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The Guide to Revenue Drivers

The Guide to Revenue Drivers

Revenue drivers are like the gears in a money-making machine for a company. They are the things the company does, makes, and sells to earn money. To see how well these money-making parts are working, businesses use numbers like sales, how much of the market they have, how many people they can turn into customers, and how fast they're growing.

Businesses can figure out which parts of their money-making machine are doing well and which need some fixing by looking at these numbers. They also need to examine the things that cost them more money in order to understand how much they are making.

So, in simple terms, revenue drivers are the things that help a business make money. They're like the building blocks of a money plan for a company.

Understanding Your Revenue Drivers

In business, when we talk about "growth," we usually think about things like money, stuff a company owns, profits, and what it owes. These are important for making a business bigger. But there's something even more important that doesn't show up on those financial papers: things a company has or does that help it make money but don't get written down.

For example, if an online store has lots of customers who keep coming back and have good relationships with the companies that supply its products, those things make the company more money, but you won't see them in the financial records.

So, to sum it up, the things that help a business make money include what's written down in the financial records (like money, stuff, profits, and debts) and the things that aren't (like loyal customers, good suppliers, and the unique things about the industry it's in).

On-Balance Sheet Revenue Drivers

  • Cash

Companies, just like people, have money in their bank accounts. When a company uses this money to buy things that make even more money, we call this money a "revenue driver."

Cash becomes a revenue driver when it helps buy things that make more cash. In a way, it's the main goal of making more money. Think of cash as a tool for growth, and it's the king of making money.

  • Assets

Assets are like tools that help make money. Some assets, like stuff that can be easily turned into cash (like things you can sell quickly), and big things like land and machines, help a lot in making money.

Assets come in two types: things you buy and sell for profit (like a house you hope will get more valuable), and things that directly make money for you. Most things in our personal lives are the first type.

In a business, assets can either help make things to sell and get money, or they can be sold themselves to get money. Cash can also help make more money. Also, big assets can make money and be sold for profit.

  • Profits

When a company makes money, it can use that money to make even more money. This happens when they put that money back into the company. Now, let's talk about the difference between two things: cash and profit. Cash is the actual money a company has, like the money in your wallet. Profit is like the money a company has earned, but it might not be in their wallet yet.

Some people think that profit is the money a company has left after paying all its bills for a year. But in reality, profit doesn't instantly become cash. Instead, it's often used as needed throughout the year. This is called accounts receivable and reinvestment. So, think of profit like a plant that needs time to grow and be useful.

  • Liabilities (but not equity)

Liabilities can help us make money by allowing us to buy things that make money for us. For example, a loan gives us money to buy things like inventory or machines that help us make products and earn money. Accounts payable is another type of liability. It's like money we owe for things we already have. We'll have to pay it eventually, but for now, we can use our money for something else.

However, liabilities are not the best way to make money because they add extra stress to our money management. But sometimes, they are important for businesses that don't have enough money from their regular operations.

There are still several types of revenue drivers that can impact a business's financial performance. Here are some common ones:

  • Sales Volume: The total number of units or services sold.

  • Pricing: The cost at which products or services are sold.

  • Market Share: The portion of the total market that a business captures.

  • Customer Acquisition: The number of new customers acquired within a given period.

  • Customer Retention: The ability to retain existing customers and generate repeat business.

  • Upselling and Cross-selling: Encouraging customers to purchase additional or related products.

  • Product Mix: The variety and range of products or services offered.

  • Geographic Expansion: Expanding into new markets or regions.

  • Partnerships and Alliances: Collaborating with other companies to expand customer reach.

  • Marketing and Advertising: Investing in promotional activities to drive sales.

FP&A (Financial Planning and Analysis) software plays a crucial role in identifying the best-performing revenue drivers and trends within a business. It empowers businesses to identify the most impactful revenue drivers, analyze trends, and take proactive action to maximize revenue growth and profitability.

Below, you'll find a selection of FP&A software options tailored to your company's specific revenue needs and desired reports, along with explanations of their respective benefits:

Data Analysis

For this, FP&A software that collects and analyzes large volumes of financial and operational data is needed. Cube is the most convenient software for this type of report. It is known for its robust data analysis capabilities, providing businesses with advanced analytics and insights into revenue drivers. It offers intuitive reporting and visualization features to monitor performance effectively.

Reporting and Visualization

If you need software that generates reports and visualizations that provide insights into revenue drivers, Anaplan is a versatile FP&A software that excels in forecasting and budgeting. It enables businesses to create accurate revenue forecasts by leveraging historical data and market trends.

Forecasting and Budgeting

For FP&A software allows businesses to create accurate revenue forecasts and budgets based on historical data and market trends, Vena Solutions is recognized for its strong reporting and visualization features. It provides interactive dashboards and reports that offer comprehensive insights into revenue drivers.

Scenario Planning

By simulating different scenarios, businesses can use Planful which offers powerful scenario planning capabilities, allowing businesses to assess the impact of different revenue driver changes. It helps in making informed decisions and optimizing performance accordingly.

Trend Analysis

The FP&A software that best supports trend analysis is Prophix. It tracks revenue driver performance over time and identifies patterns and trends to guide decision-making.

Collaboration and Communication

If you need FP&A software facilitate partnership between different teams within an organization, Workday Adaptive Planning is a popular choice for collaboration and communication. It facilitates seamless collaboration between teams to share insights and align efforts to optimize revenue drivers.


Revenue drivers are the essential components that power a company's financial success, serving as the gears in the money-making machine. These drivers encompass various aspects such as sales, market share, customer relationships, and operational efficiency. To truly grasp and utilize the potential of these revenue drivers, businesses rely on financial tools and software. These tools enable organizations to effectively analyze, report, and visualize their revenue drivers. By utilizing these FP&A tools, businesses can unlock valuable insights, make informed decisions, and optimize their revenue drivers, ultimately driving their financial growth and success.

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