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CPL, CR, CAC, HIKE!

CPL, CR, CAC, HIKE!
Ready to learn more about conversion rates, cost per lead, and more? Our latest article is designed to help you understand some of the more jargony parts of the marketing biz.

If you’ve explored our website at all, you’ve undoubtedly seen us describing some of the successes our customers have experienced. We use terms like “reduced cost-per-lead” and “conversion rate increases.” 

We realized not everyone knows those terms.

So, in an effort to educate—and coincidentally really show off what we can do—we put together this miniature glossary. Read on to learn what exactly some of those terms are and what they mean for your diesel repair shop’s marketing efforts! 

What is cost per lead, anyway?

Cost-per-lead is the amount of money you need to spend to get someone to take a desired action through Google Ads—usually that action is calling your shop or filling out an appointment form.

“It’s a good benchmark because it tells you whether your advertising is working for you,” says Jacob Arrington, Paid Media Manager at Fullbay. “You want to make sure these leads that you are essentially buying from Google are paying for themselves.” 

Okay. How much should my cost-per-lead…well…cost?

Here’s where things get a little tricky. There aren’t really benchmarks around the diesel industry. We’ll get into what we can do to determine what your cost-per-lead should be later, but for now, let’s take a look at two semi-related industries (note—the below numbers are just ranges and can go higher or lower depending on all kinds of circumstances!): 

  • Auto repair service leads can range from $30-$60.
  • Industrial repairs can go up to $80-$100. 

You probably don’t want to go much beyond $100—but that will depend on what products or services you’re advertising. You definitely don’t want your cost-per-lead to be more expensive than the actual service you’re providing. “You probably don't even want it to be half the price,” Jacob advises, “because not everyone who actually turns into a lead will end up becoming a customer and buying that service.”

Here’s an extremely simplified example: If you charge $100 for winterizing a truck, but a lead for that winterizing costs $105, you’re losing money. 

For the record, Dieselmatic partners spend an average of $45 per lead. 

Do I want a higher or lower cost per lead?

Brace yourself: it depends. 

(Sorry!)

The goal is to get the most efficient cost per lead you can. If you’re chasing after the lowest-cost lead you can get, you can just wind up in what advertising calls a “walled garden.” That’s where you know something is going to work out—say you keep bidding on the same few keywords that you know will give you a positive ROI. 

Nice, right? No harm, no foul. But in doing that, you’re limiting your reach and your ability to find new customers through Google Ads. 

In short, sometimes you gotta spend money to earn money. 

What is a conversion rate?

Your conversion rate is a conversion divided by the number of clicks it took a person to convert (by making a call or scheduling). Rather than count spending, it’s counting clicks (or taps, we guess, if a customer is using a touchscreen).

Your conversion rate correlates directly to how effective your Google Ads are. But, Jacob says, it is also a strong indicator of how effective your landing page or call to action is when it comes to getting people to take a desired action and become a lead. 

Basically, it’s a good overview of how effective your advertising efforts are after someone clicks one of your ads. Because you’re paying for each of those clicks, a low conversion rate may mean you’ve got problems—like unclear messaging or a messy or nonfunctional landing page.

What is considered a good conversion rate?

Again, that depends—on your industry, your customers, and other factors.

We can look to the automotive industry for some initial markers; a good conversion rate for that field is usually between 6% and 12%. Now, to be clear, a lot more people are searching for automotive services than heavy-duty diesel repair services, but it is a place to start. 

We’ll make it easy for you, though: a good conversion rate is one you can handle. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Can you afford it?
  • Is it netting you leads and new customers?

If the answer to both of those questions is yes, then you’ve got a good conversion rate. But then you’ve got to ask yourself more questions—like whether you could improve on it.

Isn’t marketing fun?!

(What’s that, you ask? “What kind of conversion rate do Dieselmatic partners see?” Why, yes, we can share that: Our customers see an average 10.93% conversion rate. Nice.)

What is CAC?

Last but not least, let’s take a look at the cost of acquiring customers, or the cleverly acronym’d CAC. 

CAC is basically your marketing spend. It’s the final step in the process that begins with a lead and ends with a paying customer. And…well, it involves math.

If you have 20 leads that cost you $100 per lead, you spent $2,000 getting those 20 leads. That might look efficient on Google Ads…but you only end up selling to two of those people.

That means you’re averaging about $1,000 per customer. 

Maybe that still works for you. Maybe those two customers you do gain will be lifetime customers. Maybe they’re bringing in a ton of trucks. This is where marketing gets a little murky; you have to decide whether you’re getting a good ROI on your efforts. 

Your CAC also gives you areas to look at. What happened to those other 18 customers? You spent money to get them looking at your site and calling in. Did they want services you didn’t offer? You can use that data to inform your advertising practices and make sure you’re getting leads who want services you offer. 

Do I Really Need to Know This Stuff?

We know, we know. All this marketing jargon and talk of spend and ROI can get exhausting, and you’ve got a shop to run! 

But even if you hire a team to handle your marketing (maybe especially if you hire a team), you’ll want a basic understanding of what they’re doing. 

“You want to make sure you’re spending your money wisely,” Jacob says. Look, you work hard for your revenue in a labor-intensive industry. Any money you’re putting into it should be flowing back out to you, for want of a better phrase. 

You could, of course, put the Dieselmatic team to work for you. We already shared some numbers with you, but hey, we’re all about showing off, so below, you can see before-and-after reports from one of our customers. 

Before Dieselmatic started working one partner's account
Results after Dieselmatic started work on the account

Here’s what those numbers mean: 

We decreased the average cost per click from $6.23 to $5.44 (by ↓12.68%)

We increased conversions from 102 to 114 (by ↑11.76%)

We decreased the cost per conversion from $80.32 to $56.0.3 (by ↓30.25%)

We decreased the overall cost from $8.19K to $6.39K (by ↓22.04%)

We increased the conversion rate from 7.76% to 9.71% (by ↑ 25.19%)

Yeah, those are good numbers—and better yet, you don’t have to lift a finger to get to them.

So get in touch—your conversion rates are waiting!

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