Retargeting and remarketing campaigns are often used interchangeably. However, they are two different strategies with separate goals and channels.
Three Retargeting Strategies
1. Product page
Goal: Capture attention, encourage conversions.
Product page retargeting is the simplest way to profit from your advertising efforts. It involves getting people who’ve visited your store and looked at actual products back to buy them.
These ads work better in shorter windows. For example, if someone visited a specific page in the past three days, they are more likely to buy versus someone who visited in the past 30 days.
The product page retargeting ad below, by skin care brand BOOM! by Cindy Joseph, has a few key elements that grab viewers attention:
- Compelling text. The ad tells readers about what’s going on below. It also features a customer review and highlights key ingredients the viewer values.
- Square image. A square image takes up more room on mobile than rectangular images, which can stop someone mid-scroll.
Call to action. BOOM! by Cindy Joseph pulls relevant information from the previously viewed product into the call-to-action box, with a Shop Now CTA button to encourage clicks.
The more recently someone visited your site, the more likely they are to buy.
2. Homepage and Collection page
Goal: Remind shoppers you exist, build brand affinity.
One common retargeting strategy is showing ads to people who’ve visited your homepage or collection page. These ads are different from product page ads because the viewers have never seen a product.
You don’t want to focus on product benefits with homepage or collection page retargeting ads. Instead, you want to remind them that you’re a great brand to do business with.
These ads are beneficial because they:
- Remind potential customers that you exist
- Build trust by letting potential customers know other customers love buying from you (“social proof”)
- Make them feel good about your brand
- Show off your products and compel them to click
- Have a strong call to action
Look at how BOOM! By Cindy Joseph approaches homepage and collection page ads. Firestone explains how the ad is, “focused around social proof and how other customers like us, and we’re worth doing business with or we’re worth considering because there’s a whole bunch of people who think we’re cool.”
One of the most powerful things you can do as a brand is remind people that you share similar viewpoints to them.
3. Add to cart
Goal: Recover lost sales.
Cart abandonment is a huge challenge for ecommerce entrepreneurs. According to the Baymard Institute, 69.82% of people will put a product in their cart, but not check out. People who add items to their carts have strong intent to buy, so you want to recapture those sales.
Cart abandoners are a great group to retarget because they are far along in your conversion funnel. Sometimes all they need is a nudge and an incentive, like free shipping or a discount on their abandoned items.
We want to get them [cart abandoners] back. We don’t just want to get them back to any old product page. We want to show them the actual products that were in their shopping cart when they abandoned. We want to retarget them with the products that they actually have added to the cart.
To help you get started, out marketing team experts have come up with value of retargeting and how you can set up your first campaigns.
Use ads to build audiences
When you want to encourage people to buy from your store again, it can be easy to focus on that singular goal: Get more sales.
However, there’s a lot you can do to retarget your buyers earlier on in the purchase process, and we recommend ads in the context of your entire marketing strategy.
“One way to keep people engaged after a purchase is to show a retargeting ad that encourages them to opt-in to your newsletter,” says Team. “You’d create a retargeting ad that says something like, “Hey, here’s all the cool stuff we send out in our newsletter. If you subscribe alongside the 50,000 other people on our list, you’ll get access to all this cool stuff.”
There’s a lot you can do to retarget your buyers early on in the purchase process.
You can easily identify everyone who has completed an order if you have a Facebook pixel on your site, with no need to rely on the email address they used to complete their purchase. From there, you can set up a Facebook ad reminding them that your newsletter is a great way to stay in touch.
“Don’t always feel the need to get somebody to buy something,” advises Reza. “You can use a retargeting campaign to get them to sign up to your email list, because then it’s free for you to reach out to them anytime you want.”
However, you’re not done once that customer is signed up for your list, since they’ve yet to hit Buy Now on their second order.
Think beyond the inbox
Even as your email list grows, it’s not a magic bullet on its own. We have seen firsthand that email marketing works best when working in tandem with a retargeting campaign, and strongly advises using them together to build more effective campaigns.
Email is always a great channel, but even when people have opted into your list, sometimes your emails wind up in the Promotions tab, and people won’t see it.
“Even when people get the email and open it, there's a lot of value in reinforcing that message through retargeting. Because they might see the email, but they're on the go and they forget to act on it. If you’re retargeting them, later they might see a video ad on Instagram that has the same messaging as the email and say, ‘Oh right, I knew I wanted to buy that.’”
Pairing these efforts is what’s known as a multi-touch campaign, where you communicate a consistent message to a target customer across different touchpoints. If you haven’t run a paid ad before, you can simplify your first retargeting campaign by taking the following steps (or using Shoelace, which automates this process for you).
- When you’re sending an email campaign, translate the content to fit the format of a Facebook or Instagram ad.
- Set up your new ad to run just after the email goes out and test out how it performs to different target audiences.
- If you want to hit just your email list with a retargeting ad, you can upload the list of emails to your ad platform, and if they use the same email in both places, you can show the ad directly to them.
- You could also target the ad to all previous purchasers if you’re using a Facebook pixel.
Start small, and know your margins
Your best source of learning will come from getting some skin in the game and actually running a few ads. That’s why even seasoned pros will start small to test the waters when they’re running new campaigns. We advise starting with an understanding of your profit margins to make sure you’re not going over budget.
There are a lot of variables when you run Facebook ads. “Starting out, be sure to set a small daily or lifetime budget with conversions as the objective. A lot of marketers will also set a bid cap per conversion, but doing this requires knowing what your margins are. If your average cart size is 1,000฿ what are you comfortable spending to get that order? This can take a bit of time to figure out the sweet spot—you want to maximize conversions without overspending to get them. Maybe it's 100฿ per conversion, maybe it's 200฿. Each retailer will be different.”
Your best source of learning will come from getting some skin in the game and actually running a few ads.
To put advice into action, it’s time to take a look at your business’s budget to understand your profit margins. In simple terms, your profit margin is your sale price, minus all of the expenses you incur to produce the product. That can include:
- Fixed expenses, like your internet, hosting, and cellphone bills
- Variable expenses, like the cost of materials to create your products
- One-time expenses, like a laptop or camera
When you start running paid ads, you’re adding a variable expense to the mix. It’s important to know your numbers ahead of time so you ensure you won’t be selling at a loss.
There’s no quick-and-easy way to find your profit margins without first knowing what’s happening with your business’s money.
As a business owner, you may be aware of the importance of reaching potential customers who have already interacted with your brand or website. This is where remarketing and retargeting come in.
At Stars Commerce, we offer remarketing and retargeting services to help businesses reach these potential customers and increase conversions. Our team of experts can help you create targeted ads that speak to your audience's interests and needs, and deliver them across multiple channels, including social media, email, and display advertising.