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What is Display Ad Retargeting?

What is Display Ad Retargeting?

Written by enCOMPASS Agency

What percentage of your website visitors actually become paying customers? It may be a much lower number than you’d think. According to some studies, only about two percent of website visitors convert on their first visit. Fortunately, there are strategies you can employ to follow up with the other 98 percent, potentially coaxing them to return to your site and complete a transaction.

One of the best-known strategies is what’s known as retargeting. Retargeting is all about “following” the people who’ve visited your site, showing them ads with the intention of getting them back to your business website.

You’ve probably experienced retargeting before, even if you didn’t know what to call it. For example, have you ever looked at a particular product on Amazon.com, left the page, navigated to a different website altogether, and seen ads for the very product you were just browsing? This is a fairly common experience, and a prime example of retargeting. And the fact that businesses as large as Amazon.com employ this tactic suggests just how valuable it can be.

How Site Retargeting Works

On a technical level, retargeting is based on a JavaScript code, which is placed in the footer of your website. This script is what makes it possible for you to “follow” site visitors even when they travel away from your site, something that’s generally accomplished through cookie-based technology. The JavaScript code places anonymous “cookies” in the browsers of your website visitors, which then establishes a running list of the people who’ve visited your site.

This code doesn’t impact the performance of your site, and in fact it will be undetectable to your visitors. When a new visitor comes to your site, assuming they have cookies enabled, the JavaScript code will automatically deposit a browser cookie, enabling you to display retargeting ads that are uniquely geared toward the user and his or her browsing history.

What About Search Retargeting?

So far we’ve been focusing on a particular strain of retargeting… what’s sometimes known as site retargeting. Most of the time, when marketers discuss retargeting, this is what they’re referencing. However, it’s important to note that there are a couple of different kinds of retargeting (search retargeting and site retargeting), and that both of them are important.

Search retargeting serves ads to people based on some of the keywords they’ve searched for. You can set up a campaign based on a particular keywords; so, for example, you can create a list of keywords related to your brand and its product or service offerings, then display retargeting ads to the people who search for those terms. If you own a hair restoration center in Charlotte, NC, you might invest in retargeted ads to people who search for things like “hair loss in Charlotte,” “NC hair restoration,” etc.

Again, we’d make the argument that both kinds of retargeting can be useful, and often, they work best when they operate in tandem. Whether you’re serving display ads based on the product pages people have browsed or the products in their Google search history, you’re using buyer intent to precision-target your advertising.

The Value of Retargeting

Indeed, both site retargeting and search retargeting offer considerable value to your marketing campaign, and for similar reasons.

In both cases, you’re able to serve ads to people who are already familiar with your brand; who have proven their interest in what you’re selling; in some cases, people who have already visited your website. In other words, retargeting allows you to put your ad dollars toward reaching those who you know have some level of need or desire for your product. Sometimes, they may be consumers who just aren’t quite ready to make a purchase. Through retargeting, you can remind them, nudge them, and keep your brand at the forefront of their brains.

More generally, retargeting can help you cultivate brand awareness. Consumers will feel a greater comfort toward and loyalty for your brand as they see it displayed across the Web, in ways that feel thoughtful and personalized.

Managed Retargeting from enCOMPASS

Here at enCOMPASS Agency, we’re happy to offer managed retargeting services for our clients.

As part of this service, we go above and beyond in putting the client’s interests first. We have the technology and the strategic acumen to help detect fraud and save you from any false leads; and, we can deploy display ads intelligently, carefully honing ads based on the user’s online history, demographics, psychology, and more.

We’d love to tell you more about how retargeting works, or how it could benefit your business. We can also speak with you about how retargeting fits into your broader digital marketing portfolio. To start a conversation with us, reach out to the enCOMPASS Agency team whenever you’re ready for a chat.