As you know advertising plays a major role in driving awareness and bringing people to your website. However, most of the people visit your website and leave without making any purchases. As per the statistics, 97% of people who visit your website for the first time leave without making any purchases. Retargeting ads serve as a reminder to bring your website visitors back to your products or services.

Retargeting ads allow you to target visitors with relevant text or visual ads based on what they viewed on your website. Retargeting ads can be done via Google ads, Facebook ads, LinkedIn ads, and other retargeting platforms.

Here, in this blog, we will discuss in detail about retargeting ads and how it works. You’ll learn about different types of retargeting and how to set up a retargeting campaign.

WebMaxy eGrowth can help you create and export retargeting lists to Google and Meta Ads. Learn more about WebMaxy eGrowth here.

What are retargeting ads? 

Retargeting ads are a type of online advertising which are directed toward people who have already visited your website. Retargeting ads give you an opportunity to recapture potential customers or leads who left your site without making a purchase.

For example, if a potential customer adds a product to their cart and abandons it before leaving your site. You can use retargeting ads to show them the same product while they are on other websites.

By reminding people about the products they left in their cart, you can increase the chances of conversion. You can also provide them with special offers like free shipping and extra discounts to entice them to complete the purchase.

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How do retargeting ads work? Types of retargeting

Retargeting ads work with several digital marketing channels like search, display, social, and email. For retargeting to work effectively, browser users must enable cookies. These cookies are small files that are stored on user devices and track user behavior and analyze traffic. Once cookies are stored on the user’s device, the user is tagged with a unique identifier that enables you to determine whether a user completed a conversion for goals like filling out a form or checking out a shopping cart.

Here, we will tell you about the two types of retargeting ads. Each of them works a bit differently and has their own pros or cons. The type of retargeting ads you choose depends on the information you have available in your database.

1. Pixel-based retargeting 

Pixel-based retargeting is the best way to retarget any anonymous site visitors. When a person lands up on your website, a piece of JavaScript or a pixel is placed on their browser which makes it ‘cookie-d’. This cookie works when people leave your site and go to other retargeting platforms. The cookie informs the retargeting platform to serve specific ads based on pages they previously visited on your site.

The advantage of implementing pixel-based retargeting is that it is fast, based on the specific page visited, and user-behavior based. The disadvantage of pixel-based retargeting is that sometimes people don’t allow cookies which unable you to track user behavior. Also, retargeting ads depend on the number of people visiting your website. Additionally, it takes time to implement JavaScript on different website pages.

2. List-based retargeting 

List-based retargeting is best to target customers whose information is in your database. You can use your existing customers’ contact information to retarget them with specific types of ads. You can target your existing customers based on their past purchases and give them relevant product recommendations.

For list-based retargeting, you need to upload a list of email addresses on the platform you want to target those customers. These platforms will use these email addresses to identify users who have those addresses to serve them with the retargeting ads.

One major advantage of list-based retargeting is that it’s highly customizable. However, if a person has added a different email address on their social media than the one you mentioned-in that case, they won’t see your ads. Remember, list-based retargeting is not automatic like pixel-based retargeting. Therefore, you need to maintain, update, and upload the retargeting list on a timely basis.

When should you implement retargeting campaigns? 

Retargeting ads can help you recapture leads or customers that would have been lost otherwise. Here, we will tell you when you should use retargeting ads:

  • Most of the people need to feel they know and trust a brand before making a purchase. Retargeting ads help you to stay at the top of the customers’ minds. It not only helps you to increase brand awareness but drives conversions as well. According to a report, generally, customers need to hear a brand message more than 7 times to decide to make a purchase.
  • Retargeting ads are best for businesses that have already been in the market for a while. Retargeting is a long-term marketing strategy to help businesses get more conversions. Google remarketing ads are best for you if you have more than 100 website visitors in a month.
  • Retargeting ads are an effective way to showcase best-selling products to your existing customers. Current customers who have already experienced your products or services have a high chance of repurchasing from your brand again. This can increase conversions and ROI from your ads.
  • You can introduce new collections through retargeting ads. People who purchase from you and visit your website are great to target when you’re launching new collections. This way you’ll be able to bring their attention to what’s new in your store. You can do this with display campaigns on Google ads and Facebook retargeting.
  • Most of the online sellers deal with a slow-moving inventory. Running retargeting ads is an easy way to put surplus products in front of your customers. It’s a low-budget and effortless way to sell these products.

Retargeting vs remarketing 


Retargeting and remarketing are often confused with each other. Retargeting focuses on reaching audiences who have already visited your website and are aware of your brand. However, remarketing focuses on engaging with existing customers through emails.

A retargeting ad aims to show people how your product or service is best suited to fix their problem. Retargeting helps you to tailor a message based on what customers viewed on your website.

You can analyze your sales data and find out what customers prefer and like the most. This way you can determine the certain products to use for retargeting customers. You can also create a separate ad for promoting a new collection to a segment of your target market.

For example, you checked out a website of an apparel brand but you exited without making a purchase. Next, when you open Facebook, you get an ad of the same brand displaying their popular collection. This might be due to the fact that the brand has tracked your behavior and they have set retargeting ads on Facebook.

Remarketing is used to re-engage inactive or lost customers. It aims to strengthen customer relationships by using marketing tactics to approach them personally. For example, you give an extra discount to customers to purchase again from your website.

You can use remarketing to re-spark the interest of your customers. For instance, a customer makes a purchase from your site every few weeks. However, it’s been a while since they visited your website or made a purchase. In that case, you can create a personalized message and send them over email to bring their interest again.

Remarketing can be used in many ways to engage with customers. For example, your company offers membership to customers to get extra benefits. You can use remarketing to reach out to customers whose memberships are expiring soon and need renewal.

Sending an email will not only serve as a reminder but tell them the benefits of being a member. You can add stats that are unique and personal to customers such as the items they purchased and the amount of money they saved on their purchases. By adding a personal touch to the messages you can make customers feel connected to your brand.

What are the benefits of retargeting ads? 

Now, you know the types of retargeting ads and how remarketing is different from retargeting. In this section, we will tell you about the benefits of retargeting ads.


1. Build brand awareness 

Retargeting ads are great to build brand awareness among website visitors. You can highlight relevant products, top-selling products, features, and so on. These ads are usually served to pixel-based lists. However, these ads retargeting is done for people who have just engaged with your brand. Thus, the click-through rates are less for this type of campaign.

The purpose of the awareness campaign is to make customers aware. You can track impressions and engagement metrics as well. Often, the awareness campaigns are created to drive the macro conversion goal i.e. sales.

2. Increases conversions 

Conversion goals are the desired actions that you want the customers to take. You can create conversion campaigns to guide customers to take the next action. You can target a specific list of customers who are interested in your brand.

List-based retargeting ads are best to drive conversions. You can target leads and direct them to the next action which you want them to take. You can measure conversion campaigns with metrics like click-through rate, form submission, cost per acquisition, and more.

3. Make customers complete the journey 

Retargeting ads can help you make customers complete the buying journey. For example, you can retarget customers who have already shown interest in your brand; created an account or downloaded an ebook. Through ad retargeting, you can show them how your product or service can help them achieve their goal. This can encourage them to complete their buying journey.

4. Increase Customer Lifetime Value (CLTV) 

Customer lifetime value is the amount of money a customer spends on your brand throughout their entire relationship with your business. By using retargeting ads, you can keep your customers reminded of your brand and encourage them to continue purchasing from you.

5. Reach abandoned cart customers 

Many times customers add products to their cart but don’t make a purchase. Retargeting ads can help you get your abandoned cart customers back. These ads can remind them that the products they are interested in are still available in the store. Also, you can offer free shipping or extra discounts to customers to tempt them to complete the purchase.

6. Share new products 

When a customer visits your website, it’s because they are interested in what your brand has to offer. Retargeting ads can help you share new products with customers who are interested in your offerings. You can add CTA buttons that redirect customers back to your site when they see your retargeting ads.

However, remember that your creatives and landing pages align. Make sure you target the audience based on their buying journey stage. If they are in the awareness phase of the journey then you can experiment with the content that you show them.

What is Email retargeting? 


Email retargeting is when you use customers’ information that you gathered previously like their name, location, and email address to send them personalized emails. Email retargeting can be very effective to target existing customers.

You can send product recommendations to customers via email based on the items they previously purchased from your brand. You can give these customers incentives and extra discounts for encouraging repeat purchases.

Email retargeting has its own advantages and disadvantages. Nowadays, customers are very active on social media platforms. Social media retargeting can help you to create buzz among people easily as users tend to like and share content with other people.

How can you retarget people on social media who have visited your site? 

You can retarget people on social media who have visited your website by utilizing tracking pixels. As we described above, tracking pixels are pieces of code that collect information about the web pages a user visits on your website.

When users leave your website and visit a social media platform, they are targeted with the ads of the same web pages. In the next section, we will talk about how you can set up a Facebook retargeting ad campaign.

What is Facebook retargeting?


Facebook retargeting ads use audience data to show ads to the people who have visited your website to bring them back and to entice them to complete the action. Facebook retargeting ads can help you get back your potential customers and convert them into paying customers.

Facebook ad technology leverages data from different profiles of customers to show them relevant ads. It gives advertisers an opportunity to put their ads in front of the right audiences.

As per the statistics, Facebook has around 2.99 billion users in the world. Along with having a large user base and Facebook’s ability to target users based on their data, you’ve higher chances of showcasing ads to the right people. These ads are shown to people based on their browsing history on your website.

For example, you go to the website of footwear online to make a purchase but you exit without buying anything. Next, you open Facebook to check the latest updates from your friends and family. But you get to see an ad displaying the same pair of shoes that you checked out on a website previously.

To run a retargeting ad campaign on Facebook, you’ll set an ad campaign and choose your audience set like a regular one. However, there will be differences in the ad manager in which you’ll toggle a switch that will tell a website that it’s a retargeting campaign. This way Facebook will know how to filter the audiences to reach your target market.

How to create a retargeting ad on Facebook? 

Retargeting ads can help you to convert customers who are already interested in your products or services. Here, we have given the steps that you can follow to create a retargeting ad on Facebook.

1. Build a list of existing customers, or gather pixels data from your website 

To start with creating a retargeting ad on Facebook, you need a list of contacts to retarget. You can create a list based on different criteria like buying journey stage and interests based on the recent browsing history of your customers. If your list is large enough, you can move to the next step, and if not then you need to wait for some time. Also, you can choose to change your segmentation criteria and type of retargeting.

2. Upload the list to Facebook ad manager 

Now, convert your lists into a .CSV file and import it into Facebook Custom audience manager. This will help Facebook to match email addresses with Facebook profiles for retargeting ads. There are many third-party platforms that can help sync these lists on social media.

To upload your list, select “Manage Your Ads” on Facebook home page and next click “Audiences’ on the left toolbar. This way you can create a contact list by uploading a .CSV or .TXT file. You’ll also get the option to sort the users by IDs, email addresses, and phone numbers.

Remember to give an appropriate name to the list so that you can find it easily later. Next, leave the list for some time to allow all the contacts to get uploaded. If you try to create a retargeting ad immediately, the contacts may not be uploaded fully.

In case you don’t have a retargeting list, you can use Audience Manager that’ll allow you to do standard targeting. You can target audiences based on attributes, demography, geography, and more.

3. Decide your destination URL 

For creating a new retargeting ad campaign, click on “Create Ad” in the top right of the ad platform home screen. Next, choose an objective for the campaign based on your marketing goal. Next, include a UTM tracking code- a snippet of text at the end of your URL to help you to track clicks and conversions from your campaigns.

Let’s take an example, we created a campaign called “ Retargeting” and our URL for the free demo would look like this: https://offers.webmaxy/free-demo.


After creating a URL, give a name to your campaign. Try to keep similar names for campaigns with similar objectives to make it easier for you to track if you have multiple campaigns running.

4. Conduct ads segmentation 

Next, select your custom audience and set the geographic location that you want to target. The location setting allows you to target people in a specific region. For example, if your list contains contacts from all over the world and you select “United States”, only people in the United States will be shown your ads.

You can also target customers based on age, interests, behaviors, and other demographic settings based on your buyer personas. However, when creating conversion campaigns, you’re retargeting a list of specific users, and adding additional audience filters doesn’t make sense.

6. Determine your budget 

Before, you even start the campaign, it’s important to determine a budget for retargeting ads. For Facebook retargeting ad campaigns, set a lifetime budget for the entire duration of the campaign. Then, you can monitor and adjust the campaign budget as per the performance. If you’re a beginner then you should opt for bidding to “ Optimize for Website Click.”

You should name your ad set at this stage to help differentiate creatives, budgets, lists, etc. for different ad sets in the same campaign.

7. Create your ad 

In each ad, you can add up to six images to test which one performs the best. Be clear and concise with your messaging as people don’t tend to see an advertisement for a long time. Include relevant and clear call-to-action buttons such as Shop Now, Book Now, Learn more, etc at a noticeable position in an ad.

These retargeting ads are shown on mobile newsfeeds, desktops, and on partner mobile apps. Depending on where you want your customers to see these ad retargeting campaigns, you can turn these options on and off.

Below, we have started some of the requirements for Facebook ads:

  • The image size should be 1080 x 1080 pixels.
  • Text can be used in headlines, but there are character limits for different ad types. For the headline, you can write up to 27 characters.
  • There are advanced options in which you can write a News feed link description to explain the ad and to provide better context to users. For the link description, you have a limit of up to 27 characters.

Once you have set up your ad, you can click the “Publish” button to start running your retargeting ad.

7. Track progress and make changes accordingly 

Once you have successfully created a retargeting ad on Facebook, it’s time to track its progress. You can track various metrics like reach, website clicks, CPC, and total spending compared to your set goals.

You can understand how your Facebook retargeting campaigns are doing by looking at the Facebook advertising home page. You can go into an ad set to see information like clicks and spending per day. You can also make changes based on the results such as increasing the budget, changing the creatives, and deleting the creatives assets that aren’t working.

Retargeting ads: The conclusion 

Retargeting ads can help you engage and convert prospects that have already shown interest in your brand. You can reach out to customers on different platforms to remind them to resume their journey and purchase the products in their cart. You can create retargeting ads on various platforms like Google ads, Facebook ads, and Twitter ads.

WebMaxy eGrowth enables you to create retargeting ad lists for Google and Meta. It has a customer segmentation feature that enables you to segment the target market based on different attributes, demographics, behaviors, browsing history, etc. You can target these customers with relevant messaging at the right time through retargeting ads.

In the Marketing insights dashboard, you can analyze the performance of different ad campaigns. You can see which ad campaign is performing the best & worst and make changes accordingly. There are many other features in WebMaxy eGrowth such as a KPI dashboard, marketing campaignssocial campaign, email marketing, WhatsApp marketingcustomer loyalty, and help desk.

Schedule a call with our experts to learn more about WebMaxy eGrowth and its features, or email us at [email protected].

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Retargeting ads: FAQs

What is retargeting?

Retargeting marketing is the process of targeting customers who have already visited your website or made a purchase. Retargeting can help you drive the attention of customers toward your brand and encourage them to complete a purchase or make a purchase again. There are different ways through which you can retarget customers such as emails, Google ads, Facebook ads, and Twitter ads.

What are the two types of retargeting?

Retargeting can help you to reach out to customers who have already shown interest in your brand. The two types of retargeting are as follows. 

– Pixel-based retargeting 

– List-based retargeting

What is an example of a retargeting ad?

An example of a retargeting ad is when a customer visits a website and browses certain products and leave without making a purchase. Next, when they open Facebook, they get to see an ad on Facebook with the same products they browsed on the website. Retargeting can help you to stay at the top of customers’ minds and entice them to complete the purchase.

Why is retargeting important?

Retargeting ads can help you increase brand awareness by keeping your products and services in front of your potential customers. You can showcase the products or services in which customers have already shown interest. This can help you to increase conversion rates by encouraging customers to make a purchase.