RETARGETING ADS – How it works and the top platforms

RETARGETING ADS – How it works and the top platforms


Remarketing and retargeting are two words for the same concept. Google calls it remarketing, everyone else mostly refers to it as retargeting. Have you ever coincidentally seen ads for a product you were recently looking at on another website? Well, that wasn’t a coincidence—it was remarketing. Remarketing can happen across websites, social media, and mobile apps.


It’s been proven that the vast majority of people don’t buy on their initial visit. Some estimates say that anywhere from 95 to 98 percent of people do not buy on their first visit to a site. They may be researching, shopping around, or simply be at work and planning to come back and buy later when they have more time.

Not only is remarketing a second chance to get visitors to convert on your sites, but it’s also a great branding tool as it keeps your brand and your message in front of potential customers. Remarketing helps your brand stay top of mind, and in front of the customers who have visited your site. It helps to reinforce your brand awareness.

Remarketing is great for e-commerce sites because it reminds people to buy, but it has a lot of value even for sites that don’t sell online—we’ve successfully run branding campaigns for various types of clients including b2b. The best part of remarketing is that with most platforms, like with Google’s Remarketing in AdWords, you only pay for clicks. Therefore you can get thousands of brand impressions to people who have been to your site for free. Those impressions are valuable advertising for your brand.


Collecting visitor data
There are multiple platforms for running remarketing campaigns. For the most part they all work in the same way. To get started with remarketing, you first add a JavaScript tag to your site. With this code applied, your retargeting platform will now begin placing cookies on your visitor’s sites and collecting information about their behavior on your site. While no personal information is collected from your visitors, it’s still important to make sure you have a privacy policy on your site that mentions that you are using cookies and visitor data for marketing purposes.

Building your lists
Remarketing lists allow you to define and segment your audience based on what pages they visit on your site. At the broadest level, you can create a remarketing list of all people who simply visited your website. You can get more specific and make a list of people who viewed a certain page, category of pages or combination of pages. For example, if you have an e-commerce site you could create a list of people who visited a certain product page and shopping cart page but who didn’t make it to the checkout page. You can get creative and specific to target specific groups of visitors on your site.

Building the campaigns
After you’ve created your remarketing lists, you then want to create specific ad campaigns that will be displayed to these lists. For example, if you’ve created a remarketing list for people who visited the product page of XYZ product, you might want to display ads for XYZ product. If you have a remarketing list of people who added products to their cart but didn’t make a purchase, you could display an ad for a discount coupon or free shipping on a purchase.


Google AdWords
A simple solution for users who are comfortable with the AdWords platform. However it is limited to the Google Display Network and doesn’t offer any Facebook retargeting options. This service is great for people looking for an easy, quick solution without any headaches.

AdRoll is the most widely used remarketing platform. Thousands of brands trust AdRoll to retarget site visitors with ads across Facebook, Twitter, mobile, and the web. We have used Adroll for a number of clients and have had great experiences. Their customer service is also well-run and responsive.

Retargeter is great for larger volume sites. ReTargeter has some unique advertising solutions which will put you ahead of the pack. search retargeting

Rubicon Project
The Rubicon Project prides itself on having a huge network of data partners. Using their search retargeting option to target potential customers with an intent to buy will give you an upper hand over your competitors when it comes to search engine marketing. But it isn’t for the fainthearted—the minimum price is $10,000 to set up a campaign. If you are just taking your first steps in the remarketing world, it may be wise to use one of the other platforms before you dive into the deep end with The Rubicon Project.

Perfect Audience
Perfect Audience is a great option for small businesses that are keen to learn a bit more about online advertising without spending a ton of money. The range of options is great for e-commerce stores using third party platforms like WordPress, Shopify, Magento, or 3dcart. And it has a great demand-side platform, letting you retarget your site’s recent visitors by plugging into a number of ad networks and ad exchanges across the web (Facebook included). Features, support and customer service are all excellent.

ActionX specializes in retargeting across mobile devices and across screens. So, if a user visits your site on their phone, you can take that information and then target them on their laptop or other device.