🎯 Retargeting Vs. Remarketing: The Difference | 🏆 By Digital Marketing Agency, Absolute Digital 📶
Have you ever visited a website, and then the next day, while browsing online, you saw an ad for the very same website? Congratulations, you were “retargeted.”
The buyer’s journey is a long and complicated one, and it would be a mistake to think that it is a straightforward route. Few people will choose to buy a product after just seeing one advertisement or just hearing the brand’s name once which is why retargeting and remarketing is so crucial – to convince those who have interacted with your brand before to get closer to making a purchase.
While the importance of retargeting and remarketing is undeniable, how they work isn’t so direct. Many marketers use these terms interchangeably, but they are actually differences between them.
Let’s take a look at how you can use retargeting and remarketing in your digital campaign.
What is Retargeting?
Retargeting is the process of identifying people who have taken some action online (ex. visited your website or social profile) and then targeting them with digital ads. Retargeting is used to describe online ad placements, in text and image format, often based on a user’s activity on your website. Once users visit your site, a cookie is set on their internet browser, and this cookie lets you serve them ads on other websites they visit.
If you have ever visited a website and then later saw an ad for the brand while visiting another website or scrolling through Facebook, you’ve experienced retargeting. Part of the appeal of retargeting is that it can be done through large third-party networks like Google Display Network (GDN) — allowing advertisers to reach users on millions of websites online. These days, it’s also possible to do retargeting via social media like Facebook and Instagram.
Retargeting works by adding a pixel to a brand’s website. The pixel captures data about the people who visit the website and what they do on the site. The data is used to create audiences based on those interactions, and the audiences are then targeted through Google display or social media ads.
What is Remarketing?
Remarketing refers to the process of re-engaging current or past customers and re-engaging them based on their previous purchases or actions. Remarketing typically uses email to reconnect with audiences. Having a customer email list is required for remarketing, whereas it is not needed for retargeting.
The definitions of remarketing and retargeting can be a bit confusing because remarketing is sometimes used as a broad term to include both remarketing and retargeting tactics. For example, Google refers to its retargeting ad tools as Google Remarketing Tools.
But for the most part, remarketing specifically refers to the tactic of reconnecting with current or past customers through email. Often, remarketing is used as part of a larger retention marketing strategy.
So, in a sense, remarketing still is a form of retargeting, as its primary goal is to bring back traffic to your website.
How to use Retargeting/Remarketing?
Retargeting and remarketing are both lead nurturing tactics that help support a complete customer lifecycle marketing plan. They each put your brand back in front of warm audiences and drive leads and customers into your sales funnel.
Retargeting and remarketing are similar because have the same goals:
Target audiences who are already aware of your brand
Engage qualified audiences who are most likely to make a purchase
Build lasting brand awareness and recognition
The differences between retargeting vs. remarketing are in the tactics used to accomplish these goals.
Retargeting primarily uses paid ads to re-engage audiences who have visited your website or social profiles.
Remarketing primarily uses email to re-engage past customers who have already done business with your brand.
So which one is right for you?
Try retargeting if:
You want to focus on attracting new customers
You’re driving a lot of site traffic but not triggering conversions
You don’t have an email list of interested prospects
Try remarketing if:
You want to focus on re-engaging current or past customers
You don’t have a budget for ads
You already have an engaged email list
At the end of the day, when it comes to retargeting vs. remarketing you don’t have to choose. You can use both strategies at the same time to maximize your ROI and drive even more interested prospects into your sales funnel.
What's the Difference?
While the words ‘retargeting’ and ‘remarketing’ are sometimes used interchangeably, they have some important differences. When it comes to retargeting vs. remarketing, the main difference is in the strategy. Retargeting is mostly about serving ads to potential customers based on cookies while remarketing is usually based on email. Remarketing works by collecting the information of users and creating lists, which are used later to send sales emails.
The main difference between remarketing and retargeting is that remarketing uses marketing emails to re-engage site visitors, while retargeting involves strategic ad campaigns. While remarketing is localized on one platform (email), retargeting involves ad content appearing on outside platforms (such as search engine or social media ads).
Though remarketing and retargeting are different, the scenario that prompts a business to use either tactic is similar. A user visits the company’s website and exits without making a purchase. However, here is where the similarities between remarketing vs. retargeting end.
With retargeting, the business then re-engages the user through an ad that appears on another site or a search engine. Retargeting and remarketing are both effective methods in their own right, yet a combination of both may be the best strategy to boost your digital marketing activity and improve your bottom line.
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