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Have you ever visited a website (let’s say to look at the latest items they had to offer… then later you visit another website (let’s say and you see ads showing up for Best Buy?

That's called Google retargeting, and Best Buy is wisely using it to market its products to you.

It's a simple yet effective advertising strategy. And your business also needs to be using it for your website visitors.

Actually... allow me to rephrase that with a greater imperative: if you aren’t doing Google retargeting, you are throwing away an enormous opportunity to grow your business at a very affordable cost.

Why? Well, in a nutshell, the benefits of Google retargeting include:

  • More leads
  • More customers / clients
  • A lower cost per lead
  • A higher ROI for your limited marketing dollars

Who doesn’t want all of that?

How Google Retargeting Works

Retargeting is a smart way to stay connected with visitors to your website who may not have made an immediate purchase or who have not yet provided you with their contact information for subsequent follow-up.

Here’s how it works: When someone visits your website, Google (Bing and Facebook can do this, too) will tag the visitor so that as they browse other websites online, they will be served your company’s ads – typically for the next 30-90 days.

This revolutionary method of advertising can be an absolute game changer for your business! To better flesh this topic out, below we have 6 powerful reasons why you should be using Google retargeting as part of your strategy: 

1. Prospects usually don’t respond on their first visit.

If someone visits your website and buys something, opts to subscribe to your newsletter, or downloads a white paper and gives you their email address in exchange… that's great! Now you can continue to engage them via email, hopefully leading to a sale down the road.

But, according to Google, that's only about 1-4% of your website visitors. What about the other 96% who remain invisible to you? Why not stay on their radar and keep your brand top-of-mind as they continue looking for other online content?

Your website visitors are on a buyer’s journey, moving from “just looking” to the consideration stage (evaluating options head to head), and finally onto the decision stage. The length of this journey can last anywhere from several days to many months or even years, depending on your industry. In fact, the average website visitor can have up to 7-8 interactions with your business before they become a client or customer.

What's more, in this content saturated world filled with busy people, it's very easy for prospects to get distracted while perusing your website even if you offer the most compelling user experience, product or service. With Google retargeting, you can easily stay in front of your target prospects (and even positively influence them) while they're taking the time to figure things out.

Bottom line: You’ve heard the expression “the squeaky wheel gets the grease?” Well, the business that most consistently engages with the prospect usually gets the sale. Retargeting is an excellent way to increase brand awareness while your prospect works through the lengthy buyer’s journey.

2. You can go beyond awareness to engagement. 

Yes, by all means, stay on your prospect’s radar. But, with retargeting you can and must go further.

I want you to think about walking into a store, looking around and being helped by two different sales people. As you leave and go about your day (or week), you periodically run across these two sales people while getting something to eat or filling up your gas tank.

Every time you see the first sales person, he says, “Hey, don’t forget about our store!”

Meanwhile, the second sales person says, “Here's some additional information about the problem you're dealing with. I hope that makes a difference. Take care!” Each time you run into this person, they offer you (in a non-pushy way) more information that is truly helpful for you as you make your decision.

Which is more likely to get the sale?

Remember, your website can operate like an automated salesperson… helpfully engaging the prospect while they consider their options.

However, let’s take this helpful engagement one step further.

With retargeting, you can even tag people visiting specific pages (indicative of what they might be interested in learning more about). Then, you can follow up by serving those visitors with content relevant to those particular pages.

For example, we have one client whose product is used by businesses in a broad variety of industries. They're currently running a retargeting campaign specifically targeting visitors to their website who are interested in manufacturing content. If someone clicks to view one of their pages or blog posts related to manufacturing, the visitor is specifically tagged so they will only see manufacturing related ads with content their likely to perceive as more valuable.

They are going beyond general awareness (“don’t forget us!”) and even general engagement (“here’s information on solutions we provide to problems faced by businesses in general”) to interacting with specific visitors in ways that are highly targeted (and valuable) given the problems they face. This leads to a higher response rateand more sales per 100 website visitors.

Bottom line: Retargeting allows you to consistently engage visitors with relevant information, leading to a higher percentage of visitors who turn into buyers.

3. The benefit of retargeting to you is greater than the cost. 

Retargeting is a form of pay-per-click advertising. That means you pay nothing until someone clicks on your ad. Think of it as someone ringing your door bell and indicating they’d like to see what you offer. That is worth paying for!

But, you get the benefit of your ads even if they don’t click on it. Typically, less than 1% of the time, your ads are clicked on by previous visitors to your website. But, you get the cumulative benefit of your ad being seen but not clicked on… all for free.

And who doesn’t want free advertising that is repeatedly seen by highly relevant prospects?

Even better, those who do (finally) respond don’t necessarily click on your ad (costing you money) but simply go back to your website because they have been there before and know who you are. That’s free, returning traffic!

Bottom line: Retargeting brings one of two outcomesfree brand awareness advertising to the right people or someone wanting to engage with you further. Either way, you benefit.

4. The retargeting cost per re-visit or lead is extremely low.

Paying for clicks on Google often can get very expensive (typically $5 to $50 or more). But, retargeting clicks are typically under a $1.

Combining this low cost per click with the previous point (99% of the time your ads are seen but not clicked on) means you are paying very little, but getting great exposure to highly relevant eyeballs who have already shown interest in you by visiting your website. 

Bottom line: The cost to get a visitor to return to your website is very, very low.

5. The retargeting ROI can often be much better than your regular online lead generation efforts.

Just as a warm prospect converts at a higher rate than a cold one, retargeting brings you warm visitors, who become leads and customers at a much higher rate. The higher the conversion rate, the lower the cost per conversion.

For example, Kimberly-Clark indicates it is seeing 50 to 60 percent higher conversion rates among consumers who have been retargeted than those who have not. 

Google noted the company Watchfinder (a pre-owned watch retailer) noticed less than 1% of their website visitors were making a purchase on their first visit to the site. They invested in retargeting and, within six months, their return on investment was 1,300%. They also increased their average onsite order value by 13%. Plus, their cost-per-ad was 34% lower than their other non-brand search campaigns.

Bottom line: You can get more leads and customers at a lower cost per conversion using retargeting.

6. There is ample opportunity to increase revenue by cross-selling and up-selling.

When someone visits, or revisits your website, you can show them ads for things related to what they were looking at originally. This is especially powerful for website visitors who are already customers.

There are several ways you can specifically target existing customers, and then serve them ads for products and services related to or even the next level up from what they initially purchased.

For example, if someone buys a product, you can serve them ads featuring accessories that go with that product. These additional cross-selling efforts would cost you very little but nicely boost your revenue.

Or, if you offer certain services, you can serve them ads for the premium services you offer. For example, if they purchased the bronze package, you can invite them to upgrade to the silver or gold package. Typically, a modest percentage will upgrade. Again, this is money normally left on the table that is now being claimed at a very low cost (with a high-ticket value).

Bottom line: You can generate additional and/or higher revenue sales using retargeting.

The Power of Google Retargeting for Your Business

Larry Kim, WordStream Founder and CTO, says retargeting is “a gentle, regular reminder to your website visitors, one that encourages people to finish what they started, while reinforcing your branding and messaging to that user every time they see you around.”

Let the power of your 24/7 automated sales person work for you to increase leads and customers at an extremely affordable cost.

Want to try retargeting… but you're not sure where to start? Contact us here at PMG! We can help you determine your next steps.


About the Author

Patrick McDaniel | Paid Search & Social Strategist
Patrick McDaniel, Paid Search & Social Strategist

Patrick McDaniel is PMG’s Paid Search and Social Strategist. He likes figuring out how people work – in between facts and figures on organic search rankings, lead gen and engagement techniques, you’ll find hints of psychology and buying behavior in his writing. He loves helping readers understand how to reach and connect with their best prospects!

 Tags: Paid Search & Social

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