Why do metrics in ChartMogul differ from my billing system software?

You may notice differences between the subscription metrics in your billing system software and ChartMogul due to variations in how each system calculates metrics.

In this article, we explore these differences in-depth and provide resources to help you understand what may be happening with your data behind the scenes.

Read more about how we calculate individual metrics. For a more in depth analysis, export customer and subscription metric data to CSV to compare them with data exported from your billing system software.

Here’s what we cover in this article:

Differences in MRR

MRR reported by your billing system software may differ from what you see in ChartMogul due to differences in how data is handled and processed. Here are the most common reasons:

Time zones

Different time zones can cause MRR reported by ChartMogul and your billing system software to vary. For example, if the time zone in your billing system software is set to Pacific Standard Time (PST) and in ChartMogul it's set to Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST), an invoice issued by your billing system software on one day may be reported as MRR the following day in ChartMogul.

Failed invoices

Some billing system software excludes customers with failed invoices when calculating MRR. ChartMogul includes these when calculating MRR, even if a transaction is marked as failed.

Refunds

Except for Stripe, ChartMogul doesn't include refunds when calculating MRR. When a transaction is refunded, the original transaction amount is still included in the MRR calculation. Read more about configuring refund handling.

One-time payments

One-time payments do not contribute to MRR in ChartMogul (as they are not recurring), however, your billing system software may include one-time payments when calculating MRR. View these payments using the Net Cash Flow chart.

Coupons and discounts

ChartMogul deducts coupons and discounts before calculating MRR.

Taxes

ChartMogul does not include taxes that are specified on invoices when calculating MRR.

Currencies

Invoices issued outside of your account's primary currency are automatically converted using exchange rates. Learn more about how we handle foreign currencies.

Customer status

ChartMogul classifies customers who have at least one active subscription and no past-due subscriptions to be Active. Learn more about customer statuses.

Customers who switch to a free plan or are given a 100% discount are classified as Active using the Free customer handling setting.

When a customer has a past-due payment, ChartMogul assumes good faith and does not classify them as Cancelled until their invoice is closed or their subscription is canceled in your billing system software.

ChartMogul classifies customers with only one-time payments as Leads.

Churn recognition

Your churn recognition setting may differ from how your billing system software treats cancellations, which can lead to differences in MRR calculations. 

Differences in customer counts

The most common reason for a difference in customer counts is the way ChartMogul handles customers who haven't paid. For a customer to be considered active and included in the customer count in ChartMogul, you must have successfully billed them an amount over $0.00. Customers on a free trial or with a 100% discount do not appear as paying customers in ChartMogul.

Customers invoiced outside of a subscription contribute to Non-Recurring Cash Flow and are classified as Leads.

To compare the difference in counts, export a filtered list of customers and compare it with your billing system software.

Differences in customer statuses

ChartMogul has four customer statuses: Lead, Active, Past due, and Cancelled.

Filter your customer list in ChartMogul by Subscription status to see which customers have each status. Or, export customers with a specific status to a CSV file and compare it to data in your billing system software.

Differences in cash flow

ChartMogul calculates Net Cash Flow by adding revenue from subscriptions, one-time, and metered charges, then subtracting refunds. Credit card transaction fees are not deducted. Payments from customers you've manually created do not contribute to Net Cash Flow.

For Gross Cash Flow, ChartMogul includes revenues from subscriptions, one-time, and metered charges. Refunds and credit card transaction fees are not deducted. Payments from customers you've created manually do not contribute to Gross Cash Flow.

Check how your billing system software calculates and presents cash flow. If it handles refunds or credit card fees differently, the cash flow value may be different.

MRR vs. Revenue

MRR and revenue are related, but there are important differences between them:

  • MRR is the sum of all currently active subscriptions normalized (amortized) to a 30.45-day period.
  • Revenue is the sum of all billings successfully paid (cash) or recognized (accrual) in the month, depending on your basis of accounting (cash or accrual).

For example (using cash accounting), if you have 100 customers who you bill $10 per month, your MRR would be the sum of all committed revenue ($1,000). This is what your customers committed to pay, so this is your MRR. If 10 of your customers didn't pay their invoices, your MRR would still be $1,000, but your (cash accounting) revenue for the month would be $900.

MRR may differ from revenue when subscriptions are not billed monthly — often the case for yearly subscriptions.

To calculate MRR, ChartMogul recognizes revenue from an annual subscription over 12 months. For example, when you bill a customer $12 for a yearly subscription, ChartMogul recognizes $1 of MRR each month and reports revenue as $12 in the first month and $0 in the following 11 months.

Lastly, invoice line items types in ChartMogul are either subscription or one-time. A $100 payment can consist of a $20 setup fee (one-time) and a $80 (subscription) payment. In this case, MRR is $80 while revenue is $100.

If your billing system software shows a different MRR, one way of determining what's causing the difference is by identifying a specific customer with a different MRR in ChartMogul. From there, you should be able to see what is driving the difference.

If you feel the MRR in ChartMogul is inaccurate, please contact our support team.

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