users" fact on the dashboard  by clicking its check box, then click the "Combine Into New Fact" icon:
Combine Icon
In the resulting dialog, choose the "Week over week growth" radio button, name the new fact "Active User Weekly Growth", and click "Save":
Weekly Growth Combined Fact
Finally, once the Fact is created, select it once again and click the "Set Warnings" icon:

Set Warnings
From this screen you can both set a target of 10% week-over-week growth and set a warning if the value decreases rather than increases:
Set Target and Warning
Depending on how often you want to track this value, you can also click over to the 'Details" tab and adjust the Refresh Frequency just as you did with the base fact.

A week later, when you view your dashboard you will see the first calculated value for active user weekly growth, as well as whether it is meeting the target:

Growth Is On Target










Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Creating Burn Down Charts for Pivotal Tracker

This post will step through the process of using Just the Facts to subscribe to Pivotal Tracker project metrics and to graph those metrics in a burn down chart.

While Pivotal does have built-in charting capabilities, these canned charts have some limitations; for example, you can only chart a Burn Down for a single Release.

Begin by navigating to your Pivotal project page showing your list of current stories:
Viewing a Pivotal Project
Click the Just the Facts browser extension () in the browser toolbar to activate it.  You will be presented with a dialog to choose the facts you want to track for this project.
Subscribe to Pivotal Tracker Facts
In this case, we'll choose "Accepted and Total Points."  We'll also select "Unstarted Points" and "Started Points."   This will give us the basic information we'll need for a burndown chart.

After clicking "Subscribe,"  you'll be prompted to provide your API token.  This token allows Just the Facts to make secure calls to the Pivotal Tracker APIs on your behalf.
Provide Pivotal Tracker API Token
You can click the "Where is this?" link to view your settings page containing your token:
Pivotal Tracker Profile Page
Scroll down to reach the "API Token" section, copy the token value and paste it into the field on Just the Facts, then click "Subscribe to Pivotal Tracker".

This will create your fact subscriptions and display their current values:
Pivotal Tracker Fact Subscriptions
We now have all the raw facts we need.  However, for purposes of our burndown we actually want to chart the total count of unfinished story points, which is actually the sum of two of the facts - both the started and unstarted stories.

We will create a new, calculated fact for this story count.  Begin by selecting the "Started Story Points" and "Unstarted Story Points" facts, then clicking the Combine () button:
Creating a Combined Fact
 Since we are summing these two facts, we'll leave the dropdown with its default "Add to" value selected.  We'll name the new fact "Unfinished Story Points" and click the "Save" button to create it.
Naming a Combined Fact
We can then view our newly created fact in our dashboard:
Newly Created Combined Fact
There is actually one more calculated fact we'll need:  a count of the Finished Story Points, which we can obtain by subtracting the Unfinished Points we just created from the Total Points.

Begin by selecting "Total Story Points" and "Unfinished Story Points" and clicking Combine again:
Creating Another Combined Fact
This time, select the "Subtract" item from the drop down and name the new fact "Finished Story Points":
Combined Fact Using Subtraction
And now we can see both our newly created combined facts:
Both Combined Facts
As a side note, over time your dashboard will become more crowded with facts from multiple sources, combined facts, and so forth.  This is when the Filter drop down comes in; you can use it to filter the visible facts on a variety of dimensions, including not only the source of the fact but also metadata such as the project name:
The Filter Dropdown
There's one additional data point we'd like to include in our graph; a trendline of progress that shows when we are likely to be completed.  We create a trendline like any other Combined Fact.  First, we'll select the base fact, which in this case is the "Unfinished Story Points" count that we want to trend.  We'll then click the "Combine" button again:
Creating a Projected Fact
We'll choose the "Projection" radio button to indicate that we will project future values based on the present values.  We'll name this combined fact "Projected Remaining Story Points" then click "Save".
Naming a Projected Fact
Now we're ready to choose the facts we want to chart in our burn down.  The remaining screen shots will show several days worth of collected data to make it clearer exactly how our story point counts have changed over time.
We'll choose the facts to chart and click the Chart () button:

Selecting Cats to Chart
This will display a line graph with the past week's values for all four selected facts:
 Default Graph
We can then click the "Save" button to give the chart a title and easily view it any time in the future:
Title for New Chart
The chart will be created with default colors and appearance for each of its facts.  We can click on the Edit button ( ) to bring up a dialog to modify the chart details:

Edit Chart Details
In this case, we will assign specific colors, stack the finished and unfinished story counts one on top of the other, and display values for the unfinished story points, giving us a final chart that looks like this:
Formatted Burndown Chart
Note that the trendline automatically extends out to the future.  This allows us to use the date picker labeled "End Date" to go out in time another two weeks to see the projected completion date for the current stories:
Projected Burndown

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Creating Burn Down Charts for Asana

This post will step through the process of using Just the Facts to subscribe to Asana task counts and graphing them in a burn down chart.

Begin by navigating to one of your Asana projects.  In the screens below, we will be working with the built-in "My Tasks" project, but the same approach applies to any project.

Viewing an Asana Project
Click the Just the Facts browser extension ( ) in the toolbar to activate it.  You will be taken to a new screen where you can choose the facts you want for this project.

Subscribe to Asana Facts
You will be prompted to provide permissions for Just the Facts to access your Asana information.  After providing this permission, your fact subscriptions will be created.

Asana Fact Subscriptions
There's one additional data point we'd like to include in our graph:  a trendline of progress that shows when we are likely to be completed.  We create a trendline like any other Combined Fact.  First, we'll select the base fact, which in this case is the "Remaining Tasks" count that we want to trend.  We'll then click the "Combine" (button:
Creating a Combined Fact
We'll choose the "Projection" radio button to indicate that we will project future values based on the present values.  We'll name this combined fact "Projected Remaining Tasks" then click "Save."

Creating a Projected Fact
Now we can choose the facts we want to chart and click the Chart () button:

Selecting Facts to Chart
This will display a line graph with the last week's values for all four selected facts:

Default Burndown Appearance

We can then click the "Save" button to give the chart a title and easily view it any time in the future:

New Chart Dialog

The chart will be created with default colors and behavior for each of its facts.  We can click the Edit () button to bring up a dialog to modify the chart details:

Edit Chart Dialog

In this case we will assign specific colors, stack the completed and remaining task counts one on top of the other, and display values for the remaining task count, giving us a final chart that looks like this:

Formatted Burndown Chart
Note that the trendline automatically extends to the future.  This allows us to use the date picker labeled "End Date" to go out in time another two weeks to see the projected completion date for the project:

Projected Burndown