Does remarketing work?

A pushy sales assistant who runs after a customer as they head out the door can be an asset – or a liability. In online marketing, the equivalent of the chase-down sale is remarketing: a technological marvel that lets you target online advertisements at people you already know have visited your website.

What is remarketing?

Remarketing is the practise of targeting adverts or offers at customers who have already visited your  business. It’s not a new idea – companies have been targeting former customers since before they had stamps to put on their letters. However, the internet age has given the process a new twist: you can now create adverts that follow visitors to your site as they browse other websites. Thanks to tools like Google’s remarketing suite, you may even be able to advertise your brand to customers visiting your competitor’s site.

The technology that allows online remarketing

Web browsers store data about users visits to sites (“cookies”). Advertising services, like Google’s Display Network that are present on multiple websites can track visitors from one to the other. They can also gather bits of information about those visitors behaviour. For example, if someone visits your site and goes to a certain product page but never gets to the ‘buy now’ page, it’s pretty clear they didn’t buy anything. A good remarketing campaign can use this information to throw attactive offers in their way as they continue to browse. For example, you might throw up an ad about a 2-for-1 deal you’ve got, or highlight a similar product in case that tempts them.

Spend your ad money on the right people

Remarketing lets you target people who have already indicated an interest in your business. Sure, a few people might wind up on your site by accident, and not really be interested in what they see, but most will arrive through a genuine need or desier for your product. If they click away without buying, remarketing gives you a chance to showcase offers or products they might not have spotted themselves, as well as reminding them that your brand and business exist. It’s a great way to cement your presence in their mind – even if they’re not consciously aware of your adverts, and don’t return to buy that day, week or month.

Check your results

Not all remarketing campaigns are created equal, so it’s critical that you monitor a new campaign closely, as you would any other marketing spend. Modern ad networks provide analytic tools as standard, so you can easily see which campaigns are getting a good ROI (return on investment) and which are underperforming. Data is typically updated daily so you don’t need to wait or invest huge sums in a remarketing campaign. This is great news as it lets you take more risks and experiment more freely, drawing in greater returns. By updating and adjusting your offers and ads until you find one that works you can turn lost visitors into genuine customers.


If you are based in Portsmouth, Hampshire or surrounding areas and would like to discuss how to manage social media for your business, view our portfolio or make contact with our web design and digital marketing team. We really like to talk.

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