Acquiring Traffic

How Does Retargeting Actually Work?

Eli Robinson
Friday, October 10 2014

You know that moment when you realize you keep seeing ads for the same company over and over again, no matter what website you visit? Of course you do.

Well, you are getting retargeted!

But now, rather than simply being someone who gets retargeted, you as a franchisor, should be the one that takes advantage of it!

You may find yourself wondering, how something like that could actually work. That’s what we’re here for.

So let’s start with a definition of what retargeting is…

"Retargeting is a form of internet advertising where you reach people who have previously visited your site, but they didn’t convert."

For example, let’s say that someone stopped by your franchise’s website and visited 5 different pages, but they didn’t fill out a lead form. You should feel disappointed because that person may have been the perfect franchisee, but you never got the chance to speak to them. Retargeting gives you the ability to show them an advertisement as they browse around the web, hoping to drive them back to your site and finally convert.

Make sense? If you want further clarification on what retargeting is, shoot us a note and we’d be happy to clarify it further.

So moving on to how it actually works...

The first step to starting a retargeting campaign is to begin to build the pool of people that you can retarget to (in this example, let’s assume you’re going to use Google’s ad network.) The tech challenge becomes inserting a “retargeting tag” into the code of your website. To give you an idea, the tag may look like this:

Google Retargeting Remarketing Sample Code

Looks like gobbledygook, right? Most code does!

So how does it work? When this code is placed on your website, a record of every person who visits that page is going to be sent to Google to be placed in their database of visitors.

Based on how many different types of code you use, you can keep track of things such as when people visited your site, what pages they looked at, and which page they left on.

After letting the pool build for a number of days and weeks, you should have enough people to begin retargeting.

The next step here is thinking about what you want to tell them in a display ad to get them to return to your site.

In another post, we cover a number of different reasons people may have left and then how you may consider retargeting them. Check it out here.

So now it’s time to launch!

Hop into your Google account and launch the appropriate text or display ads, and see what works. Questions you’ll want to ask yourself include:

  • Which ad gets clicked most frequently? (CTR)
  • Which ad leads to me getting the most conversions? (Conversation Rate)
  • Do any of the ads actually lead to me finding my next franchisee?
  • How much do each of the ads cost to serve?
  • Is there additional segmentation that I could do that would allow me to better retarget visitors to my site?
  • Etc.

As you start to accumulate data on the relative effectiveness of the ads, you can become a more and more effective retargeter.

Have any questions about retargeting? Click here to shoot us a question.