Chapter 20. Model + Stage Drives the Metric You Track

The core idea behind Lean Analytics is this: by knowing the kind of business you are, and the stage you’re at, you can track and optimize the One Metric That Matters to your startup right now. By repeating this process, you’ll overcome many of the risks inherent in early-stage companies or projects, avoid premature growth, and build atop a solid foundation of true needs, well-defined solutions, and satisfied customers.

Figure 20-1 shows these Lean Analytics stages, along with the “gates” you need to clear to move to the next phase and some of the metrics that will indicate when you’re ready to move forward.

Now that you know your business model and your current stage, you’re in a good position to pick a few metrics that will help you make it to the next stage of growth. Table 20-1 gives you some examples of what things matter to a particular model as it grows.

Once you’ve identified the metrics you should worry about, your next question is clear: what should I be trying for, and what’s normal?

We decided to find out.

Where are you today? What will it take to move forward?
Figure 20-1. Where are you today? What will it take to move forward?
Table 20-1. What metrics matters depending on your business model and stage

Business model

Company stage


Two-sided marketplace

Software as a Service

Free mobile app


User-generated content

The really big question

Will they buy enough for enough money ...

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