What is Retargeting and Why Does Your Business Need It?

What is Retargeting and Why Does Your Business Need It?

Content Writer: Tomas Pedrozo Tomas Pedrozo Blog Contributor

Tell me if this thought process sounds familiar: “I know people are coming to my website and even spending a good amount of time on it, but then they leave without submitting a form or giving me a call. I’m not sure if they’ll ever come back. Am I doing something wrong?"

This problem is a common one. And you’re probably not doing anything wrong. Approximately 98 percent of website visitors don’t convert the first time they visit. You want visitors to engage with your website and ultimately become customers. However, visitors are likely not staying on your website long enough to do much of anything. 

According to HubSpot, 55 percent of visitors are spending less than 15 seconds on your website. That doesn’t give you much of a window to convert. Visitors are bailing for a variety of reasons – they’re window shopping, comparing prices, distracted by Facebook, etc. This leaves you left to wonder if they will remember you. It can be a lot like speed dating.

So what do you do? How do you create a lasting impression?
With the power of retargeting ads, you can keep the spark alive! Retargeting ads allow you to market to past visitors of your website without them actually being on your site. In fact, the ads will run on other websites with similar keywords and categories.

How does retargeting work?

First, you must add a retargeting code to your website. With this added, a small piece of JavaScript code is attached to a visitor's browser when they visit your site. This is called a cookie. You use these cookies to build a retargeting list. Once your list is big enough (Google AdWords requires 100 visitors to be on your list), you can start retargeting.

Now, after visitors leave your website and are browsing other ones, your ads will be marketed directly to them via Google’s Display Network, a collection of websites that show AdWords ads. These ads are a clickable link back to your website. Make sense? Here's an illustration of the process:

retargeting cycle.png

Let’s look at an example. You’re in real estate and perspective homebuyer lands on your website (perhaps from another paid ad). They browse your site for a future home. They’re interested in a few, but for one reason or another they leave your site before writing down your business name or bookmarking any pages. Without retargeting, there’s a serious chance this visitor may never make it back to your site. Fortunately, your retargeting code is in place so you can now market directly to them, creating an easy course back to you.

Why is retargeting important?

The idea of retargeting is pretty simple, so why is it so essential? There are three main reasons:

1. Targeted Exposure to Warm Prospects

With retargeting, your ads are placed in front of warm prospects who you know are interested in your business. Think about it. They visited your site because they’re looking for a product or service you offer. Why not remain on their radar and on their screen as long as they’re interested? To remain top-of-mind in any highly competitive industry is not only beneficial, it’s essential.

2. Increased Website Traffic

No one has ever said, “I want less traffic to my website,” so why should you? Retargeting offers another avenue for visitors to come back to your site without the aid of a search engine search engine. This makes it easy for someone to say, “Hey, I remember them! I really liked what they had to offer!”

3. It's Actually Pretty Cheap

Here’s the kicker! On average, the cost-per-click (CPC) of a retargeting ad is substantially less than your standard search ads. In fact, I’ve seen some industries where the CPC for search ads is more than $20 and retargeting ads are operating at less than $1 per click! This means that you receive a targeted click from a interested prospect at five percent the expense of a typical search ad. This makes the return on investment substantially higher, which is always a good thing.

Adding retargeting to your paid advertising campaign can keep your business top-of-mind at a fraction of the cost. It’s a simple wrinkle in your marketing campaign that introduces a new way to get in front of your prospects.