To Retarget or Not To Retarget?

Have you ever thought to yourself, “Wow, what a coincidence. I just visited Company X’s website and now I’m seeing ads for them all over the place!” Well, it’s not a coincidence and it doesn’t mean that that company has millions of dollars to spend to place ads everywhere. These ads were strategically placed via retargeting. Retargeting is a form of internet marketing in which the advertiser “cookies” visitors that view their site and then continues to target that visitor across the web by showing them banner ads whenever they visit websites that are in the display networks that they are running ads on.

For some, retargeting is a great strategy. It’s a way to get your company and brand back in front of the eyes of a website user that was, at one time, interested in the products or services that you have to offer. It serves as a quick little reminder and says, “Hey, remember me?” People browsing the web can have short attention spans. Just because they left your website once without converting, doesn’t necessarily mean that they hated your website or thought that your products were useless. It’s entirely possible that they thought of something else that they had to do and figured that they would just return later. Giving them a little nudge in the right direction by displaying a banner ad where they are guaranteed to see it can result in getting that visitor back to your site which will hopefully result in a conversion that didn’t happen the first time around.

For others, retargeting isn’t such a seamless strategy. Some website visitors may find this little reminder to be annoying, and maybe even creepy. Essentially, displaying banner ads on multiple sites that potential prospects visit is a little bit like stalking them and can be considered an invasion of privacy. Retargeting is similar to cold calling and other forms of “interruption marketing”. The advertiser has little to no control over the sites that the banner ads show up on and a potential prospect may not appreciate seeing your ad while they are attending to personal business online.

So, should you do it? A big determining factor is who your target audience and demographic is. If you are targeting a mass consumer audience or operate an e-commerce site, it makes sense. Retargeting is a quick way to get a visitor back that may have initially abandoned their shopping cart for a variety of reasons. On the other hand, retargeting might not be the best approach if you are a B2B service provider that is targeting business and marketing people. Think about the target audience. They know what you’re up to and don’t want to see you everywhere they go. In B2B, the sales cycle is often much longer and there is a lot more taken into account than whether or not today is the right day to buy that pair of shoes. If you are a serious contender for their business, they’ll remember you.

About the Author:

Nick Stamoulis is the President and Founder of Brick Marketing, a Boston SEO company. For more information please call 781-999-1222 or visit


  1. Good point about the B2B market

    There are a TON of opportunities within remarketing, but even the normal bland type can be quite effective

  2. Thanks for the list of SEO blogs. Very useful. This is exactly what I was looking for. SEO info changes so rapidly that it is hard to keep up with that. I will pick 3 of them to visit regularly.

Leave a Reply