Picture this. You own a charter bus company and you’ve calculated how many leads you need to secure enough clients to stay afloat. 

The magic number? 150.

Your conversion history demonstrates that you manage to convert about one in three leads. By that logic, 150 leads per month result in approximately 50 clients. But, how can you calculate how much 150 charter bus leads will cost you with Google Ads?

Recently, I spoke with an operator from Dallas who had this exact goal, and it made me think about the strategies other operators can use to determine this number. 

In this article, we’ll cover the two things all transportation operators should consider when budgeting to reach their minimum lead target. Keep reading to learn more.

Want to reach more charter bus clients? Limo Marketer does more than just Google Ads strategies. We also provide robust SEO campaigns and digital marketing training to set your team up for success. If you’re ready to get more leads, we’ve got you covered. Contact us today for a free consultation.

Prefer to watch? Check out the video version of this post here:

Cost Per Click for Charter Bus Leads

Cost per click (CPC) in the transportation operator industry varies greatly by market. 

Some of the common markets include people looking for:

  • Charter bus
  • Group transportation
  • Wedding transportation
  • Wedding shuttle
  • Other event-specific shuttles

The most expensive markets are the populated metropolitan areas. In San Francisco, for example, you can expect to pay approximately $15 per click.

The client I mentioned previously is from Dallas. After some research, I discovered the average cost per click in that market was $6. 

Now, remember, that’s $6 per click, not per lead. 

The Difference Between a Lead and a Click

The difference between a lead and a click is substantial. 

A click is when a user clicks on your ad. Just because someone clicks on your ad doesn’t mean they are going to reach out or become a client. 

A lead, on the other hand, involves someone initiating a conversation about your services. This can come in the form of a phone call, an online form submission, an email, or a live chat.

Leads are incredibly important and reports have found that lead generation is a top priority for marketers. In a Google Ads campaign, clicks result in leads, so CPC is an essential figure to determine lead cost.

Conversion Rate for Charter Bus Leads

If your campaign is successful, it should have a high conversion rate. Here are some factors that influence conversion rate: 

If your campaign targets the right clients, and you have a quality website or landing page, you can expect about a quarter of your clicks to convert to a lead. 

To determine your conversion number, you’ll need to divide the number of clicks your ad gets by the number of leads that result from those clicks. So, if you get 1000 clicks and 330 leads in a month, that number is three. 

[Clicks] ÷ [Leads] = [Number of clicks to convert a lead]

Cost Per Charter Bus Lead

You now have all the information you need to calculate the cost per lead. To get your cost per lead, multiply your CPC by your conversion number. Here’s the formula:

[CPC] x [Number of clicks to convert a lead] = [Cost per lead]

Let’s revisit the example of my client in Dallas.

If the CPC in Dallas is $6 and my client has a conversion rate of one in three, that would make his cost per lead $18. 

6 x 3 = 18

Now let’s calculate the cost of 150 leads.

[Lead target] x [Cost per lead] = [Total cost]

150 x $18 = $2700 

So, if my client wanted to get 150 charter bus leads per month in Dallas, he would need to spend approximately $2700 per month on his ads campaign.

Return on Ad Spend for Charter Bus Leads

Once you know your cost per lead, you can use the information to gain even more insight into your business profitability. 

If you get 150 leads per month and you close approximately one in three leads, you can use these figures to determine your client acquisition costs.

In this client’s case, he’s landing 50 clients per month. Using this information in the following formula will result in an estimated client acquisition cost.

[Number of leads] x [Percentage of leads that close] = [Client acquisition cost]

150 x .33 = 49.5

You can use your client acquisition cost to determine your return on ad spend by multiplying it by your average ticket price.

[Client acquisition cost] x [Average ticket price] = [Return on ad spend]

In this client’s case, his average ticket price is $500:

49.5 x 500 = $24,750 

Ways to Improve Charter Bus Ad Spend Costs

Now that you’ve calculated these factors, let’s look at a few best practices to follow to improve your results.

  • Lowering your CPC: Ensure you are targeting the right clients with good keyword strategies.
    • Increase your conversion rate: Add clear CTAs and more contact options to your landing page to appeal to the needs of various customers. 
    • Increase your close rate: Focus on following up with clients, asking the right questions, and providing excellent customer service in the conversion stage.
  • Increase your average ticket price: Provide more value with your services.

Convert More Charter Bus Leads With Limo Marketer

The ultimate goal of any transport operator marketing campaign is to collect clients and convert them to repeat clients. This way, your business begins generating leads organically. 

So, while the initial acquisition costs associated with a Google Ads campaign can appear steep, keep in mind this cost will lower with time. In this way, a solid ads campaign is an investment in your business.

Looking to generate more leads? Limo Marketer specializes in providing excellent marketing support exclusively for transportation providers such as charter bus and shuttle services. Our track record of excellent results demonstrates our commitment to the growth of transportation operators in local markets all over the U.S.

Contact us today to learn more about how we can support your business, and subscribe to our YouTube channel for more expert transportation marketing advice.

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