remarketing using Google Ads 

Remarketing is often seen as the best converting strategy within online marketing. I am sure there are exceptions, but in most cases, it’s probably true. Learn what it is, if you can use it, and how to do so below.

Topic number six:

Remarketing via Google Ads 

In the world of tech, the naming of things is often very plain and simple, and it’s the same in the case of remarketing. Marketing once is “marketing”, marketing again is called “re – marketing” – surprise, surprise. Fifty years ago, if someone walked past your butchery, bakery, or candle-stick-makery they might have seen a sign in your window saying “10% off”, and if they walked past again that day, they were “remarketed” to, before the term was coined. How it works digitally is both exactly the same, and entirely different. Let’s dive in.

Suppose that someone comes to your website (John’s Bagels) and looks around for two minutes, then leaves. Then, the next day they see an advert for John’s Bagels on Facebook and clicks through to the site again – this was perhaps a coincedence, but maybe someone knew they were on the site, and then chose to push an advert to them on Facebook. For Google Ads remarketing, it’s pretty similar, except in this case, we’re using Google Ads to send an advert to them, and we’re using the GDN (Google Display Network). The GDN is a collection of millions of websites that have partnered with Google to show ads.

remarketing an ice cream

follow me as we trace google’s cookies

Continuing with the Travel journey from the article on Display Ads (#4 in the Search explained journey), I made a point of searching for “travel maldives” and “book safari” (and plenty else) online, within Chrome, while logged in, and then browsed a few travel sites, and then waited to see who has remarketing set up. Remember, first I got this advert with the ship, and then later on, I got an advert to book a Safari.

This is very, very clever, not because it would take a rocket scientist to put it all together (though with stricter privacy looming, maybe it will soon) but because imagine 30 years ago visiting a Grocery store, then a butcher, then a travel agent, then two more stores, a library, and then crossing the street to the dentist (you’ve had that nagging pain, and your medical aid covers it, but you’re unsure… do you want your dentist to notice that pain au chocolat nestled in your molars?) and lo and behold, on the sidewalk is an advert for that butcher you went to 25 minutes ago! What the hell!? How did they know I was considering those lamb chops for the Sunday lunch?!

And that, my friends, is the whole point: they know you. Creepily so. These ads can also appear within Gmail – which really freaks people out. From my side, I say that if you aren’t paying anything, you can’t complain. There is a popular saying in the tech world (not sure you can call it an adage, just yet) and it goes: ‘If you’re not paying for a product, you are the product’. Boom. 

If you are comfortable with using this strategy (remarketing) then get in touch with me to learn how to go about it properly, knowing full well that it might actually be of help both to you and to many of your clients. There are ways of not being creepy, and rather being downright helpful. 

To work out what you need to do, you/we will need a strategy – something a lot of clients I have worked with (or even currently work with) sadly do not have. As mentioned elsewhere: start with search ads, then move to remarketing via the Display Network (GDN), then add general Display Ads, and then perhaps if it suits, use the Google Merchant Centre for: Shopping Ads.

One display ad

I’ve helped a few businesses with remarketing Ads but not enough; everyone needs to see and utilise their value.


“What Mike did for us was far beyond our hopes. We saw fourfold growth in enquiries within weeks because of our new, higher ranking.”

Pippa, Wildeflower

If you would like to see similar results and grow both your visitor numbers and conversions, then please do get in touch.