How to lower your Customer Acquisition Costs (CAC)


Javier Iglesias

Mar 07, 2023

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Although I am sure you already know, CAC stands for customer acquisition cost. Note: It is also referred to as CPA (Cost Per Acquisition).

In other words, it serves as the benchmark for acquiring clients for all founders, investors, and consequently, marketing and sales directors.

Whatever you do, the CAC is the negotiating tool for a compliment or a stern gesture in the day-to-day operations of marketing. Similar to how TV shows are rated by their viewers.

Why is CAC so crucial to the marketing strategy?

The CAC is one of the main indicators used to measure the success of a marketing plan.

It is the primary indicator of a startup's growth. Therefore, customer acquisition cost (CAC) is an important metric for any company that wants to grow and maintain its customer base.

It represents the total cost of acquiring a new customer, including all costs associated with sales, marketing, and advertising.

In this article, you will discover what CAC is, how it is calculated, and some strategies to reduce the cost of customer acquisition. Let’s go!

What is the customer acquisition cost (CAC)?

As mentioned in the intro, Customer acquisition cost (CAC) is the total cost of acquiring a new customer.

It includes all costs associated with a company's efforts to attract, convert, and retain customers. It includes marketing, advertising, sales, and customer service expenses.

CAC can be expressed as a percentage of total sales, as a fixed amount, or as a cost per acquisition (CPA). Also, it can be presented as a ratio of the number of customers acquired over a given period of time.

The CAC ratio's consistency and uniformity across all departments is crucial, it's nothing new.

How is there a difference?

As I said, it is very common to come up with various definitions for the same term to move forward. What eventually happens is that months pass until everyone puts their hands on their heads or around each other's necks to discuss who is doing it right rather than actually doing it right.

The CAC index is used to evaluate a business's success in acquiring new clients. The index must therefore be calculated equally by each member of your startup.

It is calculated by taking the total cost of customer acquisition (CAC) and dividing it by the overall number of customers acquired.

The lower the CAC ratio, the more effective your acquisition efforts will be because that means less money must be put towards acquiring customers.

What is the CAC index?

The CAC is merely a monetary metric that expresses the company's average cost per new customer.

The lower the CAC ratio, the more effective your acquisition efforts will be.

It is calculated by dividing the total cost of customer acquisition (CAC) by the total number of customers acquired during a given period.

The CAC index is important because it helps companies identify how to optimize their acquisition efforts to make them more efficient and profitable. Additionally, it demonstrates how to maximize acquisition strategies for businesses to boost productivity and profitability. This holds especially true when the CEO, marketing, and sales departments of the same company, as well as investors, use the same terms.

Factors influencing the CAC index.

The CAC index is affected by several factors, such as the cost of marketing and advertising campaigns, the conversion rate of leads to customers, the cost of sales and customer service expenses, and the customer retention rate.

The cost of marketing and advertising campaigns will have a direct impact on the CAC ratio. The higher the cost, the higher the CAC ratio.

The conversion rate of leads into customers will also have an effect. The CAC ratio will increase if leads do not become customers.

Working with Gretel ensures that notifications, not alarms, will be sounded in order to prevent a hecatomb (fancy word for crisis or massive sacrifice).

It's also important to consider the price of sales and customer support costs. The CAC rate will increase if these costs are out of line.

Finally, it is important to consider the retention rate. The CAC ratio will be higher if customers are not retained.

It's also important to consider the price of sales and customer support costs. The CAC rate will increase if these costs are out of line.

But do you not consider customer retention when creating a digital marketing strategy? Think about the following before extracting your CAC index:

  • The cost of performance campaigns is only one more point of the CAC.
  • The cost of the entire marketing department must be included in the CAC.
  • The cost of customer service and sales should also go into the CAC index.

Strategies to reduce the cost of customer acquisition.

The cost of customer acquisition can be reduced by focusing on the factors that influence the CAC ratio.

Here are some strategies to help reduce the cost of customer acquisition:

  • Optimize marketing and advertising campaigns. Using targeted campaigns, focusing on the right channels, and testing different messages can help reduce the cost of customer acquisition.
  • Improve lead conversion rate. Using automated lead nurturing tools such as Salesmate, Nutshell, or Hubspot, analyzing customer data, and optimizing the sales process can help increase the lead conversion rate.
  • Optimize sales channels. There is no performance campaign worth its salt, or conversion rate to be achieved if the channels are not optimized according to criteria such as mobile speed, user experience, or purchase intent.
  • Reduce sales and customer service costs. Automating sales and customer service processes, streamlining processes, and improving the customer experience can help reduce costs.
  • Increase customer retention rate. Improving the ongoing customer experience, providing value, and offering incentives can help increase customer retention.

Benefits of reducing customer acquisition costs.

Reducing the cost of customer acquisition can have a number of advantages for a company.

First, it can improve profitability by increasing the return on investment (ROI) of marketing and advertising campaigns.

Second, it can help increase customer lifetime value (LTV) by reducing churn.

Also, it can help performance investment by working directly with the conversion-focused performance side of the business.

Finally, it can help improve the customer experience by reducing customer service costs.

Best practices to optimize your CAC ratio.

Here are some best practices to optimize your CAC ratio:

  • Track and measure the cost of customer acquisition: Tracking and measuring the cost of customer acquisition can help identify areas for improvement and benchmark against industry standards.
  • Use customer segmentation: Using customer segmentation can help identify customer segments that have a lower cost of acquisition.
  • Focus on high-value customers: Focusing on high-value customers that have influencing power and determine the profitability of your company, can help reduce the cost of customer acquisition.
  • Optimize the customer onboarding process: Optimizing the customer onboarding process can help reduce customer acquisition costs and churn of customers.
  • Leverage customer data: Leveraging customer data can help identify customer segments with lower acquisition costs and further optimize the customer experience.

Common challenges and pitfalls of reducing acquisition costs.

Reducing customer acquisition costs can be a difficult and time-consuming process. Here are some of the most common challenges and pitfalls to consider in order to reduce the possibility of having higher customer acquisition costs:

  • Low customer conversion rate
  • Low customer retention rate
  • Lack of customer segmentation
  • Poorly optimized customer onboarding process
  • Poorly optimized customer experience

Working the entire marketing department under the same development criteria is critical to avoiding these situations.

Therefore, relying on a marketing framework helps establish the same guidelines and consequently reduces CAC, since the entire marketing department will work with the same marketing strategy.


Reducing customer acquisition costs is an important part of any company's growth strategy.

It can help increase profitability, customer lifetime value, and customer experience.

To reduce the cost of customer acquisition, it is essential to optimize marketing and advertising campaigns, improve lead conversion rates, reduce sales and customer service costs, and increase customer retention rates. It is very much a group effort that requires an all-hands-on-deck approach.

It is also essential to track the CAC, and with tools such as Gretel, you will be able to achieve this and optimize the measurement of the cost of customer acquisition by identifying areas for improvement and comparing them with industry standards.

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