The Pros and Cons of Retargeting in 2015

It’s still 2014, but a lot has changed since the beginning of the year. Retargeting is one of those marketing tactics that has gone through the ringer as Google, searchers, and the search space in general continue to evolve. This tactic’s reputation is now a little bit blurry. Some still stand by the benefits, so will these continue to grow or fade as we enter into 2015?

It’s tough to say, so decide for yourself with some of the following pros and cons.

shutterstock 139177646 760x503 The Pros and Cons of Retargeting in 2015

A Quick Recap: How Retargeting Works

Retargeting is a marketing method that will track your audience’s behavior online so your ads show up to the most relevant audience. This also benefits consumers because they will only see ads that relate to them, so everyone wins. In fact, a study by AdRoll says marketers who use retargeting generally have higher ROIs.

Here is how it works: You place a small piece of code on your website and every time someone new visits your website, the code will drop an anonymous browser cookie. Now you have “cookied” visitors, so whenever those people surf the Internet the cookie will let your retargeting provider (most likely AdWords) know when to serve that person your ads.

Whenever I talk with my family or friends about retargeting, I tell them to go take a look at the ads that are being shown to them on the web right now. In the vast majority of cases, the ads are relevant. Did you look up engagement rings last week? Are you now seeing ads for wedding venues and wedding dresses? That’s retargeting.

It’s certainly a big topic so check out an additional post on SEJ here if you’re interested in learning more.

So what’s the difference between retargeting and remarketing?

The terms “retargeting” and “remarketing” essentially mean the same thing, which has been causing confusion amongst marketers for years. According to a Moz article, Google AdWords launched a form of retargeting in their display network back in 2010, which they called “remarketing.” In other words, “remarketing is specific to Google AdWords display network, and retargeting is the marketing approach behind remarketing.”

The Pros and Cons of Retargeting Explained

While there might be a few more bullet points under the pros section, that doesn’t mean the strategy is necessarily more positive than negative. Some of the points below are more significant than others, so the pros and cons are listed in order of importance:

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