Remarketing: Bring customers back in through the out door

Many website owners face the common frustrations of bounce rate and cart abandonment. What makes a prospect turn and walk out that digital door? Did they not find what they need? Is the site difficult to navigate? Or is the checkout process confusing?

We tweak our content. We make buttons bigger and bolder. We do everything we can to encourage click-through, and yet the questions remain.

The good news is that there’s a unique way to reconnect with those same prospects and customers. In fact, you probably encounter it every day without realizing it.

Remarketing and retargeting: interchangeable digital marketing buzzwords and techniques that have grown in frequency and utility in recent years.

Remarketing reaches existing and potential customers through two different avenues.

Remarketing via digital advertising

Remarketing is an attempt to bring customers back to the site to complete an action (e.g., fill out a form or purchase an item).

One remarketing process businesses use to reconnect with potential customers is by targeting those who have visited their website previously. Remarketing uses cookies on your website to earmark visitors. How you choose to remarket will depend on what actions are taken on the site and which conversions you’re seeking.

Let’s say you’re shopping for a Tommy Bahama beach chair online. You browse their website and find one you like, adding it to your online shopping cart. But then, life finds a way to distract you. You close your laptop and leave your desk.

Later on the couch you’re browsing Facebook or Instagram, and there it is: the chair you meant to order, smack in the middle of your feed in a carousel ad. You hop back on their site and order that beach chair. This is online remarketing.

Remarketing’s popularity and effectiveness is well-established at this point. A 2016 Search Engine Journal study found that 91 percent of industry specialists surveyed used remarketing and considered it to be an effective technique. The potential benefits are plentiful, including precise targeting to customers who have already shown interest, better ROI, and improved conversion rates.

Similarly, Adobe’s CMO found that in an evaluation of strategies providing a lift in search activity, retargeting represented the highest lift in trademark search behavior at 1,046 percent.

Platforms for remarketing through display advertising include AdRoll, Perfect Audience, Google AdWords, and Retargeter.

Remarketing via email

In this style of remarketing, businesses leverage the actions of a user on your website after s/he opens an initial email, then sends timely and relevant email communications related to this behavior after the fact.

Similar to our aforementioned Tommy Bahama chair shopping example, let’s say a potential customer comes to your site and adds an item to her cart without completing the purchase. An email is then sent after a certain amount of time to remind her that she has not finished the process, with a special link inviting this person to return to the website at a point near where she exited.

Email Remarketing

Credit: @Webtrends

Other examples include:

  • remarketing through email to users who browse the site and leave,
  • post-purchase emails with other product suggestions and surveys on the experience,
  • rewards and loyalty program follow ups, or
  • reaching out to former customers who have gone MIA.

Platforms for email marketing management and remarketing include WebTrends, MailChimp, Constant Contact, AWeber and GetResponse. You might also opt for a robust marketing automation service like VBOUT, Marketo or Hubspot. We highly recommend having a professional on-hand to help you navigate these systems and ensure that it’s set up properly, tied to strategy, and firing in just the way it should.

Looking for suggestions on how to get started and harness the power of remarketing? Drop us a line.

Management consultant and brand strategist for small teams. Fan of dark tea, thick books, peace, and unity.

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