A Guide to Remarketing & Retargeting

graphic for remarketing retargeting


Remarketing and retargeting are powerful strategies that help brands stay top-of-mind for potential customers who have interacted with their digital assets but haven’t converted. This article aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of these techniques, from the basic principles to advanced strategies, tools, and best practices.

What are Remarketing and Retargeting?

Remarketing and retargeting are often used interchangeably but have subtle differences. Both involve targeting users who have previously interacted with your brand, but the methods and platforms can differ.

Remarketing vs. Retargeting: The Distinction

  • Remarketing: Generally refers to re-engaging customers through email. For example, sending an email to a customer who abandoned their shopping cart.
  • Retargeting: More commonly refers to online ad placements and display ads served to users who have visited your website but didn’t convert.

Why are Remarketing and Retargeting Essential?

These strategies allow you to focus your advertising spend on a more qualified, engaged audience. They can significantly improve ROI, increase brand recall, and encourage conversions that might not have otherwise happened.

Core Components of Remarketing & Retargeting

Audience Segmentation

  • Behavioral Segmentation: Targeting users based on specific actions they took on your site, like visiting a particular product page.
  • Demographic Segmentation: Targeting based on age, gender, location, etc.

Platform Selection

  • Google Ads: Offers various retargeting options including search retargeting and RLSA (Remarketing Lists for Search Ads).
  • Facebook & Instagram: Custom Audiences allow for detailed retargeting strategies.
  • LinkedIn: Ideal for B2B retargeting.

Ad Content and Creatives

  • Dynamic Ads: These ads automatically show different content based on the user’s past behavior.
  • Ad Copy: The messaging should be compelling and directly related to the user’s past interaction with your brand.

Email Remarketing

  • Cart Abandonment Emails: Remind customers who have left items in their cart to complete the purchase.
  • Upsell and Cross-Sell Emails: Target customers who have made a purchase with additional, complementary products.

Advanced Strategies

  • Frequency Capping: Limit the number of times an ad is shown to the same user to avoid ad fatigue.
  • Sequential Retargeting: Show different ads to the same user as they move down the funnel.
  • Burn Pixels: Remove users from your retargeting list once they’ve converted to avoid wasting ad spend.

Analytics and Reporting

  • Conversion Tracking: Essential for understanding the ROI of your campaigns.
  • Attribution Modeling: Understand the role that remarketing and retargeting play in your customer’s journey.

Best Practices and Compliance

  • Transparency: Always let users know why they are seeing an ad.
  • Data Privacy: Be compliant with GDPR, CCPA, and other data protection laws.
  • A/B Testing: Always test different versions of your ads to see what’s most effective.


Remarketing and retargeting are not just buzzwords; they’re essential strategies for maximizing the ROI of your digital marketing efforts. This module has equipped you with the knowledge and tools you need to implement these strategies effectively.