Guides and Templates

Online customer acquisition budget spreadsheet

Create a month-by-month budget for online customer acquisition planning

How will this Excel acquisition budget help me and my business?

This spreadsheet is designed for use alongside our online acquisition strategy guide, in particular, Step 5 on creating an acquisition budget.

It's designed to enable medium and larger businesses create a zero-based budget allocating media spend across the main digital marketing channels. It allows a different spend to be allocated each month.

To use the spreadsheet, you work back from an overall, annual online acquisition revenue target, in order to define the monthly traffic volume and conversion percentages required across digital channels to meet the objective.

Using past performance data (or if you don't have the data, your assumptions) you can then model various combinations of digital channel activity to determine the best mix to meet your target ROI and acquisition volumes.

You can then put together your digital acquisition budget, relating your spend allocation to the best performing channel mix model. This budget is a starting point and a useful way to justify your marketing investment plans to other stakeholders - but do track actual performance against ROI and volume targets to ensure that budget is allocated fluidly to the best performing channels through the year. You can also add the resource required to manage each channel (expressed in "man" days) to help your planning/budgeting.

How does the budget spreadsheet work?

We recommend 4 stages in creating your acquisition budget:

  • Stage 1. Enter revenue targets to calculate traffic and conversion targets using a simple conversion model (Sheet 2)
  • Stage 2. Build an online marketing plan. Allocate to individual channels and apportion seasonality across each month and human resource requirements (Sheet 3)
  • Stage 3. Build your budget. Allocate your marketing pounds effectively to support the activity to achieve defined channel targets (Sheet 3)
  • Stage 4. Map channel targets against last year’s month by month performance (Sheet 2)

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