How To Spend Your Retargeting Budget Like An Expert In 2021




2020 will always be remembered when life on earth changed forever, when many potential and current customers got away because of life-changing circumstances. 2021 is a perfect year to plan and spend your retargeting budget strategically.

Retargeting is a re-engagement strategy that includes implementing online ads or displaying ad campaigns that target users who already interacted with your website. It helps you achieve the following advertising goals:

  • Retarget potential customers who abandoned carts.
  • Boost customer retention.
  • Brand awareness.
  • Brand recognition.
  • Encourage previous customers to return and buy more.

Here's a list of the best advice to help you optimize your retargeting campaigns in 2021.

Tips On How To Spend Your Retargeting Budget in 2021

This section is divided into four categories:

  • From A Strategy Standpoint
  • From A Messaging Standpoint
  • Facebook Retargeting
  • Google Ads Retargeting

I think it will be more precise and easy to understand if I categorize these retargeting budget tips.

Here we go!

1. From A Strategy Standpoint

A strategy allows you to develop your user retargeting and enhance the opportunity to convert visitors to paying customers.

Classify Your Audience Based On Interaction

First, it's important to classify your audiences by website interaction.

If a site visitor has only viewed the home page, then serve a rotating display of the different products or services you offer. If a visitor has viewed a specific service or product, then retarget them with ads specific to that.

You also need to know whether a visitor has already converted or not. Without knowing this critical information, you're shooting blind by promoting ads the user had already engaged with before. More importantly, you may be promoting a product that users have already bought.

Retarget Visitors Who Failed To Complete An Action

It's smart to use Google's targeting options to target particular pages and remarket a similar webpage.

For example, recommend to visitors who visited a blog post about Topic X to check out your whitepaper on Topic X. Retarget users visited your pricing page but did not convert.

Doing so also works excellent with whitepaper downloads – by retargeting users who checked out the whitepaper page but did not submit the form, leading to the "Thank You" page.

Structure Your Retargeting Campaigns Carefully

Look at how your retargeting campaigns are classified. Now, answer the following questions:

  • Are the image ads and text ads in separate ad groups?
  • Does each audience have its ad group?
  • Are your retargeting campaigns classified by theme?

Ensure that the structure makes sense and is understood by other people looking into your account.

Create An Optimization Routine

Most of the time, advertisers' “set it and forget it” with retargeting campaigns. Luckily, there are optimization tests you can do to help enhance performance.

Follow this 2-step process:

  • Step 1: Analyze your placement reports and do your best to exclude very unrelated sites you show up on the Google Display Network.
  • Step 2: Focus your ad scheduling to show during the most relevant times for your business.

Remember that sometimes the best converters aren't mobile users, so always analyze your device ad performance.

Never Forget Your Marketing Funnel

Always keep your marketing funnel in mind to develop content for every stage of it. 

  • Awareness
  • Interest
  • Evaluation
  • Commitment
  • Sale

For each stage in the process, your ads should feel different. Retargeting makes it easy to set-up content marketing materials for each stage of the funnel.

Use Targeting Filters

Use additional targeting filters to define audiences better.

Just because you consider visitors potential converters who are already familiar with your brand and have a higher level of intent doesn't mean they're the perfect target for all your retargeting campaigns.

Instead, use more data filters as much as you can. Take site visitors and narrow them by other targeting filters to guarantee that you're focused on the best audience possible.

Helpful demographic targeting filters may include:

  • Location
  • Age
  • Income
  • Campaign-specific interests

2. From A Messaging Standpoint

Messaging is critical in a retargeting campaign.

Now that you have gained valuable information about your audience, given they have visited your website, it already makes an excellent opportunity to tailor your ad messaging based on what you already know.

Try Different Messages

There are two approaches when developing a retargeting message:

  • Re-iterate your key selling points. If people compare multiple products, keep your key distinctions in front of their minds.
  • Present a different message than what people saw before. If people didn't convert on the first offer, make them another offer they'll like better.

In most cases, do not limit retargeting campaigns by budget; limit it by profitability instead. If increasing a retargeting campaign's budget will increase profits, that's an easier but more significant win.

Create Personable Retargeting Campaigns

Instead of stock photos, use pictures of your team. People are much better at identifying people, and repeatedly seeing the same person develops a subconscious rapport.

Retargeting ads that address specific concerns of your clients is a great practice.

Suppose you promote enough randomized retargeted ads to a potential customer. In that case, you're forced to solve that problem they need to solve. But don't just send people to your homepage. Please direct them to a targeted landing page that solves that problem in detail, and you're sure to get a final conversion.

Avoid Annoying Your Current Customers

With retargeting, you need to give people something new, a new piece of info, benefit, or offer they may have overlooked on your site.

Also, add customers who already converted to an exclusion list. Unless you are trying to sell more, or your product is a daily necessity, targeting those who converted will only irritate them and decrease your click-through rate or CTR.

Avoid Annoying Pre-converted Customers Too

Nothing is worse than your potential customers seeing the same ad repeatedly. It's annoying, and pre-converted customers might start disliking your brand.

The trick is to mix it up—experiment on different messaging, as I mentioned earlier.

Surprise Customers

The main goal of retargeting is to appeal to people who are already in your database for one reason. It means that this isn't your first encounter with this group of customers – they already have some awareness of your brand.

Re-introduce yourself with a surprising retargeting ad copy. If you've been creating content and messaging in the same way for a long time, this can prove to be particularly useful.

Utilizing surprising or incredibly loud messaging when a previous customer may not expect it can entice them to buy from your brand again.


Get the outside eyes and feedback you need to get on the right path with your marketing.

Gain clarity and understanding. You'll leave your discovery call knowing where to focus your marketing efforts right now to get the best return on your investment.

3. Facebook Retargeting

With Facebook retargeting, you can remind users about the products or services they've browsed or bought on your:

  • Website
  • Mobile app
  • Marketplace
  • Instagram Shopping

Users may automatically see the products or similar products to what they saw before using Facebook retargeting.

Follow Up On Events Using Your Retargeting Campaigns

Retargeting budget - Facebook events

Companies that do combinations of in-person events and digital advertising can see real power in the synergy between efforts.

There's real power in combining in-person events and digital advertising. If you want to drive more attendance for your event, then you need to launch a retargeting campaign on Facebook.

What's great about it is you can retarget Facebook users who did – or didn't – attend live events, directing them to podcasts, eBooks, and webinars.

Retarget With Purposeful Videos

Retargeting budget - Purposeful videos

Look at the high converting web pages on your website and retarget visitors who didn't convert with your best performing video.

Videos are excellent content in retargeting customers. First, analyze the high converting pages on your site, then retarget visitors who didn't convert with your best performing videos.

For example, if someone visits your "How To" page, retarget that visitor with your "Do It Yourself" video to further enforce your message.

It's time to retarget visitors with a video testimonial about your service if you still didn't get conversions. People now know who you are, how your service works, but they need some social proof.

Get Customers To Open Their Emails

Resend another email to people who did not open your first email, increasing the open rate percentage.

Use email marketing tools that will allow you to retarget users who did not open your emails with Facebook ads. This way, you extend your overall reach and maintain a higher ROI for each marketing campaign you send.

4. Google Ads Retargeting

Google Ads retargeting is a great way to connect with users who previously interacted with your website or mobile app. It allows advertisers to strategically position their ads in front of users as they browse Google or its partner websites. It also helps you boost your brand awareness or remind users to buy from you.

Stand Out With Peculiar Ads

Retargeting budget - Google Ads

Launching your first retargeting campaigns through Google Ads is a great way to start, especially if you already have an active account.

You can get started quickly, and Google Ads and Analytics make it very easy to target a range of audiences. Also, no extra site tagging is necessary if you already have the Google Analytics code installed on your website.

When it comes to ads, always have fun and be creative. Here are examples of eye-catching elements you can implement in your Google ad:

  • Unique color palettes.
  • Popping imagery.
  • Surprising but respective language.

Besides helping you get more clicks, most display advertising systems like Google reward ads with higher engagement, generating positive feedback to help you achieve your retargeting goals.

Narrow Down Your Targeting To Specific Websites

If you find out that your audience visits news sites, use your retargeting campaign to target people.

When people see your Google ads on the websites, they are familiar with and might deem authoritative; it helps your brand.

Also, if you use Google Ads, it's cheaper to target a website with retargeting over directly targeting it. Google prioritizes retargeting ads as users are more likely to click an ad they are accustomed to.

Targeting the specific placements also makes your Google ads more likely to show there than other placements with general retargeting. The budget is allocated only for those sites.

Use AI For Your Retargeting Campaigns

Suppose Google users browse your site and show interest in a product. In that case, you will later need to present them with retargeted ads showing the other products they are likely to be interested in based on AI tech from the Google platform.

Things To Consider When Choosing Between Facebook And Google Retargeting

With all the tips listed above, it's time to decide; it can be challenging to choose whether to spend your retargeting budget with Facebook or Google.

Where most online marketers go wrong is the actual decision-making process. It is crucial to understand what you should consider before making a decision.

Here are five things to consider when making a decision:

  • Consider your message.
  • Consider what you are trying to sell.
  • Consider your audience.
  • Consider your ad format.
  • Consider mix and matching.

And those are the tips on how to spend your retargeting budget like an expert in 2021.

Check out the recommended resources section below to learn more about retargeting.

Recommended Retargeting Resources

7 Facebook Ad Retargeting Strategies You Need to Try

Google Display Retargeting Ads: A Budget-Friendly AdWords Option

How Retargeting Works + 35 Retargeting
Campaigns You’ve Never Seen Before

So what do you think about this article? Are you ready to spend your retargeting budget wisely in 2021?

Leave a comment below, and let's discuss it.

As always, it will be a great honor if you think this article is worth the SHARE.

Are you looking for more online advertising help? Check out our Ultimate Guide to Online Advertising for Small Businesses.


Get the outside eyes and feedback you need to get on the right path with your marketing.

Gain clarity and understanding. You'll leave your discovery call knowing where to focus your marketing efforts right now to get the best return on your investment.

Header image is courtesy of Pixelied.

About the author, Tim Fitzpatrick

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