January 03, 2023

What is Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)?

What is Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)?
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Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) is the total cost that a company incurs in acquiring a new customer. It is a key metric for businesses looking to understand the efficiency of their marketing and sales efforts.

Why is CAC Important?

CAC is an important metric because it helps companies understand the cost of acquiring new customers. It allows businesses to track the effectiveness of their marketing campaigns and identify opportunities for improvement.

For example, if a company's CAC is high, it may indicate that it is not effectively targeting its marketing efforts or that its sales process is inefficient. In this case, the company may need to reevaluate its marketing strategy or streamline its sales process to lower CAC. On the other hand, if a company's CAC is low, it may be a sign that it is effectively targeting its marketing efforts and has an efficient sales process.

How is CAC Calculated?

CAC is calculated by dividing the total cost of acquiring a customer by the number of customers acquired over a specific period of time, typically a month or a year.

For example, if a company spends $100,000 on marketing and sales efforts to acquire 100 new customers in a month, its CAC for that month would be $1,000.

CAC = Total Cost of Acquiring a Customer / Number of Customers Acquired

It's important to note that CAC can vary widely among individual customers. Some customers may be more expensive to acquire than others, due to factors such as the cost of marketing to them or the length of the sales process.

Factors that Affect CAC

There are several factors that can affect a company's CAC:

  1. Marketing costs: The cost of marketing campaigns plays a significant role in determining CAC. If a company spends more on marketing, its CAC will likely be higher.
  2. Sales process efficiency: A company's sales process can also impact CAC. A long and complex sales process may increase CAC, while a streamlined process may lower it.
  3. Target audience: The characteristics of a company's target audience can also affect CAC. For example, targeting a highly specific and niche audience may increase CAC due to the need for specialized marketing efforts.
  4. Competition: If a company is operating in a crowded market with high competition, its CAC may be higher due to the need to differentiate itself and stand out from competitors.

How to Reduce CAC

There are several ways that companies can reduce their CAC:

  1. Optimize marketing efforts: By targeting the most effective marketing channels and targeting the right audience, companies can reduce the cost of acquiring new customers.
  2. Streamline the sales process: By streamlining the sales process and eliminating unnecessary steps, companies can reduce CAC.
  3. Improve customer retention: Acquiring a new customer is often more expensive than retaining an existing one. By improving customer retention rates, companies can reduce CAC.
  4. Offer incentives: Offering incentives such as discounts or free trials can help to attract new customers and reduce CAC.


In conclusion, Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) is a key metric for businesses looking to understand the efficiency of their marketing and sales efforts. By tracking CAC and identifying opportunities for improvement, companies can make strategic decisions to reduce costs and drive business success.