CUSTOMER ACQUISITION COST Definition

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CUSTOMER ACQUISITION COST is calculated by dividing total acquisition expenses by total new customers. However, there are different opinions on what constitutes an acquisition expense, e.g. rebates and special discounts do not represent an actual cash outlay, yet they have an impact on cash (and, presumably, on the customer). There is no set standard, i.e. acquisition costs vary across industries. When acquisition data is available, it is best to try to determine if you are comparing apples to apples. This is not easy, as customer acquisition data is usually scarce and the methodology is often questionable.

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ALLOWANCE FOR NOTES RECEIVABLE LOSSES is an account maintained at a level considered adequate to provide for probable losses. The provision is increased by amounts charged to earnings and reduced by net charge-offs. The level of allowance is based on management's evaluation of the portfolio, which takes into account prevailing and anticipated business and economic conditions and the net realizable value of securities held.

DEFERRED INCOME is that income for which the cash has been collected by the company, but have yet to be "earned". For example, a customer pays their annual software license upfront on the 1st Jan. As the company financial year-end is 31st May, the company would only be able to record five months of the income as turnover in the profit and loss account. The rest would be accrued in the balance sheet as a "deferred" creditor.

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