What is Retargeting and How to Do it Correctly

Retargeting is a crucial component of digital advertising and something that every business owner should be aware of. It can have a huge impact on sales, and often with little cost to the business.

But what is retargeting? And how can you incorporate it into your digital marketing strategy for optimal results?

Keep reading to find out everything you need to know about retargeting advertising.

What Is Retargeting? 

Retargeting shows advertising to potential customers who have already interacted with your brand. Let's imagine a scenario to make this simple.

Laura visits your website, browses various products, and even gets to the check-out stage for a particular item. However, she then leaves the website without making a purchase. Later, when browsing Facebook, she sees an ad for your business. This is an example of retargeting.

The term 'retargeting' is often synonymous with 'remarketing'. Remarketing can sometimes imply an email campaign, whereas retargeting refers to social media or display network ads.

How Does Retargeting Work?

When someone browses your website, a tracking pixel captures their data for analytic purposes. This is done without the user being aware, and their personal information is confidential and cannot be accessed by the website owner.

Google and Facebook collate lists of these users which can then be applied to an advertising campaign. In this way, you can run several campaigns simultaneously. Each one can target a different group of the population based on their previous interaction with your brand.

When applied to Facebook, the retargeting campaign can appear as standard ads in a user's newsfeed. However, as with a normal campaign, the ads can also appear in stories, on Instagram, in the column to the side of Facebook, and many more placements.

For a campaign using Google, the retargeting campaign can appear in a side column as a display ad, or on YouTube as both an image or a video. Equally, a retargeting campaign can resemble a traditional Google SEM campaign with ads appearing at the top of search results.

Retargeting can also be applied to other social media platforms. These include LinkedIn, Pinterest, TikTok, Microsoft, and Snapchat. However, this article will focus on Google and Facebook ad retargeting

Why Is Retargeting Helpful?

Retargeting is a valuable marketing technique for several reasons. To start, it allows you to direct your advertising to potential customers who are already positively inclined to your brand. These campaigns thus offer a higher ROI (return on investment). This is because they are already familiar with your brand, and most likely interested in your products.

Check out our post on the cost of social media marketing to get a better idea of the budget you'll need.

In many cases, a customer will have failed to complete a purchase simply due to a lack of time or distraction. Seeing an ad from this business will be the only incentive needed to complete the purchase process.

Secondly, retargeting is a useful strategy because it allows you to customize your ads depending on the existing relationship between brand and customer. For example, an 'awareness' motivation might drive your campaigns for users who are not yet familiar with your business.

However, your retargeting campaign can adopt a 'conversion' motivation. This means utilizing different wording and images that encourage to move further down the marketing funnel.

For example, you might want to offer a discount specifically to customers who made it to the check-out stage and are therefore highly likely to complete the purchase.

How Can You Apply Retargeting Correctly?

The first step is to ensure your tracking pixel is up and running. Here are more details for how to set up your Facebook pixel and Google tag - another name for a pixel. Once this is in place, you're good to go.

Note: a list of emails can also be applied as the audience of a retargeting campaign. However, using a pixel generally provides more efficient and accurate results.

Next, audience segmentation is a crucial element for successful retargeting. This means grouping the people who will see your ads, and adjusting your budget and the ad itself accordingly.

A user's behavior when on your website should be a factor for audience segmentation. Those who immediately clicked off your website without browsing any pages will not make good leads for retargeting. However, someone who spent ten minutes browsing your site, looking at lots of products, and even making it to the check-out is the kind of potential customer you want to target.

The frequency with which a potential customer will see your ad is also something to consider. Not seeing the ad enough might mean it doesn't have an impact, while too high a frequency could cause irritation and boredom from the audience.

A final element to consider is retargeting your existing customers, not just those who have browsed your website. If, for example, your business has a new line of products, you may want to make previous customers aware of this. This could also apply to a new feature that your service provides or a new promotion that you want to push.

Ad Optimization

The last thing to be aware of in regards to retargeting is making sure the ad itself is dynamic and attention-grabbing. This means using a snappy headline, an engaging and high-quality image, and an effective CTA (call to action).

Finally, the retargeting ad should direct the user to a page other than your homepage - known as the . If you are promoting a specific line of products or a promotion, then this is a great opportunity to drive your potential customer to this page.

When Will You Set up a Retargeting Campaign?

Now you know what is retargeting and its different applications across digital marketing. It is a fundamental element of any good ad campaign and it is extremely beneficial to almost every business.

We've looked at everything from installing a pixel to audience segmentation. You should now be ready to implement an effective retargeting campaign and reap the benefits.

Feel free to contact us for more information about how to build your digital ad campaign and for how retargeting can help your business.