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Remarketing, are you doing it and if you're not, should you be?

That’s the question I want to put out there for everyone. In the world of PPC, there are many players. For today’s discussion, I’m going to focus on Google since they own 80%+ of the market.

What’s remarketing you ask – great, glad you did. According to Wikipedia, Retargeting (or Remarketing as Google calls it inside Adwords) is…

is a form of online targeted advertising by which online advertising is delivered to consumers based on previous Internet actions that did not in the past result in a conversion (in other words, the action intended by the site owner, typically making a purchase)

The reason I wanted to start a discussion on retargeting was to see..

1. Does it work?


2. Are you doing it? If so, with success?

Retargeting From the Consumer Side

Here’s my personal story with retargeting:

About a month ago, I was searching for a new car – specifically an Infiniti G37. I didn’t plan on buying one anytime soon, but I was just starting to research. I was on Google and since my search yielded a very targeted paid search ad right to the Infiniti site on the G37, I clicked it. I arrived on the Infiniti site to browse for a few minutes and research. Then, I left.

Well, since Infiniti wants to maximize all their paid clicks, they were able to leverage Google’s remarketing platform to notice that I had clicked the Infiniti PPC ad, but didn’t (in the eyes of whatever Infiniti wants me to do) convert.

Since then, for the past month, every site that I visit that’s showing Adsense, I see something like so:

Photo Credit: Google

You’ll notice that I was on a site about C++, nothing related to cars in this case at all. Typically, Adsense is site sensitive and will serve ads to visitors based on the site’s content, except in the case of remarketing.

You will see ads based on the premise that you previously visited a site from a PPC customer of Google (Infiniti in this case) that didn’t achieve their goal. They do this in hopes to get you (the customer) to convert. So will I convert and give Infiniti my information so they can sell me a new car?

If they keep this remarketing campaign up, I just might indeed. See how this applies to the customers you’re currently losing that don’t convert once they click your PPC ad?

Retargeting From the Advertiser Side

Google makes this super easy. Basically, you select your campaign and then tell the Adwords rule that you want target visitors on the Google Content network (ie. Adsense) that you want to see your ads that previously clicked your PPC ad but didn’t convert. It’s that simple.

Now it’s your turn to share… are you using Remarketing? Is it working? What types of conversion rates are you all seeing? I’d love to see what everyone thinks about remarketing/retargeting in general…

Cheers, Matthew

About Matthew Swanson

My name is Matthew Swanson and I’ve been in the online world right at 12 years now. I started as a web developer at in 2000 working with Shane Pike. transitioned as we were bought by CareerBuilder in 2002 and I worked on the plumbing and site infrastructure team building the platform for about 7 years in several different roles. Before leaving CareerBuilder in 2007, I helped to launch the CareerBuilder – Facebook partnership. I’m currently the CTO at HBN Interactive and run House Buyer Network – our service helps connect tens of thousands of distressed and motivated home sellers with our network of top tier Real Estate Agents across the US and Canada.Starting in January 2011, our sister company, HBN Media, started the build and launch of Commissions, Inc., a platform connecting brokers and agents with home seekers across the US and Canada. We provide the tools necessary to increase the quality and quantity of buyer leads for brokers and agents. Our platform helps our brokers and agents effectively and efficiently manage those leads through our innovative software and data capture technologies. If your interested, let me know.

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