Retargeting – The Hottest Phrase in Search Marketing Circles and Why You Must Get On Board

I think it would be safe to say that one of the big buzz words in the past year in the online marketing world has been “retargeting” or “remarketing.”

We get at least two emails a week from various different retargeting platforms trying to sell their wares and tears.

From speaking with various different ecommerce operators and site owners it seems that everyone is certainly talking about re-marketing and using it as a buzzword, but from my conversations, not a lot of people are actually engaged in it as part of their online marketing strategy.

Before we continue, maybe a quick overview of what retargeting actually is.

Retargeting In a Nutshell

Ever been to a website clicked around, continued surfing the web and about five minutes later you end up on another site, and low and behold you see some display ads for the site you were on about 5 minutes ago?

At first you think, that’s weird, I was just there?? You may even look over your shoulder thinking that big brother might be watching you…..

Well, this is re-targeting.

adwords retargeting

It’s the basic act of placing certain tags on your pages and allowing your display ads to appear to people who just left your site.

Pretty cool huh?

So it’s quite obvious why this type of SEM works so well and why it’s an absolute no-brainer for anyone looking to bring back potential shoppers or clients to their site.

It’s like have a sales person from your store run down the road chasing after a shopper who just left your store and asking them to “Please come back” (without being to intrusive).

How To Set Up A Retargeting Campaign?

Thankfully, pulling together and trial testing a re-targeting campaign isn’t so expensive or hard to implement. The model is usually run on a pay per click basis, and there are a bunch of different providers that can help you get going.

It’s really a matter of taking a series of tags or javascript and placing them on your pages according to the requirements of the platform.

Google Adwords offer a simple retargeting program as part of their platform offerings however there are a few flaws and things to consider before going live with them.

Just like their website optimizer tool that is also free in Adwords, their re-targeting technology is great in the sense that their reach through their content network is massive, but the ability to set up and execute as strategically as some of the more customized platforms is somewhat limited.

Some of the other providers worth investigating are Criteo, Chango, AdRoll. All these companies offer a pretty savvy range of feature sets to really drive home a strong ROI on your advertising dollar.

I’ve investigated most of them for different clients and have my preferences but when it comes down to it, the differences between them all are quite subtle, and if your average site traffic volumes are under 500,000 uniques a month then most of these providers will do the trick.

All of them offer pretty simple integration solutions to get up and running and solid backend reporting which helps you determine your ROI and effectiveness of the campaign.

However, there is one main golden secret to making your re-marketing campaign work successfully.

The Golden Key To Re-Marketing

Without confusing you to much, we are going to introduce another big buzz word that agencies love talking about that still might seem a little vague to many online marketers.

But the real secret to success with re-targeting revolves around what’s called Behavioural targeting and segmenting.

Basically, this means that you set you campaign up and tag your site in a certain way that allows you to determine how far along your shopper got in their shopping process and which products they were looking at and being able to re-market your banners to specific groups of people.

For example, take a shopper who viewed five products in your electronics section. Wouldn’t it be great to display an electronics banner to that specific shopper and a generic banner to someone who only came to your homepage and left straight away?

Nice idea hey?

In Summary

Stop what you’re doing right now. Take a look at the sites above and make a decision this week to trial out a re-targeting campaign. Watch the demo versions on their sites.

We are also here to help you along if you need some assistance getting started and making your re-targeting campaign work for you.

Leave a comment below with any questions or feel free to share your experience with re-targeting

1 thought on “Retargeting – The Hottest Phrase in Search Marketing Circles and Why You Must Get On Board”

  1. Hi Daniel,
    Great summary (and thanks for the shout out). Absolutely agree ‘retargeting’ is becoming such a buzzword that it’s getting harder to understand what it actually does and doesn’t. In fact there are at least 7 types of retargeting, the most common one is ‘site retargeting’ which fits your description above. This method relies on users visiting your web site before hand. But is does not reach in-market customers who are searching your products and services buy have not visited your web site. This is where search retargeting (serving ads based on a user’s history) is a great complement to site retargeting. And of course, there are many other ways to use retargeting for conquesting or prospecting.

    Here’s an infographic that hopefully will demystify retargeting:

    And a whitepaper that goes a little deeper:

    Ben Plomion

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