Retargeting and remarketing: what is the difference between them and why are they important marketing tools?

  • Retargeting.

With only 2% of customers converting to a sale on the first-time visit, bounce rates are the bane of every marketer’s existence. If people have already come into contact with your brand – whether by visiting your site, clicking on an ad or filling in a form – it’s easy to market to them. Businesses, obviously, want to reach the 98 % of visitors who didn’t purchase anything the first time around  – this is where remarketing and retargeting come in. Not sure what they are or what their benefits are? Read on and all will become clear!

What is retargeting?

Retargeting refers to the process of using cookies to gain insight into a users’ activity and interactions on your site and then allows you to ‘follow’ them around the internet displaying ads based on products or services they’ve previously looked at, or other alternatives that they may be interested in. When a user visits your site, a cookie embeds itself in the users’ browser, allowing it to see what websites they visit, targeting them with adverts as they travel through the web. A benefit of retargeting is the fact that it allows you to showcase your ads to users no matter where they are online, across a multitude of different sites, however, retargeting only works for users who have shown interest in your brand but haven’t yet made a purchase.

What is remarketing?

Remarketing refers to strategies that focus on email campaigns, and re-engaging customers through their inbox. For example, remarketing is often used as a marketing tactic to target customers who’s plan or trial is up, after they have abandoned shopping carts or added an item to their wishlist or favourites. It’s effective as it engages with customers who have already shown an interest in a product or service but simply did not click through to a final purchase. Similarly to retargeting, retargeting works as it reminds the consumer of your brand, and nudges them to complete a purchase, or return to your site.

How do remarketing and retargeting differ?

To put it simply – they don’t really. While they generally try and convert customers using different mediums – retargeting with ads and remarketing with emails, they both work towards the same collective goal: drawing the potential customer back to your site and encouraging them to make a purchase, thus driving sales to your website.

What are the benefits? 

Retargeting and remarketing are perfect for garnering higher conversion rates, as people are already familiar with the product or service being advertised to them. Similarly, it allows you to keep your brand connected with your target audience, even after they’ve left your site and increases exposure and trust in your brand as, by viewing your products and logo more frequently, customers are more likely to purchase from you. The data you gather can also help you to better understand your target audience and their browsing habits and allows you to improve your site. It increases repeat website traffic and also controls spending by putting specific ads in front of the right users, those who are more likely to click the link, visit your site again and purchase your product or service. Therefore, they help to boost your SEO and ranking, as revisits increase site reputation, sales conversions and much more.

Are there any disadvantages?

While there are no huge disadvantages to utilising retargeting and remarketing in your marketing strategy, businesses have to be careful not to bombard potential or existing customers with repetitive or irrelevant ads. Similarly, brands need to be careful to show someone the same product they have just purchased – whether it’s from your own company or not. In an InSkin Media survey, 53% of users find online ads ‘interesting and useful’ initially, but become irritated if repeatedly exposed to the same ad, while 55% reported that they are less likely to buy products or services if they see the same ad online multiple times. The biggest battle when it comes to retargeting and remarketing is making sure your audience doesn’t feel uncomfortable, as the thought of someone, even if it is simply a code, following your every move online can appear a bit creepy.

It is hard to compare retargeting and remarketing, as both attempt to increase conversions from consumers who are very likely to purchase from you, however both use subtly different techniques. To conclude, retargeting focuses on paid ads, while remarketing is focused on email campaigns which are sent to those who have already browsed, saved or searched for a specific product.

If you’re looking for ways to promote your brand, increase your engagement, convert more customers and maximise your ROI, here at SEO Yorkshire we can help! Contact us today to have a chat with our friendly team of SEO experts – we won’t bite, we promise!  

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