June 21


Benefits of Retargeting: Getting the Most Out of Marketing

By Hanson Cheng

June 21, 2023

  • minute read
  • Last Updated on June 21, 2023 by Hanson Cheng

    In this article, readers will learn about retargeting, its various types, such as site, search, email, and cross-platform retargeting, and how it works by tracking data, segmenting audiences, and creating relevant ads. The benefits of retargeting will also be discussed, including increased conversion rates, building brand awareness, and enhanced user experience.

    Additionally, the article covers advanced personalization techniques like dynamic creative optimization and behavioral targeting. Lastly, measuring and analyzing performance through key metrics and optimizing retargeting campaigns will be explored.

    Understanding Retargeting

    What is Retargeting?

    Retargeting, also known as remarketing, is a digital marketing strategy aimed at re-engaging potential customers who have previously visited a website or had interactions with a brand but did not convert or complete a desired action (such as making a purchase, signing up for a newsletter, downloading an app, etc.).

    Retargeting primarily aims to bring these potential customers back to the site by delivering personalized, relevant advertisements to them as they browse other web pages or social media platforms. This enhances the chances of them returning to the website and completing a conversion.

    How Retargeting Works

    Retargeting works by using cookie-based technology to collect data and track a user’s browsing behavior. This allows the advertiser to deliver targeted advertisements to users who have demonstrated previous interest in their products or services, increasing the overall effectiveness of the advertising campaign and improving the return on investment.

    Tracking and Collecting Data

    To begin retargeting, the first step is to track and collect data on website visitors. This is done through the use of cookies, and small text files that are stored on a user’s computer or device when they visit a website. When a user visits your site, a cookie is placed on their device, allowing you to track their browsing behavior and interactions on your website. This data can include information such as pages viewed, items added to a cart, time spent on a page, and more.

    Segmenting Audiences

    Once you have collected data on user behavior, the next step is to segment your audience based on their interactions with your site. Advertisers can identify user behavior patterns, preferences, and demographics by analyzing the information collected. This allows for the creation of precise audience segments that can be better targeted through ad campaigns.

    For example, you may choose to target users who have viewed a specific product page, users who have abandoned their cart before completing a purchase, or even users who have visited a blog post on a relevant topic.

    Creating Relevant Ads

    After identifying and segmenting your audience, the next step is to create customized, relevant advertisements that are tailored to the specific segments identified. The objective is to deliver ads that effectively address user preferences and browsing behavior, making it more likely for the customer to return to your site and complete a conversion. For example, if a user has viewed a particular product, you may create an ad showcasing that product or similar items which may interest the user.

    Different Types of Retargeting

    There are several types of retargeting strategies, each with its own unique approach and focus. Understanding and implementing the best strategy for your brand can contribute to the success of your retargeting campaigns.

    Site Retargeting

    Site retargeting focuses on targeting users who have previously visited a specific website, usually the advertiser’s own site. Through tracking and audience segmentation, site retargeting campaigns deliver targeted ads to users as they browse other websites in an effort to bring them back to the initial site to complete a conversion.

    Search Retargeting

    Search retargeting targets users based on the search keywords they have used on search engines such as Google or Bing. Once the user’s search intent is identified, they are shown targeted ads relevant to their search query as they browse other sites. This approach allows advertisers to reach potential new customers who have expressed an interest in their products or services through their search behavior.

    Email Retargeting

    Email retargeting is a strategy where email sends personalized and targeted ads to users. This can be triggered by various user behaviors such as cart abandonment, browsing specific product pages, or even visiting the site a certain number of times without making a purchase. Email retargeting can be an effective way to re-engage customers and encourage them to complete a conversion.

    Cross-Platform Retargeting

    Cross-platform retargeting involves delivering targeted ads to users across multiple digital platforms and devices. This strategy takes into account the various devices a user may utilize – such as mobile, desktop, or tablet – to ensure consistent messaging and brand exposure throughout the customer’s browsing journey. This type of retargeting helps create a seamless user experience, making it easier for customers to complete conversions across their preferred platforms.

    Increase in Conversion Rates

    One of the primary reasons businesses invest in marketing and advertising is to increase conversion rates. A conversion rate is the percentage of potential customers who take the desired action (purchase, subscription, etc.) on your website or online platform. Marketers can boost conversion rates and achieve a higher return on investment by focusing on engaging strategies and utilizing the right tools. 

    Re-engaging Potential Customers

    One effective way to increase conversion rates is by re-engaging potential customers who have previously shown interest in your product or service but have not yet converted. This can be achieved through retargeting strategies, which typically involve using cookies or similar tracking technologies to monitor users’ online behavior and serve targeted advertisements based on their past actions.

    Retargeting ads can show potential customers products they have previously viewed on your website or present them with relevant offers and promotions that may entice them to complete a transaction. Email marketing can also be an effective tool for re-engagement, especially when combined with personalization and automation tactics. Maintaining a healthy balance between nurturing leads and avoiding spamming your audience with excessive communication is important.

    Tailored Advertising for Specific Audiences

    Increasing conversion rates also involves identifying the right target audience for your products or services and tailoring your advertising campaigns accordingly. Understanding your target audience’s preferences, interests, and demographics enables you to create advertisements that resonate with them, leading to a higher chance of a conversion.

    Segmentation tools can help you divide your target audience into smaller, more specific groups based on various criteria, such as age, location, and interests. Creating personalized content that caters to each segment will increase your chances of conversions and enhance your brand positioning and reputation in the market.

    Higher Click-Through Rates

    A high click-through rate (CTR) is essential for driving conversions. The more often users click on your ads, the more likely they are to complete the desired action. To achieve higher CTRs, marketers must design engaging and compelling advertising materials, select the right advertising platforms, and continuously test and refine their strategies.

    Displaying captivating visuals, using strong headlines and calls to action, and focusing on your unique selling points can all contribute to a higher CTR. Additionally, utilizing data-driven insights and real-time feedback can help you identify which channels and ad placements yield the best results for your target audience.

    Optimizing Ad Spend

    Marketers must also focus on optimizing their advertising budgets to increase conversion rates. This involves closely monitoring campaign performance and making necessary adjustments to ensure that you are efficiently allocating your resources and achieving the desired results.

    One way to optimize ad spend is by reducing wasted impressions, which are instances of your ad being served to users who are not part of your target audience or are unlikely to convert. Tools such as programmatic advertising platforms and granular targeting options can help you control ad placements to ensure your ads are reaching the right audience segments.

    Another method to optimize ad spend is by making the most efficient use of your advertising budget. This can be done through various tactics, such as setting bidding strategies that align with your campaign objectives, prioritizing high-performing channels, and allocating more resources to campaigns with the highest return on ad spend (ROAS). By proactively managing and optimizing your advertising budget, you can maximize your potential conversion rates while minimizing wasted expenditures.

    Building Brand Awareness and Recall

    Building brand awareness and recall is essential for businesses to stay relevant and competitive in today’s fast-paced market. Increasing your brand’s visibility and recognition can attract more customers, drive sales growth, and foster customer loyalty.

    Frequent Exposure to Brand Messaging

    One way to build brand awareness and recall is by frequently exposing your target market to your brand messaging. By consistently sharing your brand’s message, you can better connect with your audience, ensure your brand remains memorable, and develop a lasting impression.

    Here are some strategies for achieving frequent exposure to brand messaging:

    1. Utilize multiple marketing channels: Maximize your reach by promoting your brand across different marketing channels, such as digital advertising, email marketing, content marketing, social media marketing, and event marketing. This will increase your brand’s visibility, allowing you to connect with a wider audience and create multiple touchpoints for potential customers.

    2. Leverage influencers and partnerships: Work with influencers or partner with other brands that share a similar target market. This can increase your brand’s exposure, create unique content opportunities, and foster positive associations between your brand and well-regarded personalities or entities.

    3. Engage in targeted advertising: Use targeted advertising to ensure your brand messaging reaches relevant audiences. By utilizing demographic data, preferences, and online behaviors, you can create personalized ad experiences that resonate with your target market and improve brand recall.

    4. Utilize remarketing: Retarget potential customers who have visited your website, engaged with your content or initiated contact with your brand by serving them personalized ads through remarketing. This improves brand exposure and recall by reminding visitors of your brand, its products, or its services.

    Keeping Your Brand Top-of-Mind

    Keeping your brand top-of-mind is essential in building brand awareness and recall. This means ensuring your brand remains visible, memorable, and relevant to your target audience. Here are some strategies to help you achieve this goal:

    1. Produce engaging content: Create high-quality, engaging content that showcases your brand’s value, expertise, and personality. This could include blog posts, videos, podcasts, or social media updates that provide value, entertain, or educate your audience.

    2. Engage with your audience: Actively engage with your target market through social media, email communication, or community forums. This demonstrates your brand’s authenticity and willingness to listen to customer feedback, fostering strong customer relationships and improving brand recall.

    3. Maintain a strong online presence: Ensure your website is user-friendly and well-designed, featuring clear brand messaging, visuals, and calls to action. Regularly update and optimize your website for search engine ranking, as this will boost brand visibility and recall.

    4. Participate in industry events: Attend or sponsor industry events to showcase your brand’s expertise and engage your target market face-to-face. Attending relevant events can expand your network and increase your brand’s visibility, credibility, and recall.

    Creating a Consistent and Cohesive Brand Presence

    A consistent and cohesive brand presence is essential for building brand awareness and recall. This means ensuring your brand identity and messaging are consistent across all marketing channels, touchpoints, and customer experiences.

    Here are some strategies to create a consistent and cohesive brand presence:

    1. Establish a clear brand identity: Develop a strong and clear brand identity, including your brand’s logo, color scheme, typography, tone of voice, and imagery. Ensure that all marketing materials and touchpoints adhere to these guidelines for a consistent brand experience.

    2. Utilize a consistent brand voice: Communicate with your audience using a unique and consistent brand voice. This should reflect your brand’s personality and values, enhancing brand recognition and fostering a strong emotional connection with your target market.

    3. Maintain visual consistency: Visual elements such as logos, colors, and typography should be consistent across all marketing channels, including your website, social media profiles, email templates, and other promotional materials.

    4. Align customer experience: Ensure that the customer experience aligns with your brand messaging and promise, from online interactions to in-store or service experiences. This will enhance brand recall and loyalty by providing customers with a consistent and memorable brand experience.

    By implementing these strategies, focusing on frequent exposure, keeping your brand top-of-mind, and creating a consistent and cohesive brand presence, you can effectively build brand awareness and recall, setting your business up for long-term success in a competitive marketplace.

    Advanced Personalization and Customization

    In the competitive world of digital marketing, personalization, and customization are key drivers of success. As marketers aim to engage with target audiences and improve ad performance, advanced personalization, and customization techniques have emerged to assist in providing more relevant and impactful experiences for consumers. 

    Dynamic Creative Optimization

    Dynamic Creative Optimization (DCO) is a powerful advanced personalization technology that allows marketers to create and deliver customized ad experiences in real-time automatically. This technology enables marketers to maximize the impact of their ad campaigns by matching the right creative elements with the right audience segments. Let’s delve deeper into real-time ad customization and testing different ad elements.

    Real-Time Ad Customization

    Real-time ad customization allows marketers to update ad creatives in real-time based on the preferences and behavior of individual users. This greatly enhances the personalization and effectiveness of ads, as it ensures that the messaging and creative elements resonate with each unique user.

    DCO leverages machine learning algorithms and data analytics to analyze users’ behavior, preferences, and demographics. By evaluating this data, DCO systems can generate customized ad creatives that are tailored to meet the specific needs and interests of the target audience.

    Testing Different Ad Elements

    Another crucial aspect of advanced personalization through DCO is testing different ad elements. This involves evaluating various combinations of copy, images, CTAs, and layouts to determine which performs best among various user segments.

    Automated A/B and multivariate testing can be conducted to measure the effectiveness of these different elements. The primary goal of testing is to identify the optimal combination of elements for different audience groups, which can then be served dynamically to maximize the conversion rate and overall ad performance.

    Behavioral Targeting

    Behavioral targeting refers to the process of leveraging customer data to create personalized messaging and online experiences based on their past behavior, preferences, and actions. This data-driven approach allows marketers to deliver highly relevant content, offers, and ads, resulting in increased engagement and conversion rates.

    We will now explore how customer data can be used for effective messaging and targeting customers based on their interactions.

    Using Customer Data for Effective Messaging

    The key to successful behavioral targeting is collecting and analyzing customer data. This includes both first-party data, such as user interactions with your website, and third-party data, such as demographic and psychographic insights from data providers.

    Marketers can utilize this data to understand their audience and craft messaging that is tailored to their preferences and habits. This approach increases the likelihood of a user taking the desired action – such as making a purchase or signing up for a newsletter – and fosters stronger relationships between the brand and its audience.

    Targeting Customers Based on Interactions

    Segmenting customers based on their past interactions and behavior is another critical aspect of advanced personalization. Customer interactions can include actions like browsing specific products or categories, abandoning a shopping cart, or engaging with certain content.

    Classification of customers into different segments allows marketers to target them with personalized messages and offers. For instance, targeting users who abandoned their carts with personalized reminder emails or ads can help drive them back to completing the transaction.

    Advanced personalization and customization through Dynamic Creative Optimization and Behavioral Targeting are vital components of a successful digital marketing strategy. By leveraging real-time ad customization, testing different ad elements, and using customer data to create tailored messaging, marketers can significantly increase conversion rates and foster lasting, positive relationships with their customers.

    Enhanced User Experience and Customer Satisfaction

    One of the most significant aspects of a modern online advertising campaign is to provide an enhanced user experience and ensure customer satisfaction. Achieving these goals often involves several factors, such as showing relevant and timely ads, reducing ad fatigue and annoyance, and supporting the decision-making process.

    By focusing on these aspects, advertisers can make a lasting impression on potential customers and foster a sense of trust and brand loyalty.

    Showing Relevant and Timely Ads

    When individuals browse the internet, they often come across advertisements that are either irrelevant or poorly timed. This can be frustrating and counterproductive, as it often leads to user dissatisfaction and a lack of engagement with the advertisement.

    However, to capitalize on the power of online advertising and foster a sense of connection with their target audience, businesses should aim to show relevant and timely advertisements.

    Relevant advertisements are those that resonate with a user’s interests, needs, and preferences. For instance, if an individual recently searched for fitness equipment or signed up for a gym membership, they may show interest in ads promoting healthy food options or workout gear. To show such relevant ads, advertisers can utilize data-driven targeting methods, such as demographic, behavior, or contextual targeting, which help them choose the correct audience for their ads.

    On the other hand, timely advertisements are displayed when the user is most likely to need the product or service being advertised. Examining historical purchase patterns, browsing behavior, and seasonal trends can help marketers identify the appropriate timing for their ads. Ensuring that the ads are shown at the right time can lead to higher customer satisfaction and increased revenue for the business.

    Reducing Ad Fatigue and Annoyance

    Ad fatigue occurs when an individual is repeatedly exposed to the same ads, resulting in decreased engagement and lower overall ad effectiveness. Reducing ad fatigue is essential to enhance user experience and achieving customer satisfaction. Marketers can mitigate ad fatigue by implementing frequency capping, a practice that limits the number of times a user is exposed to the same ad during a specific period.

    Another effective strategy could be creating a diverse range of ad creatives that convey the same message differently, ensuring the content remains fresh and engaging.

    Ad annoyance, another factor that can negatively impact user experience, stems from the intrusive nature of certain ads like pop-ups or auto-playing video ads with sound. To combat ad annoyance, marketers should adhere to best practices by using non-intrusive ad formats and avoiding disruptive ad placement. Striking a balance between visibility and user experience can significantly increase customer satisfaction.

    Supporting the Decision-Making Process

    Online advertisements can play a significant role in supporting the decision-making process of potential customers. By providing valuable information and addressing common concerns, businesses can enhance user experience and help potential customers make an informed buying decisions.

    One effective method of supporting the decision-making process is by providing user-generated content like reviews, testimonials, and ratings. These elements add authenticity and credibility to advertisements, inspiring trust in potential customers. Furthermore, using clear calls-to-action (CTAs), marketers can guide users toward specific actions they would like them to take, such as signing up for a newsletter or making a purchase.

    Another essential aspect of supporting the decision-making process is being transparent about pricing, delivery options, and return policies. Providing this information upfront can alleviate users’ concerns, thereby increasing the likelihood of a successful conversion.

    In conclusion, the key factors that contribute to an enhanced user experience and increased customer satisfaction include showing relevant and timely ads, reducing ad fatigue and annoyance, and supporting the decision-making process. By addressing these factors, businesses can create a positive online advertising experience and achieve greater success in their marketing endeavors.

    Measuring and Analyzing Performance

    Measuring and analyzing performance are essential aspects of digital marketing success. It is crucial to monitor the effectiveness of your campaigns periodically. This helps you identify areas of improvement, optimize your strategies, and achieve better results. Tracking your success through Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and metrics can provide you with concrete data you need to make informed decisions.

    Tracking Metrics and KPIs

    Metrics and KPIs are quantitative values used to measure the progress and success of marketing campaigns. Tracking these can help you identify the performance of your campaigns and show you where areas for improvement may be needed.

    Conversions and Conversion Rates

    Conversions refer to desired outcomes on your website, such as sales, signups, or leads generated. Conversion rate is the percentage of visitors who complete a desired action or achieve a goal out of the total number of visitors. A high conversion rate often indicates a successful campaign, as it signifies that visitors are engaged and taking the desired actions on your site.

    Click-Through Rates and Cost per Click

    Click-through rate (CTR) measures how frequently your ads are clicked relative to the number of impressions they receive. A higher CTR indicates that ads are resonating with your target audience, leading to more engagement. Cost per click (CPC) is the average amount you pay for each click on your ads.

    Monitoring CPC and CTR can help you gauge the effectiveness and cost-efficiency of your campaigns and make necessary adjustments to improve performance.

    Return on Ad Spend

    Return on ad spend (ROAS) measures the amount of revenue generated for every dollar spent on advertising. This metric is especially important in evaluating the effectiveness of your advertising efforts, as it considers both the costs associated with advertising and the revenue generated as a result.

    A high ROAS indicates that your marketing campaigns are generating a strong return on investment (ROI) and are likely generating a profit.

    Optimizing Retargeting Campaigns

    Retargeting campaigns are a powerful way to re-engage visitors who have previously interacted with your website or content. By optimizing these campaigns, you can achieve better results in terms of engagement, conversions, and ROI.

    A/B Testing and Iterative Learning

    A/B testing involves comparing the performance of two variants of an ad, landing page, or another campaign element to identify which produces better results. By consistently testing and analyzing results, you can make data-driven decisions and iterate on campaign elements to continually improve performance.

    Adjusting Bids and Budgets

    Optimizing your bid strategy and budget allocation can significantly impact the success of your retargeting campaigns. Monitoring performance and adjusting bids and budgets based on campaign data can help you balance costs and maximize conversions.

    Refining Audience Segments

    Effective retargeting campaigns rely on the ability to target relevant audience segments accurately. By continually analyzing and refining audience targeting based on engagement and conversion data, you can improve the effectiveness of your campaigns and reach more qualified prospects who are likely to convert.

    In summary, regularly measuring and analyzing your campaign performance is vital to making informed decisions and optimizing your digital marketing strategies. You can maximize your marketing efforts and achieve better results by tracking metrics and KPIs, optimizing retargeting campaigns, and applying data-driven insights.

    Benefits in Retargeting – FAQs

    1. What are the primary advantages of retargeting in digital marketing?

    Retargeting offers benefits such as increased brand exposure, improved conversion rates, and minimized advertising costs. By focusing ads on previously engaged users, marketers can achieve a higher return on investment and produce more sales from their audience.

    2. How does retargeting contribute to brand exposure and recognition?

    Through retargeting, businesses can repeatedly display ads to users who have shown prior interest in their products or services. This continuous exposure helps to keep the brand top-of-mind and increases the probability that users will recall and eventually purchase from the brand.

    3. In what ways can retargeting improve conversion rates?

    Retargeting targets users who have already expressed interest in a product or service, resulting in a more personalized and relevant advertising experience. By delivering tailored ads to potential customers, businesses can enhance trust, generate interest, and ultimately boost the likelihood of converting those users into buyers.

    4. How does retargeting influence customer retention and loyalty?

    Through personalized advertising, retargeting can positively impact customer retention by re-engaging and nurturing past website visitors. Businesses can maintain contact with users by continuously presenting relevant offers or reminders, deepening the relationship and fostering customer loyalty.

    5. Can retargeting lead to cost-effective advertising campaigns?

    Retargeting strategies generally result in lower Cost Per Acquisition (CPA) and higher Return on Ad Spend (ROAS). By narrowing the target audience to individuals who have already engaged, businesses can allocate their budget more efficiently and achieve better overall ad performance.

    6. What effect does retargeting have on cross-selling or upselling opportunities?

    Retargeting allows businesses to effectively promote complementary products or services to users who have made prior purchases. Retargeting can drive cross-selling and upselling by highlighting related offerings or higher-tier options, ultimately increasing overall revenue.

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    Hanson Cheng

    About the author

    Living in Portugal with my wife and puppies.
    Scaling online businesses and sharing lessons learned on this website and in our email newsletter.

    Always happy to hear from you, so find me on Instagram if you want to say hi!

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