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How To Benchmark Your Company's Financial Plans

Benchmarking your company against competitors is essential - it's how your company is graded on performance and can help identify areas of opportunity. We know gathering all the financial data to conduct a benchmarking analysis can be difficult and time-intensive, that's why we've done the groundwork and created a powerful analytics tool to help your company identify where its performance ranks relative to competitors. Before jumping in, open the Public Company Benchmarking Tool in another tab. Next, we'll guide you through the process of determining which classifications your company may fall into.

Selecting Comparable Companies

Category: What is your company in the business of doing? Does your company provide financial technology (fintech), or does it host a platform for buyers and sellers to list their products and services on (marketplace)?

Enterprise Solution: What problem does your company solve? Does your company provide marketing solutions (marketing) or a productivity platform (productivity)?

Enterprise Market: What is the typical size of your customers? Large corporations (enterprise), smaller to medium-sized businesses (SMB), or both (mix)?

Specific Companies: Select specific companies you'd like to include in your benchmark.

Note: Depending on the metrics you're benchmarking, you might want to look at your peers for overall performance, businesses with similar business models for S&M metrics, or businesses with similar products for R&D metrics.

Next, determine what you want to base your benchmark analysis on - revenue stage (how much revenue your company generates), periods from IPO or periods from founding. Fortunately, we provide all three in one simple, easy-to-use interface.

Revenue Stage: It's important to benchmark companies against competitors who generate similar amounts of revenue. In the early stages of a company (when revenue is smaller), margins are sometimes sacrificed for market share. As companies scale, they are expected to maintain their margins and are scrutinized to a higher-degree on their ability to do so.

Periods from IPO: Similar to revenue stage, it's equally important to benchmark a company against competitors in the same lifecycle stage. Typically, there are ranges of acceptable margins for companies that go public. This axis can be extremely useful if your company plans to go public at some point  - it'll allow you to determine those acceptable ranges for a company in your industry at the time of an IPO. Further, it'll allow you to identify the typical trend of margins after an IPO.

Period from Founding: Curious if your company has the right amount of trajectory? This axis will illustrate how fast (or slow) some of the oracles of the industry have taken off since they were founded. Although some metrics (like costs as a % of revenue) are less insightful, its incredibly useful (and interesting) to see how metrics like revenue growth, gross margin and efficiency have trended over time.

Benchmarking Your Financial Plans

Now that you have a dataset of appropriate companies to benchmark your company against, navigate to our Benchmark FAQ Guide to familiarize yourself with the industry standard metrics used in this benchmarking exercise. It's important to understand both the intuition behind these various metrics, as well as the granular numbers that are used in each calculation.

Using the same calculations as described in the Benchmark FAQ Guide, assemble the same metrics for your company's financial plans. Where do your metrics fall relative to competitors? Is your company spending (or planning to spend) more as a percentage of revenue? Or perhaps your sales efficiency metrics are huge outliers? Use this tool to help identify areas of improvement or advantage within your organization. Include these metrics in your board presentation for real-world context!


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Benchmarking your company against competitors is essential - it's how your company is graded on performance and can help identify areas of opportunity. We know gathering all the financial data to conduct a benchmarking analysis can be difficult and time-intensive, that's why we've done the groundwork and created a powerful analytics tool to help your company identify where its performance ranks relative to competitors. Before jumping in, open the Public Company Benchmarking Tool in another tab. Next, we'll guide you through the process of determining which classifications your company may fall into.

Selecting Comparable Companies

Category: What is your company in the business of doing? Does your company provide financial technology (fintech), or does it host a platform for buyers and sellers to list their products and services on (marketplace)?

Enterprise Solution: What problem does your company solve? Does your company provide marketing solutions (marketing) or a productivity platform (productivity)?

Enterprise Market: What is the typical size of your customers? Large corporations (enterprise), smaller to medium-sized businesses (SMB), or both (mix)?

Specific Companies: Select specific companies you'd like to include in your benchmark.

Note: Depending on the metrics you're benchmarking, you might want to look at your peers for overall performance, businesses with similar business models for S&M metrics, or businesses with similar products for R&D metrics.

Next, determine what you want to base your benchmark analysis on - revenue stage (how much revenue your company generates), periods from IPO or periods from founding. Fortunately, we provide all three in one simple, easy-to-use interface.

Revenue Stage: It's important to benchmark companies against competitors who generate similar amounts of revenue. In the early stages of a company (when revenue is smaller), margins are sometimes sacrificed for market share. As companies scale, they are expected to maintain their margins and are scrutinized to a higher-degree on their ability to do so.

Periods from IPO: Similar to revenue stage, it's equally important to benchmark a company against competitors in the same lifecycle stage. Typically, there are ranges of acceptable margins for companies that go public. This axis can be extremely useful if your company plans to go public at some point  - it'll allow you to determine those acceptable ranges for a company in your industry at the time of an IPO. Further, it'll allow you to identify the typical trend of margins after an IPO.

Period from Founding: Curious if your company has the right amount of trajectory? This axis will illustrate how fast (or slow) some of the oracles of the industry have taken off since they were founded. Although some metrics (like costs as a % of revenue) are less insightful, its incredibly useful (and interesting) to see how metrics like revenue growth, gross margin and efficiency have trended over time.

Benchmarking Your Financial Plans

Now that you have a dataset of appropriate companies to benchmark your company against, navigate to our Benchmark FAQ Guide to familiarize yourself with the industry standard metrics used in this benchmarking exercise. It's important to understand both the intuition behind these various metrics, as well as the granular numbers that are used in each calculation.

Using the same calculations as described in the Benchmark FAQ Guide, assemble the same metrics for your company's financial plans. Where do your metrics fall relative to competitors? Is your company spending (or planning to spend) more as a percentage of revenue? Or perhaps your sales efficiency metrics are huge outliers? Use this tool to help identify areas of improvement or advantage within your organization. Include these metrics in your board presentation for real-world context!


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