Our perspective at VantagePoint

Missing out on website conversions? Don’t forget this under-used tool.


I was perusing the site of one of my favorite search engine marketing resources (which is usually as fun as it sounds) when I came across an interesting statistic: According to a study by ValueClick, 98% of first-time visitors to online retailers don’t convert/make a purchase. The implications of this statistic are as far-reaching as they are obvious. A surprising amount of online retailers seem to be ok with this though, writing it off as normal with a “well, there’s nothing we can do about it attitude.

However, Google AdWords offers a way to get back in front of those prodigal visitors with a tried-and-true outlet called Remarketing ads. A mainstay in the “toolbox of many search engine marketers for years, Google AdWords Remarketing gives you the ability to tag website visitors who don’t convert. Later when they visit other websites within the vast Google Display Network (which reaches 92% of internet users in the U.S.), you’ll have the opportunity to show them your ads.

Set-up is as quick and easy as other Search and Display Network AdWords ads. You can combine your ads with frequency capping, contextual/audience targeting, and a litany of other proprietary technology to target as precisely as you wish. In addition, you still have the same flexibility in pricing as all Display Network campaigns, with the ability to set the max amount you’re comfortable paying for clicks or impressions. Recently Google has beefed up the capabilities for Remarketing ads even further, including the recent release of Dynamic Display ads. These make it possible to customize your ads based on past interactions with visitors, serving up ads with specific products they viewed while on your site.

There’s one thing that’s important to keep in mind here, however: Don’t expect your click through rate with Display Network Remarketing ads to match your Search Network AdWords ads. Again, the main purpose of Remarketing ads are to serve as a reminder to previous website visitors. The goal here is impressions, with the intention that eventually the visitor will be prompted to come back to your website. For that reason, in my experience I’ve found that Remarketing offers tremendous ROI. Cost per click is typically comparable to Search Network ads; however, you’ll have a vastly higher number of impressions on potential customers who have already pre-qualified themselves as interested in YOUR site. This benefit is invaluable, and for my money that’s where Remarketing ads shine.

These website visitors have shown a clear and obvious interest in your products or website. Just because they didn’t make a purchase on the first visit doesn’t mean they aren’t still interested in what you have to offer. Try remarketing ads for a subtle and cost-effective “don’t forget about us! reminder — they can often serve as the tipping point to get a visitor back to your site and completing a conversion.

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