I was in the market for a new set of sunglasses recently. I'm the kind of buyer who is very cost conscious and likes to do a lot of research and comparison before making any purchase decision. I take notes and read reviews. 

Like the vast majority of online shoppers, I headed over to Google to begin my research. I visited several sites, comparing prices for the particular brand and style I was after. Having got an idea for the average prices offered by various stores, I left to mull over my options. 

The next day, while visiting an online news site, I noticed an ad from one of the sites I had visited the day before. Not only had I never seen any ads from this company before, they were using an image of the exact same brand and style of sunglasses that I had been researching. Throughout the day I noticed the ad appear on a several different websites while surfing the net. 

Later that evening, I jumped onto Facebook to post a link to a funny YouTube video, when right there in my newsfeed was another ad for the site, this time offering me free shipping on sunglasses. I obliged. Here is a perfect example of the power of remarketing. I had visited several websites with comparable prices, but in the end I went with the company that delivered highly customised ads and offers in the period immediately following my initial visit to their website. 

Business-Remarketing

Businesses spend a lot of money on driving traffic to their websites, but the fact is that the vast majority of people will not take action on their initial visit. Remarketing allows you to maximise your ROI on all marketing campaigns, both digital and traditional, by re-targeting those users who have previously visited your site and are clearly interested in your products or services, but have not immediately made a purchase or taken the desired action.

How It Works

The remarketing process is quite straight forward. Every time someone visits your website, regardless of the referral source, a "cookie" is placed on the user's device. These users are then added to a remarketing "list" or "audience" allowing you to target these users on sites within the Google Display Network (GDN) or on Facebook. 

The GDN is a network of websites serving Google ads in exchange for a percentage of click revenue. It includes several popular and high-traffic sites such as The Age and Herald Sun. According to comScore, the GDN has a 92.2% reach of Australian internet users and generates 12.3 million unique visits each month. Chances are you will be able to reach most users on your remarketing lists via the GDN. There are a number of customisable options. 

Advertisers can specify for how long after the initial visit a user remains on the remarketing list - the default duration being 30 days. Purchase decisions may take longer for certain products and services and so increasing this duration will ensure that the advertiser's brand is always front of mind. Advertisers can also cap the number of times an ad appears to a unique user per day. It is also best practice to exclude users who have already made a purchase or taken action.

Why You Need It

In an increasingly competitive landscape, maximising ROI on your digital marketing spend is key to staying afloat. Remarketing is perhaps the best way to boost your ROI. When you run marketing campaigns, some portion of your target market will not have a need for your product or service leading to inefficiency in your marketing spend. 

The difference with remarketing is that you are only targeting users who have visited your site and are likely to be qualified. If you think about the classic digital marketing funnel visualisation - users enters at the top of the funnel, filtering out at each step of your conversion process with only a small percentage completing your goal. 

Remarketing effectively allows you to recapture users who have fallen out of the funnel, ultimately decreasing the number of users lost at each stage of your conversion process. Unsurprisingly, conversion rates and ROI for remarketing campaigns tend to be far superior to any other marketing activity and I have not come across any business that would not benefit from a properly executed remarketing campaign. 

So what are you waiting for? As you read this, potential customers are leaving your website, never to return.