How to Successfully Re-Target Potential Customers

Contextual Retargeting is another form of site re-targeting, which is used by a lot of the well known consumer brands.

For the purpose of this tutorial we will take retargeting to be a subset of remarketing and will be focusing on practices arising from the use of cookies and pixels.

Aiming to successfully re-target potential customers should be the goal of any remarketing campaign. Retargeting is all about getting potential customers who have previously visited your site but not made a purchase to come back again and purchase something next time round. Alternatively, they may have previously searched for similar products to yours.  

Retargeting ad campaigns usually run on a lower cost basis as they specifically target an interested audience and therefore retargeting ads can be more effective and improve your the overall ROI.

There are several strategies available to businesses. Depending on your business model, of the various options available to you some will be more appropriate than others. However, as with any successful retargeting campaign, often it is a combination of different strategies that proves to be the best, rather than relying on any one. The only real way to see which works best for your business is to test them out first.

Search Re-targeting

Without doubt this is the most well-known of the strategies on the market, which everyone associates with retargeting. Search re-targeting occurs when customised display ads are triggered and displayed to the potential customer as they browse the internet. Such display ads help to keep your business in front of them on the screen. Search retargeting can therefore be more effective because these types of ad specifically target potential customers' based on their past visits to your site. Search retargeting, which is a form of behavioural retargeting, can also be used to drive new customers that have not been to your site before because they are being retargeted based on actions they have taken whilst browsing other websites.

Personalised retargeting takes this concept one step further and actually allows you to display ads to a potential customer based on their particular browsing habits. This way they are retargeted with an ad featuring the specific products that they previously viewed.

Another means of search re-targeting is Geo-targeting i.e. to have your display ads triggered and displayed based on your potential customer's location, be this by country, county, city or post code etc. That way you only have your retargeting ad displayed to those who live in certain areas or who have previously searched for similar products or services in that location.

Site Re-targeting

The most common way to retarget potential customers is through reaching out to all the visitors to your website. In order to run a retargeting campaign to show ads to people who have previously visited your site, you need to first set up retargeting list. A retargeting list is a collection of cookies or pixels from people who have visited your site. Once this list is in place anyone who visits your website can then see your retargeting ads. You can do this either by creating a retargeting list for all your site pages or for your homepage only or for any other specific page. Also make sure you analyse which areas of your content are the most appealing to your website visitors to help with forward planning of future site content.

As with search re-targeting, Personalised Site re-targeting takes the concept further.
If you first create a retargeting list for all visitors you can then create more advanced retargeting lists by creating sub-divided lists based on a customer’s ear­lier visits, along with data from their mar­ket­ing pro­files, so you can then target them with rel­e­vant and engag­ing con­tent that is of interest specifically to them. You could create display ads for different product categories or different services, with each list using a different URL that contains the name of a different category. This way customers who browse particular products or services will see different ads. For instance, taking an online shoe shop, as an example, you could create retargeting lists for 'children's shoes', 'women's shoes' and 'men's shoes'. That way someone who had previously visited the site looking for women's shoes would only see your ad for women's shoes.

You could also set up a Customised Combination list to help you target potential customers who previously did not convert, as well as another list for those that did. You could also take this one step further if you want to retarget customers who put items in their shopping basket but who did not actually complete the purchase. This way you can set up a retargeting campaign to attract these customers back, so that you have a second opportunity for a sale to be completed.

Contextual Retargeting is another form of site re-targeting, which is used by a lot of the well known consumer brands. Sometimes also referred to as up-selling or cross-selling, this particular type of re-targeting is aimed at those who have either already purchased items and may be interested in complimentary products or services or they may have just clicked on a specific item of interest. If they have clicked on a particular woman's shoe, you may wish to display an ad for handbags or belts that match or complement the colour or style of that shoe. Alternatively, if they purchase a product or service, before they complete the purchase, you may wish to show them ads for other related products that have been purchased by your other customers who made similar purchases.

You can also set up retargeting lists with specific membership durations, so that you can retarget customers who purchased an item within say 30, 60 or 90 days of a purchase.

Email Retargeting

If you have already captured the e-mail addresses of potential new customers because they registered on you site but have not yet bought anything then make sure you follow these contacts up within 24 hours. Make the most of the retargeting lists you have created by making sure your e-mail retargeting campaign is relevant to what they were originally interested in. Take the opportunity to poll them as to why they did not complete a purchase first time round.

For further tips read CGT's related tutorials listed below.

CGT offers a range of flexible internet marketing training courses, including some new online courses, designed to help SME's get to grips with the rapidly changing online marketing scene, including Master Google Adwords (PPC). Contact us TODAY on 01732 833 004 for advice and to discuss your training requirements.

About Us

Computer Graphics Training has been providing skills training, consultancy and design services to a diverse range of companies for over 25 years.