Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)

What is Good Customer Acquisition Cost? 

Customer Acquisition Costs, abbreviated as CAC, are the sum of money that a software as a service (SaaS) company spends trying to persuade potential clients to purchase its software or service. The term "total cost" refers to the amount of money spent on sales and marketing, which includes the cost of personnel and programs.

The customer acquisition cost is the best estimate of the total cost of obtaining a new customer. It's a crucial metric for fine-tuning your investment and ensuring you make the best choices for your company's expansion. Costs associated with acquiring clients should be factored in, such as those associated with advertising, marketing, sales, etc.

What's the big deal? Customers can put a company out of business if the expense to acquire them exceeds their revenue over time.

Why is it Important in SaaS? 

Calculating your CAC customer acquisition cost is crucial as it pinpoints your present spending level. After you have this figure, you will have some groundwork for future financial planning. Create targets and strategies to reduce the number over time; alternatively, you could aim to improve your CAC customer acquisition cost if you think doing so will enhance your total revenue.

Considering the lifetime worth of a customer, SaaS places an even greater emphasis on studying customer acquisition expenses than other industries. It takes most new SaaS businesses a long time and much money to start seeing a return on their investment in client acquisition. As your company expands, it is crucial to evaluate how many months of income from a customer are required to recoup these expenses, as it may take much longer than expected for your firm to recover CAC customer acquisition cost and actually begin to profit.

However, CAC customer acquisition cost is crucial to bear in mind from a pricing standpoint. If you find it too expensive to attract and keep consumers willing to pay, you may need to shift your focus to a different market segment while developing your high-value client profiles. 

On the other hand, users acquired through freemium models may drain your monetization strategy. The cost of acquiring new customers is the other half of the price equation that helps you forecast your business's future margins, revenue, and profit. To avoid your company's demise due to its inefficiencies, you must have access to these figures, which are crucial to your success.

How to Calculate Customer Acquisition Cost? 

Take your total sales and marketing expenditures for a specific time period (including the cost of human resources) and divide that figure by the total number of new customers gained during that time period to calcluate customer acquisition cost.

The key to success is creating a business strategy that guarantees you can make more money from your clients than it costs to acquire them, which might take months or even years to reach a point where you have enough cash flow to recoup CAC customer acquisition cost and produce profits. Sure, that makes sense. Unfortunately, many SaaS businesses need to pay more attention to the following customer acquisition cost formula.

Total overhead spending for marketing / total number of customers,


Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) = Total Marketing and Sales Spend in a Period

# of New Customers in a Period

Many SaaS businesses experience explosive growth before they can fully account for all of the costs associated with that expansion. Therefore, this statistic is of limited use to them at the outset. Your company's growth readiness can be assessed by CAC customer acquisition cost analysis as you hone your product, find your target market, and perfect your sales process.

Although the specifics of your firm will affect how quickly you can recoup CAC customer acquisition cost from your monthly recurring revenue, you should be able to do so within a year. While this may seem unrealistically long for your SaaS firm, it is a benchmark to aim for as your company develops. Sometimes taking your time pays off, but unless you're sitting on a massive pile of cash, you should get your money back as soon as possible.