retargeting ads
Remarketing flat isometric vector concept. A man pushing an AD on the web page and gets the same advertising banner on all types of devices for internet access.

Retargeting: definition

Online advertisements are today the basis of many 2.0 business models. However, did you know that not all advertising content hits the mark. In many cases, advertisers are required to carry out remarketing, also called retargeting. What are the secrets of this retargeting and how to carry it out? Below are the answers to the questions you may ask yourself.

Retargeting: what is it?

Retargeting relies on trackers present here and there to improve the targeting of its advertising campaigns. This involves measuring the public’s interest in an advertisement and then reaching this same audience again on other places of interaction such as social networks. The objective here is to confront a consumer with an offer several times to increase the chances of conversion.

In this area, several actions make it possible to collect signals. An Internet user who clicks on an advertisement, searches launched on social networks or even watching a video can panic the trackers and trigger retargeting. A solution that can ultimately lead to a sale.

How does retargeting work from the point of view of Internet users?

With retargeting, advertisers will have their targets worn out. Once this is implemented, advertisements highlighting a specific product will appear on the sites that the principal concerned will usually visit. So, you will find these advertisements on Facebook, on the forums that you enjoy reading or even on the newspapers that you read online.

Such a practice may seem aggressive and intrusive. However, the advertisements broadcast correspond to an interest expressed by the principal concerned. As indicated above, this interest can correspond to the time we spent looking for the latest pair of trendy sneakers. Since the advertisements respond to a very real need, retargeting is quite well received by the public.

For consumers looking for a good deal, this practice represents a real godsend. They may come across an offer that they accidentally missed by closing the wrong tab or by letting themselves be distracted by a video that is creating a buzz.

Under these conditions, retargeting also acts as a booster shot for the most distracted or hesitant. According to statistics, these targeted advertisements receive ten times more clicks than traditional advertising content. Purchasing intentions are even stronger among Internet users who are already familiar with the brand or product being promoted.

For e-retailers, retargeting is an opportunity to seize. Remember that as a general rule the conversion rate of a store is around 3%. Thanks to retargeting, consumers will be confronted many times with the products that interest them. Enough to increase the conversion rate.

This is also an interesting solution to protect against oversights that prevent a sale. It is common for buyers to be discreet when making an online purchase. The product has been placed in the basket, but the transaction has not been finalized. Retargeting can help the seller recall purchases awaiting confirmation.

How profitable is retargeting?

Although we do not have precise statistics on the issue, no one can ignore the potential of retargeting. As mentioned above, the conversion rate of a site is around 3%. The process allows the remaining 97% to be recovered. Of course, not all advertisements will hit the mark, but the e-retailer can recover a certain proportion of the audience that he should lose.

Retargeting also provides the means to optimize the results of your efforts in everything related to digital communication. This way, you will be able to better leverage your SEO strategy or your SEA campaigns. Your visibility will have even more impact on your sales. Each meeting place with Internet users will thus make it possible to measure the public’s interest in a product with a view to sending them targeted advertising.

According to specialists, an advertisement is in practice only effective after 6 viewings. Retargeting is used precisely to multiply these views and therefore to boost the income of e-retailers. In terms of campaign costs, this solution also provides ways to make savings. We know, for example, that a campaign via the Google display network has a lower cost per click than an SEA campaign. Retargeting will sometimes allow you to automatically move from an advertising banner on the SERPs to banners displayed on display network sites. Enough to reduce the cost of your campaigns.

How to set up retargeting?

Retargeting relies on the distribution channels you have available. To date, advertisers can rely on the advertising networks of Google and the Meta group (Facebook and Instagram). They can also rely on platforms such as Critéo or AdRoll.

Regardless, retargeting is a form of paid advertising. Firstly, the manager must then define his objectives, whether to strengthen the brand image of the establishment, increase sales or even encourage registration for an event or the newsletter. Once this step has been completed, you still need to establish a budget, define your target and indicate a precise geographical area or language.

Many details still need to be resolved, including targeted keywords, visuals and even landing pages. Depending on the distribution channels you choose, you will need to ensure that the trackers are properly set up. If you want to deploy your strategy on Facebook, check beforehand that the pixel has been integrated. We will also take care to exclude Internet users who have already ordered the item or subscribed to the offer. A small detail that can cost you dearly afterwards.

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Although you have different retargeting platforms, use one platform at a time. If you launch several campaigns using several platforms, these tools will issue advertising offers to a single agency to position a banner in the same position. Since the positioning of advertisements is based on an auction system, this practice will increase the cost of your campaign since the different platforms will compete. To familiarize yourself with this environment and existing systems, it is best to carry out a test lasting several weeks. In this way, we will be able to accurately evaluate the benefits of this type of approach.

In all cases, your advertisements must impress Internet users even if they do not bother to click on them. To leave a good impression, the team in charge must focus on creative and original visuals. The effort spent to make everything attractive should not hinder the understanding of the message. Also, we will keep the text short for greater clarity. In addition, we will add colors sparingly.

Note that in the context of retargeting, prospects already know the product and the brand to a greater or lesser extent. It is therefore not necessarily necessary to present the company or the article in question. The objective will simply be to confirm a purchase and therefore to remedy any possible sources of hesitation for the person concerned.

In all cases, retargeting provides the means to reach a wide variety of people, ranging from visitors to your showcase site to people who have abandoned their shopping carts to those who have searched for a particular product.

Overview of retargeting platforms

Google Ads display

The Google Display Network is essential for retargeting. It reaches nearly 9 out of 10 Internet users. This advertising distribution channel effectively brings together more than 2 million sites, videos and applications.

On this network, monitoring of Internet users’ behavior is based on cookies. Visitors will receive a tracking cookie. This tracker then communicates with advertisers who may be interested in an advertising space or an opportunity to make a sale. Those who use the Google Display network therefore do not necessarily need to install specific trackers.

As part of setting up a retargeting campaign, the advertiser will be able to define their budget and monitor their daily expenses. Before doing anything, we will link Google Analytics to Google Ads. A process that will allow you to recover the audiences that you have already saved.

An option has been provided to benefit from a preconfigured audience consistent with your field of activity. Through a smart list, you can target all visitors, new visitors, those who have returned to your site, those who have visited a specific page or even those who have already made a purchase.

Then go to Google Adwords to start retargeting. You go to Tools, Shared Library and Audience Management. You will then have access to the “Remarketing and Custom Audiences” tab. We will click on the “+” to target a specific audience, whether it be visitors to your site, your viewers on YouTube or even customers who have forgotten their baskets. You can also add different rules to refine retargeting.

To launch a campaign, go to campaigns and then click on +. We will then let ourselves be guided to configure everything correctly. Once the campaign is launched, wait a few days before evaluating its performance. Don’t hesitate to allocate more budget for your campaign to reach the heights.


For retargeting on Facebook or Instagram, you will first need to ensure that the pixel is in place. As a reminder, this element serves as a tracker and links your website to the Facebook and Instagram network. The pixel will be essential to track visitor behavior and carry out your retargeting.

Fortunately, setting up a pixel has become much simpler. This operation no longer requires special skills. The advertiser must first go to the advertiser manager to access the Business Settings. Once in “Data sources”, all you have to do is click on new pixel to then name the pixel.

You still need to configure the new pixel, but there’s nothing stopping you from putting it off until later. For everything to work correctly, you still need to choose from 3 options to establish the connection. After choosing the right option, the tool will provide you with a piece of code. A piece of code that you must inject into your website. Facebook provides extensive documentation to prevent everyone from making the slightest mistake. The instructions provided will also be useful to you.

Once the pixel is installed correctly, you will already have an overview of your site’s metrics as well as audience insights. Using the available commands, you can already create a personalized audience and then create your campaign.

To enable retargeting, you need to launch a “new ad set” and specify the audience. This audience here will be people who have recently visited your site, buyers who abandoned a shopping cart or even those who clicked on an ad. By setting everything up correctly, you can already benefit from the advantages linked to retargeting.

In conclusion

No matter how much effort you put into promoting your business, the conversion rate remains relatively low. A rate of around 3% which you can nevertheless increase by using retargeting. If many hesitate to implement it, know that there is nothing aggressive about this practice. Quite the contrary! The ads created target people who are already familiar with your products or business. The advertising content broadcast makes it possible to recapture the attention of prospects. In these conditions, nothing prevents you from using this technique. Also, dare to take the plunge to increase sales and make a lasting impression on the minds of consumers. That said, such an approach requires a certain amount of know-how. This is why it is better to surround yourself with a professional team.