What goes around, comes back around: How to make sure every website visit turns into a conversion with retargeting

But what is retargeting? Imagine you make a list of everyone that steps into your store, and then you cross out with a big red line those customers who make a purchase. When you set up retargeting ads, you are honing in on, or “targeting” the people that do NOT have a big red line through their name. These are the people who didn’t purchase (“convert”) and the people we are going to bring back with very clever tools.

Retargeting ads can work in one of two ways: Pixel-based or List-based retargeting. Pixel-based retargeting is the most common and uses a user’s cookies to alert Google that they have hopped on and off of your website without making a purchase. Google will then automatically show your ads to this user when they continue to search for related products or services. Pixel-based targeting allows for more specific ads – let’s say a user spends the majority of their time looking at boots or hats on your website. When they exit your site, Google will show them your more specific boot and hat ads.

List-based retargeting is your more traditional subscription-based strategy, using the email addresses input into your site from your traffic. This strategy rests on a very specific demographic of users who frequent your site and show more niche shopping behaviours that can be leveraged when creating campaigns to bring them back after a lost conversion.  Let’s say you’re using this strategy and you have a customer who is interested in your Summer bag collection, but it’s a bit too expensive for them at the moment, so they leave the site. In the meantime, they’ve left their email address to be notified of any sales or promotions. Now you have the opportunity to email this customer directly (“EDM marketing”) with your new “Summer Bag Collection 50% OFF” campaign and secure the conversion (or quite literally, secure the bag) you missed out on the first time.

Not only can retargeting hone in on customers who thought they could nab a better deal ‘elsewhere, but’ retargeting also works to entice your converting customer base to purchase new and related products on your website. Maybe one of your customers bought a pair of boots from your site but missed out on the pair of socks, shoelaces, leather polish, and boot brush they need to keep their new boots clean and fresh. Retargeting can follow this customer and show them relevant ads directing them back to your site to finish their purchases, and voila! You’ve upsold four products with the help of Ad retargeting.

According to Google, integrating retargeting alongside your existing marketing strategy can help increase your overall sales by 50%. Stop letting your customers fall between the cracks and use retargeting tools to funnel each customer back to your products.