How to read your reports

If you've just finished activating all of your reports, and now you want to know the next step. Check out the video below and get the most out of your reports.

Just a warning, the video is 11 minutes long, if you don't want to sit through all of it, don't worry. The transcription is below.


Congratulations, you’ve completed setting up your dashboard. You can now start using the product and see how you’re doing and how to improve.

As you can see at the top of the screen there’s a quick view of how you’re doing across each report, with three statuses depending what your score is. A fix status for a low score, an optimise status for an average score and a monitor status for a status for a strong score.
Beneath this is a quick view of your score and comparison for each of the reports. A score in the centre, on the left-hand side a view of your score the last time we refreshed the report, whether that’s gone up or down. On the right-hand side a comparison to the average Handle user. So you can see you have the view for each of the reports on the dashboard screen.

So let’s take a look at the reports. Let’s start with website. Click open.

All the reports are presented in exactly the same format. You’ll start at the top of the screen with the same view that you saw on the main dashboard. Beneath that there are three tabs, which all contain information relating to that report.

  • There’s the report itself which we’ll get through in a second.
  • There’s a tab on why it matters, which we’ll look at in a moment, which explains how your scores been calculated, why it’s important and what to do about it.
  • And there’s a resources section that provides you with tools, articles, products and services that help you deliver some of the improvements we’ve identified.

Beneath the tabs, we give you a quick view of something that you’re doing well within this area and something that you need to focus your attention on.

Directly underneath that, we provide you with a set of three actions that you can carry out to deliver some improvements to your score and to your business as a whole. Within each of these actions, we provide links that give you further information and we give you the opportunity to click and note that you have read and reviewed the action itself.

Underneath here we get into the detail of what’s driving the score.

So in the case of the website we look at the three things we consider to be most important in terms of the performance of your website.

The first thing is, can your customers find you when they search for your business online? We look at how you perform from an SEO perspective across the two main search engines and how you compare to other businesses. So you can see in the case of this particular example they do not have a particularly high SEO score.

When they find you, do your customers trust you? Particularly if you want to take payments online or if you want them to provide you with additional information for marketing purposes. Do they feel confident in doing so? We look at the level of security your website has.

And thirdly when they find you, can they get what they're looking for from your website? Are your image loads speeds, page loads speeds and link speeds all working correctly? If people are frustrated when searching for information they will give up really quickly and you’ll lose potential custom.

Let’s take a look at why it matters.

Why it matters explains how we’ve calculated your score, why it’s important and some of the reasons that are driving a low, medium or high score. It’s supported by video content provided by members of our team. The copy below explains each of the areas I’ve just mentioned. What are you trying to achieve, how is your score calculated and why you should care about it? What the different score bandings mean, fix, optimise and monitor, how you can improve it and then a little bit more of an explanation about each of the variables that we’ve just stepped through, that are driving the score that has been calculated for your business.

Finally, each report provides you with a set of relevant resources.

As I mentioned earlier these are a combination of tools, articles, products and service providers that help you deliver the improvements we’ve identified within the report. As you can see there are things like guides, which you can use to give you a better understanding of how to improve yourself. Third party providers who can go and deliver the work that we’ve identified for you.

Let’s go back to the dashboard and take a look at another report.

We’ll ignore social for a moment and take a look at feedback because that has a lower score and we’ve denoted that with the fix icon. So let’s click and look at feedback.

As you can see it’s the same format as the previous report that we took a look at. Scores, positive and negative and a set of actions relating to the report.

Let’s try and understand why the feedback score is so low. In this particular instance, whilst the business user has a Trustpilot account, it currently doesn’t have any reviews whatsoever. What this means is a customer will be able to find them through Trustpilot, but when they've found them, they would see that there aren’t any reviews. Therefore they wouldn’t be able to get any confidence through customer sentiment of how that business was doing in terms of its delivery of goods and services. As a result, the scores below are blank.
However had the business had some reviews, what you would see in here are two variables that we think explain how well a business is doing from a customer sentiment perspective.

  1. Firstly confidence, and this is derived from the score itself. How recently the reviews have been provided and the time between individual reviews. It's great to have 5-star reviews, but if nobody has reviewed your business for the last five years, the relevance of those reviews is pretty low. So it’s important not only to have a good score but also for those reviews to have come in recently and the interval between them to be relatively short.
  2. The second thing we do is look at how you, respond to reviews. This is a combination of responses to positive reviews because it’s really important to reinforce the positive messages and positive feedback that your customers give you. And negative reviews, it’s really important that you respond to negative reviews, try and understand and resolve the issue that the customer has identified.

Let’s go back to the dashboard and have a look at another report.

Let’s take a look at the finance report next, as that also have a fix icon on the dashboard. Let’s try and understand what’s driving that.

It's the same report structure as before. The finance report is based on a couple of things, profitability and cash flow rating from your statuary account submissions and how up to date you are with your filing.

You can see the reason this particular customer has a low score, is because they are out of date when it comes to the filing of their accounts.

We also play back to you fixed assets and liabilities. And again you can see we compare the scores on the variables that are driving the main score with other Handle users.

Back to the dashboard.

Let’s go back and take a look at what’s going on with the social score.

So the social score is comprised of three main variables. At the top, before we step through, we also provide you with a quick summary view of how you’re doing across each of the platforms you’ve integrated into the product.
From a Twitter perspective, how many followers you have, how many people you’re following, from a Facebook perspective how many likes your business page has. Once again we compare those to the average Handle user.

Now the variables below that are driving the score are; the strength of your networks, so how far do your primary and secondary networks allow you to reach, when it comes to customers and potential customers that you could speak to through your social media updates.

How often are you updating? So how often are you communicating with that audience, telling them things about your business, what’s going on, offers, content?

And finally when you do update that audience how are they engaging with it. How often are they liking the things that you say and sharing the content that you provide? And again we compare each of those to other Handle users.

Let’s step back to the dashboard and have a look at the last report.

The final report to take a look at is credit, so let’s click in through the dashboard.

Once again we provide you with some key statistics, so in the case of credit, we look at your overall credit rating. And then your identification strength so how easy it is for third parties to validate your business. And then we provide you with a useful block of data, that looks at some of the key variables that will dictate:

  1. How a lender would react to an application for finance from you, and then
  2. How people will generate credit terms when you make payment on account. So we look at things like CCJ’s and insolvency at the top.
  3. The amount of debt you’re carrying and across how many credit agreements.
  4. Then importantly, for the number of businesses that are buying items on payment terms and using those payment terms to manage cash flow.
  5. How much credit and how many days credit does the credit bureau suggest to those suppliers, that they should offer to you.
  6. And again we provide comparison here to other users of the product.

As I mentioned, at the top, each of the reports has the report itself, with the variables, the actions and some information about what’s good and what’s bad on your score. It also has the why it matters tab and it has a set of relevant resources relating to that report.

If you want to you can access those resources through the menu by clicking the icon above.

Click the resources section and you’re presented with a long list of resources that you can filter through, that cover each of the reports. These will help you deliver the improvements that we’ve identified in each of those reports.

That’s a quick whistle stop tour of how the product works. How to sign up, set up and use the product when you have all the information populated.

We’re always really keen to hear back from our customers and get as much feedback as possible. And obviously, if you have any queries or any issues you can always use the need help icon. It's present all the way through the product at the top, or you can email us at [email protected], we’d love to hear from you. Thanks for your time.

For more information about account and report set-up, click the links below:

  1. Introduction to FSB Business Profiling
  2. How to Sign-up
  3. Website Report Set-Up
  4. Social Report Set-Up
  5. Credit and Finance Set-Up
  6. Feedback Report Set-Up