If You Want To Grow, Measure.

Sara Kappler
7 min readFeb 4


If you’re a business owner, you hear about metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs) all the time. Metrics are what we measure in our business. And KPIs are numbers we track over time that tell us about the health of our business. Each helps us be more profitable, productive, and successfully grow our business.

In finance, you might be using an accounting tool like Quickbooks and tracking every invoice and expense. Your KPIs could be revenue and profit, for example. In e-commerce, you’re likely studying conversion rates (how many website visitors became customers?) and seeking to grow your loyal customer base.

There’s one metric we believe every business, regardless of industry, ought to be measuring, if they want to grow. It’s how your customers first learned of your business, your product, or your services. Whether you’re a team of one with an excel spreadsheet, an eCommerce business using Klaviyo, or a B2B Business using a free tool like Hubspot, there’s a simple question to start asking customers.

How Did You Hear About Us?

We’ve all filled out an online form for a product or service that asks, usually toward the end of a form, “How did you hear about us?”. It’s typically coupled with a drop-down list of options to select: Online search. Facebook. Radio Advertisement. A Friend. An Employee. Other.

This is a simple technique used to capture some key information about where leads and interest in your product or services are coming from.

In marketing lingo, we call this your customers’ referral source.

What Tracking Referral Sources Tells You.

Simply put, tracking referral sources will tell you where your potential customers or leads and later on customers — are coming from. How did they hear about you?

Anyone who is a potential customer that’s considering purchasing from your business came from somewhere and you can learn a lot from keeping tracking of that information.

Once you start tracking referral source, you can start to see:

  • which events, activities, or even networking groups are generating leads (and which ones are worthwhile)
  • which marketing activities…



Sara Kappler

I run a small marketing agency focused on CRM-Driven growth. Seattle-based, mom of three, data & email marketing enthusiast! https://centricsquared.com