Ecommerce Stats: Hard Facts You Can Use to Boost Conversion in 2017 [+INFOGRAPHIC]

It’s not only your numbers you need to know in order to have a rock solid strategy.

You have to think ahead in ecommerce: you need to know the trends, the benchmarks, the most recent industrial statistics to be able not only to maintain growth but also to realize how you can outstrip your competitors.

 

We’re going to talk about the following:

  • The turnover of online commerce is steeply increasing
  • Average conversion and efficiency of the channels
    • How do the channels perform?
    • Mobile vs. tablet vs. desktop
    • Why do people switch to desktop when making the purchase?
    • Increasing risks
    • Segmenting conversion
  • How can you increase conversion (according to the statistics)?
    • The importance of communication
    • That’s why it’s worth tying the customer to you
    • A little help with segmentation
    • Why is social media important for you?
    • Why do people abandon the cart in your shop?
    • Is email your most powerful tool?
  • How to interpret the numbers?

 

The turnover of online commerce is steeply increasing

 

At the end of 2016 there are 3.7 billion internet users in the world, which means that approx. 50% of the total population have access to online services. More than 1 billion of them have already purchased products or services on the internet. (Furthermore, according to Invesp’s data, 80% of the online population have already used the internet to buy something, 50% of them did that more than once.)

The global turnover of ecommerce amounted to 1.55 trillion dollars already in 2015, in 2016 on the other hand, according to the Worldwide Retail Ecommerce Sales: The eMarketer Forecast for 2016 report it can reach even $1.9 trillion – which forecasts a 23.7% growth.

The trend is not going to break in the future either. According to the analysts, a global ecommerce turnover of $3.4 trillion is expected for 2019 and that of $4 trillion for 2020, obviously, mainly at the expense of brick-and-mortar stores.

 

Average conversion and efficiency of the channels

 

The database of Compass includes the data of merchants realizing a turnover of 13 billion dollars out of the global turnover of the ecommerce sector. The most recent 2016 data show that the average conversion rate in ecommerce is currently 1.33%.

This proportion is significantly higher in case of the best performing 10% with an average conversion of 3.6%.

 

How do the channels perform?

 

The analysis of the sources of the turnover also highlighted interesting facts.

One is in connection with organic turnover: while the average conversion rate is below the average (1.18%) here as well, it jumps above it (3.7%) in the best performing 10%. In case of direct turnover, the average is close to the average CR (1.46%), but this source of turnover performs highly better (3.98%) in the “elite group” here as well.

However, the most outstanding is still email.

Both on average and in case of the best online stores, the newsletters resulted in almost three times as high a conversion rate as the average CR: 3.84 and 9.89 percent, respectively.

This also proves that email is still the most powerful weapon in the hands of online marketing professionals, it simply cannot be left out of a well-built strategy, as you can count on a huge return if you use it.

Looking at the conversion rates on average, obviously doesn’t provide much substantial information. It reflects the effectiveness of the channels well, but the proportion of conversion of the various audiences on the individual markets depends on a lot of variables.

It depends on the product type, the campaign, the specific offer, the type of the audience, and so on.

 

According to another resource, the average conversion rates are the following:

  • 1% in case of new visitors
  • 5% in case of returning visitors
  • And the cart abandonment rate is 71.3%

 

This also shows how much even the surveys working with large samples and population can differ from each other. You can find somewhat different numbers at BigCommerce as well, the average conversion rate is between 2 and 3 percent according to their measurements.

 

Mobile vs. tablet vs. desktop

 

We can’t avoid looking at the individual types of devices one by one – the revolution, by the end of which mobile devices will dominate almost every field, is currently ongoing, regarding most of the metrics they have already swept the desktop from its throne, even if only marginally.

In 2016 the average conversion rates were the following.

In case of products cheaper than 100 dollars:

  • mobile 1.96%
  • tablet 2.72%
  • desktop 3.99%

 

In case of products priced between 100 and 175 dollars:

  • mobile 1.15%
  • tablet 2.25%
  • desktop 2.89%

 

In case of products more expensive than 175 dollars:

  • mobile 1.14%
  • tablet 1.73%
  • desktop 2.42%

 

It’s quite clear that the conversion rates in case of mobile still don’t really come close to those in case desktop computers, even though there’s no major reason for that nowadays, when everyone browses products and online shops on their mobiles.

 

The problem is rather that the merchants can’t keep up: newer and newer technologies keep emerging that also influence the mobile purchasing behaviour, however, building them into the purchasing process takes time. The majority of the merchants can react only within months or even years, and there are a shockingly lot of people who don’t even try to pick up the pace.

 

There are still some serious problems in the field of mobile optimization, despite the fact that today this is a primary criterion in the searches. Many web pages are still unable to load within 2 seconds, even though the majority of the users think they shouldn’t wait any longer than that for a web page to appear on their mobile.

If it takes only a second longer for your web page to load, the conversion can immediately drop by 7%, and if it takes more than 3 seconds in total for your page to load, you’ve already lost 40% of the visitors. On the other hand, if you decrease the load speed of the page from 8 to 2 seconds, you can increase conversion by 74%.

Only the fact that the web pages load slowly, results in an estimated loss of 500 billion dollars for the American ecommerce sector. It’s true that this is not always up to the online store, many times the hosting service provider simply can’t serve the increased traffic properly.

 

Why do people switch to desktop when making a purchase?

 

A report of Adobe Mobile highlights why exactly a lot of customers rather switch to desktop to make the purchase – namely, why they start the process on mobile and then finish it on desktop instead.

30% of them do so because they can use the given page more easily, can navigate on it more simply on desktop. In case of 26% of them, wanting to view the images in a bigger size (on a bigger screen) plays an important factor in the shift. By the way, this also shows how important high quality images are. Further 16% of them is less willing to purchase from the mobile because they can provide the payment information on the desktop more easily.

According to the data of Custora Ecommerce Pulse the share of desktop decreased by 5 percent (from 72 to 67 percent) between 2015 and 2016, while mobile increased from 18% to 24%. The trend is quite clear, still, even in case of such a spectacular growth it’s obvious that most of the e-merchants are unprepared, they don’t serve the needs of the users on the small screen.

Those who visit an ecommerce store on mobile, typically do that with a weaker purchase intention than those who do this from desktop. (you can read about segmentation based on intention in this earlier article.)

 

It makes sense, since people use their mobile rather for browsing, searching: when they have a free moment they remember to check out how much a given product costs, or perhaps to get to know more about something they saw on the street or in a commercial. They collect information but are not yet ready for an immediate purchase.

 

In the near future, the fact that a great number of online shops start using shorter and simpler checkout processes, thus improving the user experience, is what may have the biggest effect on this trend.

 

Increasing risks in ecommerce

 

Parallel to ecommerce playing an increasingly important role in the world economy, you obviously need to take new risks into account. Online stores need to pay special attention to security, to building a trustworthy brand, say the analysts of Rippleshot, since there are more and more web pages that try to get some money by misusing the data of the customers purchasing from mobile.

Although the technology for safe payment is already available, biometric scanning for example can be found in most new smart phones, the users are not really willing to use these for the time being.

Frauds are working with more and more sophisticated techniques, they hide in applications that help them obtain passwords, take people’s money, and they also take advantage of the fact that the majority of the users are not cautious enough while using their mobile.

For these reasons, operators of ecommerce stores have to pay special attention to make sure that the users consider them trustworthy.

Besides providing secure payment methods, this can be ensured by continuous two-way communication and transparency, and the availability of proper information concerning the ordering process.

 

Segmenting conversion

 

If you want to understand better how the different user groups use your online shop, you have to apply segmentation during the analytics process. We’ve already written in detail about segmentation, therefore, the only thing we are now going to review is which main groups you should study in order to be able to begin optimization.

First of all, you need to know how big the average conversion among the new, the returning and the registered customers in your ecommerce store is.

 

tips Tip: After this, you should examine how the different sources of traffic perform – how efficient, for example, Facebook or Instagram is, what proportion of those visitors purchase who found you using organic search etc.

 

Of course it’s worth examining the searches separately as well, you need to know for which keywords and search terms your shop is found (this will help you have more efficient SEO and will also help with advertisements).

Also monitor how the individual product categories perform. You don’t have to be discouraged because of a lower conversion rate either: if the conversion is only half in case of a ten times more expensive product, your revenues will still be higher.

Finally, you’ll certainly have to study how the individual campaigns performed, e.g.:

  • periodic promotions,
  • special events,
  • product launches,
  • the campaigns specifically targeted to the individual channels, etc.

 

It’s worthwhile for you to review these data at least once in a quarter, and to further fine-tune your strategy based on that.

 

Now let’s see the infographic in which we highlight those figures that are of high importance when creating your business startegy for next year: 

 

ecommerce stats

 

Cool infographic, isn’t it?

If you find it useful, please share it by clicking on one of the social site icons.

Which figure is most amazing to you? Write your comment at the end. Thanks!

 

How can you increase conversion (according to the statistics)?

 

One of the best techniques with which you can persuade many people into purchasing is to offer free delivery. Even if you calculate it into your prices, simply offering free delivery will encourage 9 out of 10 users to purchase.

Personalized offers are of vital importance – both inside and outside the online shop, that’s why it’s essential that you use retargeting properly. Statistics show that by making personalized offers to your audience you may increase the average conversion rate on average 5.5 times over.

According to the British statistics, approximately one third of the customers mentioned visibility of the brand (34%) and social interactions (38%) as the reasons for shopping in a given ecommerce store.

 

The importance of communication

 

The importance of communication is also represented in the surveys of Nielsen-McKinsey, according to which 17% of the consumers would recommend a brand specifically because it efficiently helps them in solving a problem – even if it does that slowly.

At the same time, 33% of them would also recommend a brand that responds quickly, but the provided solution is not necessarily effective. With the quick responses you can present yourself as being helpful, however, in the long run you may end up better off striving for efficiency, because like that, you can more easily educate return customers who trust you more. (Yet, obtaining a new customer will cost you 5 to 25 times more than persuading a loyal one into anotherpurchase.)

The image you show about yourself and what your customer service is like, may influence significantly how much people like shopping in your store – which is especially important, because nowadays, 40% of the customers check 3 or even more shops out when they want to buy something. According to 73% of them, it’s friendly communication and helpful customer service, and according to 55% of them, it’s readily available information is what helps them choose a given brand during online shopping.

 

And what should you do about those who have already purchased from you earlier but had a negative experience?You have to pay special attention to your customer service.

First of all: if a customer doesn’t get enough help, it’s 4 times more likely that he will purchase from your competitor in the end. However, if you are capable of solving their complaints effectively, 70% of them will be willing to return to you and buy from you again.

Furthermore, they are even willing to pay for a better customer service: 86% of the customers are willing to purchase at a higher price (even by 25%) in an online shop in exchange for a better user experience, the big proportion of which is the result of the kind of information they are provided with, and of how helpful you are with them.

 

That’s why it’s worth tying the customer to you

 

The best technique you can follow is not trying to reach new customers, but paying special attention to keeping the old ones.

But at the same time, you should also monitor the cart value: according to McKinsey, on the American market the average cart value in case of the first purchase is 24.5 dollars, the returning customers on the other hand spend an average 52.5 dollars per purchase in your store.

(You should use RFM segmentation that we mentioned in our article on segmentation. By using that, you can learn how often the returning customers purchase from you again, and you can develop more effective campaigns to address them.)

The various loyalty programmes work quite well for example, if you want people to spend more in your shop: customers, who are part of such programmes, spend on average 13% more than those who are not members.

  • You don’t necessarily need to think of offering discounts in these cases: sometimes it’s also enough if you come up with exclusive content, if you make certain pieces of content available for only the members, and so on. This way you won’t reduce your income, however, you’ll build trust towards your brand.
  • But if you award points, that also works: bonus points can bring you even 20% more visits a year from the returning customers. You should also bear in mind that if you don’t have any kind of loyalty programme, you are indeed lagging behind your competitors – members of an American household for example are members of 8.4 loyalty programmes on average.
  • You can award points not only for a purchase: you can reward customers for other actions as well, for example when recruiting new members, or when simply sharing your products, your pieces of content, or when sending you feedback or making product ratings.
  • We shouldn’t forget about coupons: 55% of the American internet users redeem coupons they receive on social media sites. Obviously, mobile coupons are the most efficient, which is not surprising: in 2016 already 83% of all the digital coupons were used through smart phones.

 

75% of the customers in total have already redeemed some kind of a coupon at least once. This clearly indicates that it’s worthwhile for you to use an online store engine that supports coupon deals, because by using those, you can efficiently increase the willingness to purchase.

 

A little help with segmentation

 

In addition to monitoring your own audience, you should also pay attention to what tendencies are dominating the market, because this will help you plan campaigns that effectively address audiences that are new and unknown for you.

Did you know that while less than one fifth (18%) of women have already bought some kind of a product or service by using their mobile phones, this proportion in case of men is noticeably higher (22%)?

You should also make sure to please those who purchase from tablets. Statistics show that there’s still a greater chance of the customers’ conversion on tablets than in case of smart phones. And they also spend more than those who arrive on the page from desktops.

Social responsibility may also be a factor for certain groups: 50% of the parents belonging to the Y generation for example, specifically like to shop at places where they also support some kind of a charitable purpose by spending their money.

Yet this is the age group that’s worth targeting the most: The “millennial” segment spends online annually more than any other one.

And of course, they make their purchases online. Thanks to the data of BI Intelligence, we know the following about the people belonging to the Y generation:

  • 43% of men and 31% of women typically purchase on auction sites
  • 40% of men and 33% of women would rather buy everything online
  • 30% of men and 28% of women purchase online typically through mobile phones

 

Approximately one fourth of them enthusiastically use the applications of the different online shops.

 

It’s always worthwhile for you to use applications: not only can your customers shop more effectively and pay more safely through these, but another big advantage of their use is that you can even address them with push messages any time, thus drawing their attention to the current sales offers that are for them.

 

Why is social media important for you?

 

If our previous articles haven’t yet convinced you that you need to build a significant online social media presence, the following statistics will definitely do.

The number of online sales realized through social media is increasing annually in total. Professionals predict a growth of approximately 50-80% for 2017.

According to the statistics of Invesp, no less than 5% of the global ecommerce turnover was generated by the social media already in 2015. This is partly thanks to the fact that nowadays you have the possibility of direct selling on most of the popular networking sites.

For example if you’d like to launch an online store within your own platform on Pinterest or on Facebook, you can do that without having too many difficulties.

And if you are present on social networking sites, you shouldn’t use it only for marketing. Yes, we are now emphasizing the importance of communication again, and that’s for a reason: 43% of the most valuable age group (18 to 29 years of age) use the social platforms of brands for customer service type conversations.

And your competitors haven’t yet outstripped you for good: according to the Harvard Business Review only 12% of the companies feel they are efficiently taking advantage of the opportunities provided by the social media.

 

Why do people abandon the cart in your shop?

 

tips Attention!: At present, approximately 75% of the customers leave the cart, that is, they choose products but don’t buy them in the end. According to some estimations, this proportion can reach as high as 90% in the next few years!

 

For this very reason, most online shops should use every tool to minimalize cart abandonment. Let’s see the most common reasons why your customers don’t make it to the check-out according to the numbers:

  • 56% of the users tend to check out without payment due to unexpected costs
  • 37% of them don’t yet have a strong enough purchasing intention, they are “just looking around”, as we say
  • 36% of them abandon their cart if they find a better offer elsewhere (at one of your competitors)
  • 32% of them don’t pay because they consider the total value too high
  • 13% are not willing to pay because the price is not displayed in their own currency
  • 25% of them abandon the cart if navigation on a page is too complicated
  • 15% abandon the cart if the page is too slow, if it doesn’t load in time
  • 24% abandon the cart if the webpage simply doesn’t appear

 

You can find out what you should do based on the following:

  • Information should always be available and clear: don’t hide any costs, in fact, the customer should always be able to see the total amount of their cart.
  • Make a quick and easily usable webpage where navigation doesn’t spoil user experience.
  • Always make sure that purchasing is as simple as possible: if you can leave a step out of the payment process, you should do so. The shorter the path, the better.

 

The data of Statista also show the reasons why people don’t purchase from you:

  • 61% of them don’t purchase because you don’t provide a good enough warranty
  • 44% because of the too high delivery costs
  • 22% because you don’t display the delivery costs at the appropriate place
  • 6% of them don’t purchase because the delivery is not fast enough

 

The issues concerning delivery play an important role, as the users visit a lot of shops where they can simply buy the product and take it home. They want to get what they want cheaply and quickly, and you have to respect that.

 

Is email your most powerful tool?

 

Most probably.

The longer the email list you have and the more you segment your offers, the more the returns will be after you run your email campaigns.

 

  • In case of a list of 5 thousand people you can achieve a 21.38% open rate, but only an average 2.76 orders.
  • On the other hand, in case of a list of more than 50 thousand people you can expect to get 34.69 purchase orders even if the average open rate is only 8.64% here.

 

The best is if you send out letters once or twice a month, that’s how you’ll most probably achieve the highest average open rate (25.24%) and conversion rate (0.27%). If you send out electronic letters, you should do that in the second half of the month, sometime between the 16th and the 20th, because that’s when the conversion rate is usually the highest.

The users open the greeting letters (45.67%), the promotion letters (18.8%) and the letters sent due to cart abandonment (47.1%) in the highest proportion. The conversion is the highest (4.64%) in the last case.

 

How to interpret the numbers?

Find the ones that are most relevant for you.

Does your campaign concentrate enough on the effective channels, tools, on the most lucrative segments?

Are there any problems with your page that typically lead to cart abandonment or to the visitors not opening your page at all?

Start from here, make your own measurements, and you can make sure that you’ll start the next year more prepared than your competitors.

 

Facebook for eCommerce – How to Multiply Your Sales Today

That’s a big mistake. Because nowadays Facebook is a tool for reaching your target audience at a relatively low cost.

We’ll show you how to make advertisements, how to target, how to follow your customers and what kind of strategy it’s worth using, while avoiding the biggest blunders.

 

In this article you can read about the following:

  • Build your page smartly
    • What should you post?
    • How frequently?
  • Create a Facebook Store
  • About Facebook Pixel
    • Follow your individual audience
    • Follow those who convert
    • Define individual events
  • How to define the target groups?
    • Reach your already established audience
    • Find people similar to them
    • Concentrate on mobile!
  • The most effective tools
    • Use dynamic advertisements
    • Use video advertisements
    • Communicate actively with your customers
  • A proven strategy
  • Trends that you should be aware of
    • Mobile is at the forefront of ecommerce
    • DPAs bring higher returns
    • Native pieces of content are very popular
    • Videos becoming trendier
  • How to manage your budget?
  • The biggest mistakes you can make when creating a Facebook ad
    • You don’t target properly
    • You want to sell a too expensive product
    • You place your ads improperly
  • I have good news for you

 

Build your page smartly

 

What should you post?

 

First of all, you will obviously need a Facebook business page that will represent your brand.

It does make a difference what kind of content you upload on this page. The ecommerce stores that are present in social media at all, usually try to reach their audience with various sales and games. However, these are boring, not too many people trust them, and even Facebook is unwilling to display them.

Today Facebook users run through their timeline an average 14 times a day. This shows posts in an already filtered way, and you can be sure that if what you share is not interesting enough for those who like you, they won’t waste a fraction of a second on you.

Consequently, in everyday life you need to deal with things that they are also interested in. Publish a mixture of references, photos and simple text posts.

Look for topics just like in case of blogging: find out what people ask from each other within customer groups, relevant professional groups, monitor what kind of questions arrive to your customer service. Don’t focus on what you want to sell them, but on how you can help them in the given moment, how you can make their lives a easier.

 

How frequently should you post?

 

We don’t have a definite answer to that question – but just like in the case of email marketing, you have to follow the middle way. If you publish 5 or 6 posts within a day, your reach will be minimal, unless you have an incredibly committed and active audience who hang on your every word.

On the other hand, if you post too rarely, you’ll be forgotten, activity on your page will decrease and that will lead to the further decline of your organic reach. A direct consequence of this is that if you want to reach a larger audience again afterwards, you’ll have to invest a lot of time and money into doing that.

Experience shows that one or two posts a day are still fine, provided you actually create them smartly.

 

Create a Facebook Store

 

On the page, you have the chance of creating your own online store directly within the platform. This is obviously good for Facebook as this way the visitors don’t leave the page, they don’t have to be redirected outside Facebook’s own interface.

And it’s good for you because you can advertise more efficiently, you can gain a lot of relevant data and can sell directly, thus shortening the customer path.

tips We need to mention the importance of speed here: the average users, after clicking on a piece of content pointing outside Facebook, arrive at the given page in an average 8 seconds. However, most people consider 2 seconds to be the fair time period for waiting – as a consequence, if it takes too long to get to a page, a great deal of those who click will bounce off.

You can create such a store within your Facebook business page. The process is not specifically simple, however, with the help of a more experienced professional, you shouldn’t have difficulties with it either.

If you want to choose the simplest solution, all you have to do is find an extension that automatically connects your products with the Facebook store. The advantage of this is that when you change your products in some way on your page (let’s say you change the description or the price), these changes will automatically be displayed on the social media interface as well.

You can find such extensions to Shopify, BigCommerce, Magento and to practically all of the more professional ecommerce store engines.

For the sake of simplification, I suggest you use the help of a professional in any case: the comfort lying in automation will definitely be worth the investment, and you can also be sure that you won’t make any mistakes due to lack of experience.

 

About Facebook Pixel

 

Just like most of the advertising platforms, Facebook also uses following pixels for the advertisements, including retargeting advertisements. This basically marks the given potential clients visiting your page with the help of a cookie. This way you can follow their actions, and target them in the future with the most relevant offers.

This has been significantly simplified on Facebook in 2016: a single pixel has been introduced instead of the two different types, called Facebook Pixel.

With the help of this, you can do the following:

 

You follow your individual audience

The pixel can follow everyone who visits the page and is at the same time logged in to Facebook. The system will record which pages they visit and when. You can select groups based on that information:

  • those who visited you within the last 24 hours
  • those who visited you within the last 30-180 days
  • those who visited a given page of yours
  • those who visited a given page of yours but have not visited another particular one

 

Of course you can somewhat customize that, you can set the time intervals. By using this, you can efficiently monitor cart abandoners and those who bounce off as well.

 

You follow those who convert

If you place the pixel on the greeting page as well, you can draw up a list of those who actually purchased from you. This is very useful because you can retarget them after a certain time – for instance when the lifetime of the given purchased product ends, and you remind them it’s time they bought a new one.

 

You define individual events

A new, more developed feature is that you define various events. You can follow the users according to their behaviour by doing that – for example those who visit a landing page, launch a search on your page, those who add products to their carts, and so on.

You can target them with very precise messages, while also paying attention to ensuring message match – you can offer a one-time immediate discount for instance to those who searched on the product, visited the page but did not convert.

After having generated it, you have to place the pixel, or rather its code, in the head of the page. We won’t go into details about that because Facebook itself walks you through the process perfectly.

 

How to define the target groups?

 

Reach your already established audience

 

You’ll have a lot of opportunities on Facebook to determine to whom you want to advertise. You can set individual and lookalike target groups.

 

An individual audience is especially useful: you can upload some of your segmented lists into the database, and the system of the social media site will find them based on the email addresses, provided that the user accounts have been connected to the same email addresses.

 

Like that you can retarget those for example who registered to your list due to one of your bait products, or who registered to your page. This way you can display exclusive, well-targeted offers to them and, based on which list they are on, you will also know which offer and which tone it is most probably worth using with them. (Read our article on remarketing and retargeting if you haven’t yet done so.)

It’s good because it reduces your advertising costs: you can advertise to those who are most likely to convert after having seen a given offer, in other words, waste coverage will be minimal.

 

Find people similar to them

 

Obviously, you probably also want to expand the group of your customers. Once you’ve done segmentation, Facebook will be able to work perfectly based on your defined individual audience: it will assess the profiles found, and will look for users, based on the pre-set parameters, who are similar to them.

The system typically takes into account the interests and the demographic data at the definition of the lookalike target group.

 

Concentrate on mobile!

 

In 2015 people used various applications in 90% of the time when they were using mobile phones.

Not surprisingly, the users spent most of the time in Facebook’s application.

There are a lot of people who almost completely live their online social life here:

  • they share,
  • they like,
  • they chat in Messenger,
  • they make friends in groups
  • or share tips in groups,
  • they ask questions from each other, etc.

 

The number of those who click through is also high: by the end of 2015 the CTR in case of mobile users was already twice as high as that in case of those browsing from desktops, and the increase is still dynamic.

So when you are making advertisements or planning campaigns, try to target mainly those who come across your advertisements while using mobile phones.

 

tips Remember: Pay attention to analytics in the meantime. Make sure that most people who read your content are doing that from mobile devices, and that a sufficiently large proportion of the visitors of your page are mobile users.

 

The most effective tools

 

Use dynamic advertisements

 

We’ve just mentioned retargeting. We wrote about how you should organize such a campaign, and now we’re going to let you know how exactly you can use this tool on Facebook.

Dynamic advertisements (Dynamic Product Ads, DPA) represent the solution. With the help of the following pixel placed on your Facebook page you can mark those who carried out different actions on it – for example they viewed the products of a certain category.

If they didn’t convert, you can target them with a message that lures them back to you. You can indicate it to them that the cart is still there, all they have to do is make the payment, or you can also offer them some kind of immediate discount, provided they promptly purchase the product they inquired about earlier.

 

Use video advertisements

 

We’ve already written quite a lot about the power of videos as well – you can benefit a lot from them also on Facebook.

There are multiple reasons for that. One is that according to the official data of the networking site, video advertisements are able to reach your target audience 25 percent cheaper, you get a click on average that much cheaper. This is not too surprising, as you can grab attention with a video much more easily than with a static advertisement.

The data also show that video advertisements run with an average return of 175%.

Of course you need to make good videos to be able to achieve that. On the one hand, you should take into account that longer videos are viewed from beginning to the end by only a very few people. Think in a one-minute long time period at maximum, a relatively lot of people will be willing to view that much. And at the same time, write scripts that capture their attention from the very first moment and don’t let it go until the end of the video.

 

In order to realize that, it’s not enough to simply present a product or an action: you’ll have to use the techniques of storytelling and target the emotions of your target audience.

 

And don’t forget to subtitle the video either: many people start the video without sound, so if you don’t have subtitles, the talking is wasted, your main message can be lost.

 

Communicate actively with your customers

 

One of the greatest things about using Facebook is that you can communicate with your customers in the most direct way possible. They can simply send you messages through the page, moreover, if you’re smart, you’ll build a closed group for your registered customers, where you’ll be able to communicate with them actively.

It’s worthwhile for you to promptly and actually answer the questions and the inquiries. Not only because your customers will be satisfied if you do so, but also because in case of the corporate pages, Facebook monitors what your response time looks like, and it even displays the result.

If people see that you respond within a couple of minutes in the majority of the cases, they will be more willing to ping you – you will obtain more information like that and you’ll have a greater chance of convincing the individual customers. Of course, after having reached a certain level, you may need to hire a separate social media manager to be able to realize that, but you can be entirely sure that it’ll be worth it.

You should write down the incoming information and questions just like you do in case of your customer service. That’s how you’ll know

  • what part of your given campaigns are worth fine-tuning,
  • what you should post,
  • what kind of pieces of content are worth publishing
  • and what kind of questions you should answer.

 

A proven Facebook strategy

 

Selling on Facebook is not easy. It is much more difficult to create profitable advertisements here than in Google’s system. There’s a very simple reason for that: the diversity of the audience’s intentions.

If you target the right keywords with your advertisements in Google’s system, you’ll reach people who have strong, specific purchase intentions. On Facebook, on the other hand, the most you can hope for is a weak purchase intention, or even none at all. (You can read more about segmentation by intention in our writing covering the mysteries of ecommerce segmentation.)

 

tips Suggestion: an advertisement directly urging for a purchase will be less efficient. It’s much more worthwhile for you to build a complete customer funnel.

 

The following technique has worked for a lot of people already, and although it requires a noticeably higher energy input, we can only advise you to try it:

  1. Concentrate on content-based advertisements. Create a piece of content that’s useful and valuable for the target audience, and try not to sell anything at first. Write an article that is somewhat related to your products or services, but the focus should be on the things that the users are interested in, on their problems.
  2. It’s great if they have clicked through to your page, but you shouldn’t try to reach for their wallets just then either. You won’t yet create the purchase intention with the valuable piece of content, only the interest. You should rather create a bait product: a relevant ebook for example in which the consumers of the given content may be interested enough to download it.
  3. Obviously, you shouldn’t offer it for free: ask for their email addresses and names in return. And you can start list building right away. You can offer the download at the end of the piece of content.
  4. You can then work with this list. You can send automated emails to the users, you can communicate with them actively, and of course you can build an individual audience from them on Facebook, like we described earlier. At this point you’ll have a much greater chance of conversion, as you can build your offer nice and slow.

 

Conclusion: don’t focus on a single tool, otherwise your return will be low. You should set up a complete customer funnel instead, in which you can steer the more and more committed leads with stronger and stronger purchase intention with the help of multiple, coherent campaigns.

 

Ecommerce trends that you should be aware of

Some tips for managing your campaigns more effectively: we are going to outline a couple of very recent trends that will help you with the formulation and the targeting of your messages.

  1. Mobile is at the forefront of ecommerce

We’ve already mentioned that you must pay special attention mobile devices. Nowadays the click-through rate is twice as high as in the case of desktop, and there’s almost a tie even in the number of purchases as well. It’s quite clear already that the share of mobile will continue to grow in the upcoming years as well.

  1. DPAs bring higher returns

The return of dynamic advertisements (which we have also mentioned) is usually higher than that of traditional advertising techniques, mainly thanks to retargeting. More people notice personalized advertisements, they also make more people click through and convert as well. And that’s also a growing trend.

  1. Native pieces of content are very popular

More and more native pieces of content start to appear on Facebook – supporting content, the goal of which is sales promotion, which also offer value at the same time and which appear on the timeline just like the liked pages and the shares of friends. You should also invest in this, because experience shows that quite good results can be achieved like that, this can be for example the starting point of the funnel outlined above.

  1. Videos are becoming trendy

In the last few years, video has shown a huge increase among mobile advertising costs. We’re talking about a 20-50 percent expansion here, and it’s not by chance that companies and agencies spend so much on that. Take the pieces of advice described above (and read our related pieces of content) in order to make good videos, and follow the trend yourself, too.

 

How to manage your budget?

 

When you plan a campaign, always outline multiple options. Test various advertisements and product categories. Obviously, it’s not worthwhile for you to advertise all of your products at the same time – don’t pour your money unnecessarily into advertising the less popular and cheap products.

Monitor how much one click costs you in case of the individual advertisements. Launch the campaigns at first with lower budgets, running parallel to each other for similar audiences, and watch how they perform.

Keep an eye on the statistics of the page as well: it may happen that you get clicks more expensively in a given case, but at the same time, a higher proportion of the leads convert, the cart value of their purchase is higher, and so on.

Yes, this means that you’ll have to spend a lot of time examining the analytics. However, that’s the only way you’ll be able to plan actually effective campaigns, which may then run with multiple return. You shouldn’t push what doesn’t work, trust the experiences.

 

The biggest mistakes you can make when creating a Facebook ad

 

You don’t target properly

 

If you don’t set your audience properly, you’ll simply throw money down the drain. The magic of Facebook is the one billion active users, but that’s not because you’ll have to reach everybody.

Nowadays online interfaces are more and more used for advertising, for selling exactly because even though the reach was huge in case of traditional advertising (for example on TV), the waste coverage was also huge. Companies paid to reach millions – among whom there were only a precious few who were actually interested in the given product or service.

 

tips Tip: you should definitely start with thorough segmentation, with the establishment of buyer personas. You have to find the appropriate audience, you’ll have to plan targeted messages for them, and then you’ll have to test those. You should only reach out for those who are actually likely to become your customers later.

 

You want to sell a too expensive product

 

According to the researches people have two main motivations to use Facebook. One of them is that they’d like to feel that they belong to a community, the other is that they’d like to show themselves to others.

Wanting to purchase is not included in this anywhere.

Of course you can persuade the audience into purchasing, but to achieve that, you’ll most probably need tools similar to the funnel outlined above.

Keep in mind that the interface is not ideal for the selling of all kinds of products.

If you want to sell too expensive products or services, you’ll have a more difficult job, as you can’t target directly on the purchase intent.

It’s worthwhile for you to take the customer into the funnel with pieces of content, with bait products or with your cheaper products at first – the bigger offer can come later in email, or even on the phone or any other way that brings the highest return according to your experience. However, you won’t sell a car efficiently with a Facebook advertisement, that’s for sure.

 

You place your ads improperly

 

You can choose from various positions on the platform, depending on whether you want to display the advertisement on the sidebar or on the timeline, whether you’d rather advertise on desktop or on mobile.

So it’s good to know that each of these positions are suitable for different things. For example, according to the experiences, the advertisements appearing in the right sidebar work well on desktop if you run a high-reach marketing campaign. You also have to bear in mind that the size of the image is quite small here, and if you display the same image parallel on the timeline, that may reduce its efficiency.

You should appear on the timeline only if you are working with a strongly targeted audience, you’ll see better click-through rates and activity indicators in that case.

It’s worthwhile for you to appear on the timeline in almost all cases – it was not by chance that we emphasized how much it’s worth concentrating on the mobile devices. Experience shows that the advertisements appearing in the application’s timeline bring good results practically every time (provided of course that the campaign is smartly targeted and the advertisement is actually good).

 

I have good news for you

At the moment there are a ridiculously few online shops that actually exploit the potential lying within Facebook.

Most people simply show advertisements – and then they don’t understand why their products are not bought by the people who are not targeted in any way and have no purchase intention whatsoever.

You can become the leader of your market if you take the time and budget and build complete customer funnels based on specific strategies. For this, you will need to make analyses, will have to do a lot of planning and dig into analytics, and you’ll most probably need the help of a professional as well.

Even then it will definitely be worth it, because you can multiply your conversion on the most popular social networking platform using the techniques described above.

You can be the one who doesn’t reach for the wallet but who helps his shoppers: someone that people are willing to turn to, who they know and trust. And thus you can become the one who the competitors will try to catch up with in the upcoming years, even if you’re only setting up your Facebook strategy just now.

 

Retargeting marketing in ecommerce: basics + 13 Retargeting Methods & Bonus Case Studies to Boost your Conversion

Retargeting and remarketing have been the buzzwords of the last couple of years in marketing.

Everybody talks about these techniques, but few people can apply them properly – and most people don’t even know what the difference is between retargeting and remarketing.

For this very reason, we are trying to clarify the concepts, we are giving hints for the planning of efficient retargeting and remarketing campaigns, and we are introducing specific examples of how you can use all this to increase your online store’s turnover.

 

To see the 13 retargeting techniques + case studies right now, click here!

 

You can read about the following in the 1st part of this article:

  • What is retargeting? What is retargeting marketing?
  • Retargeting or remarketing?
  • How should you use retargeting?
    • Cross-sell and up-sell
    • What is a good retargeting message like?
    • Do segmentation (smartly)
    • Don’t rely on a single channel
  • Your proper retargeting techniques
  • How NOT to do it
  • Retargeting is a powerful tool, however…

 

What is retargeting? What is retargeting marketing?

 

Retargeting, or retargeting marketing, means repeated targeting: with its help you can mark your potential customers who visit your pages, thus gaining information on them, so that you’ll know where they are exactly, when they load a page that can be linked to the given advertisement network.

And this will allow you to display more relevant retargeting ads to them.

In order to be able to realize this, you have to incorporate a tracking pixel or a list of codes into your sites, that marks the users who download the given page.

It stores a cookie in their browsers, which will notify the advertisement system when they are, for example, on a page belonging to Google Display Network.

 

Example There’s an average user, John, who is on your page and views a certain product, but he doesn’t purchase. The system stores this information and when John arrives on a page where you advertise, the same product will appear to him that he has not purchased earlier, however, this time with a small discount.

 

Consequently, retargeting gives you a chance to

  • persuade those to purchase who have just been looking around in your store,
  • offer relevant products to those who have already purchased from you,
  • display special offers to the returning customers.

 

We are talking about an extremely valuable tool here: before technology made it possible, there was no way to approach subsequently the potential customers who have visited our page, viewed our products, having their first experience with us, because they did not give us any of their data.

You can give them a relevant experience with retargeting, in a way that they don’t feel it being pushy – provided that you use retargeting smartly. But we will talk about this in more detail below.

 

Retargeting or remarketing?

 

The two concepts sound very similar and they actually refer to similar things, but they are not identical at all:

remarketing typically means repeatedly targeting your previous customers or even cart abandoners with email campaigns.

This may be for example when somebody adds three or four products to the cart and then they exit the page without purchase, without conversion – and the system sends them a letter after a day in which it offers them the possibility of buying the products with some discount or with free delivery for a day.

So remarketing is not about displaying AdWords advertisements to the marked users: you target those with it, who you already know more about because they have already purchased from you or they have provided you with their addresses in exchange for a “bait” or hook product.

We will primarily deal with retargeting in this article, since we discussed in detail ecommerce email marketing in a separate writing.

 

retargeting marketing, remarketing in ecommerce

 

How should you use retargeting?

 

The goal is to reach  the audience again that previously bounced off your product pages – but you need to do that with relevant offers, otherwise your retargeting marketing campaign will not only be ineffective but it will have an especially negative outcome as well.

Cart abandonment is one of the biggest challenges for the operator of an online shop.

There is a good chance that those who add a given product to the cart will not buy it – at the moment the average rate is approximately 75%, but according to some estimations, in a couple of years it may even reach 90% in ecommerce.

 

There may be a lot of reasons for cart abandonment:

  • the potential buyer did not have enough money for the purchase at the time,
  • he just listed and saved for later what he would have to buy,
  • or he might have found a better offer in the meantime.

 

The aim of retargeting is to be able to reach out and grab the customers in such cases even if they have not yet added the product to the cart, they have only showed their interest by viewing the product page.

Simply by reminding them that they viewed the product you can raise their attention again – an efficient headline, some immediate discount may convince them to change their interest into conversion.

 

Cross-sell and up-sell

 

You may even guide those who have already purchased a product from you into a completely new funnel.

Let’s assume that you sell mattresses, pillows, covers and similar products – if someone buys a set of pillows from you, and you cannot convince them to buy more from you neither on the product page nor at the checkout, you can easily do that with a retargeting up-sell offer.

How? By customizing the retargeting ads. Of course your capacity is limited, so it’s worth doing this in case of the especially popular and higher value offers – in particular those where you have the greatest chance for up-sell.

So there’s your customer buying pillows – with retargeting you can show him matching pillow covers through the network, thus encouraging him for further purchase.

Bear in mind that it’s much easier to convince those who have already purchased from you earlier, as you have already done the convincing once – at this point the only thing you need to invest energy into is bringing them back to your page.

 

What is a good retargeting message like?

 

It’s not enough to simply show an image of your product, but sometimes it’s not enough even if you offer some kind of a discount or other special deals to your potential customer.

You have to use techniques like scarcity and urging. You have to create the desire in the users of wanting to buy the product from you.

You may use the power of social proof and testimonials as well, thus convincing those who did not purchase from you at first just because they haven’t yet known you.

If you have a limited stock of something and you are running out of it quickly, you shouldn’t miss out on letting those hesitating know of this.

You don’t have to be too harsh, in case they have not purchased earlier just because they wanted to consider the decision better, scarcity will convince them and in that case it’s usually enough just to raise their attention.

 

Do segmentation (smartly)

 

We have been describing so far how to guide the customer back to your product, however, this is not the only option you have when you use retargeting.

You can guide the leads to your bait items so that you can build a list, or even to your relevant pieces of content in order to have them committed by that at least since they don’t want to purchase from you.

But if you want to choose from the options, the only way of doing that right is with segmentation.

 

You have to do segmentation based on the relationship between you and the users: it does make a difference whether they’ve

  • visited you once
  • or they are returning leads,
  • whether they are already on your email list
  • or they are old customers who are just looking at a given product for some reason.

 

retargeting marketing, segmentation ecommerce

 

You have to find proper software solutions for being able to do segmentation based on this relationship, since this is what makes retargeting cost-effective.

Otherwise you can expect an enormous waste coverage: the same message never convinces everyone.

How can you find those, who are really worth retargeting?

For example, Mazda and the retargeting company Merchenta realized 53% higher conversion and 20% higher reach by their promotions by geographically narrowing down their retargeting advertising, and then by directing the customers within those segments specifically to the salesmen.

 

Don’t rely on a single channel

 

Google Display Network is the best-known example of how you can use retargeting, but it’s not at all the only one.

It’s a good start of course, but you can really take advantage of the technique only if you actively apply it in the social media as well.

Retargeting ads placed in the news feed may be exceptionally effective, because they appear natively: there is a much greater chance that the users will click, since they are browsing the news feed to find something worth clicking anyway.

You shouldn’t monitor only those who have been on your product pages: if they have visited your YouTube channel, if they’ve got to some sort of content of yours arriving from a social site, there is a good opportunity for you to make them subscribers by offering them some similar content.

 

How NOT to do it

 

No matter which technique you apply from the two (hopefully both of them), there’s something you have to avoid in any case:

Driving your potential customers crazy.

 

Example: Imagine that you view a product in an online shop – for instance a red T-shirt. It seems nice at first, but then you still decide not to buy it.

A good approach in this case if the e-merchant offers you discounts once or twice, to see whether you are just hesitating for some reason, or if they show you relevant products hoping you will like those better.

On the other hand, it’s a bad idea to show you the same red T-shirt on all the pages that you load.

This creates frustration in the customer, negative feelings towards the brand, and it will almost definitely not result in a purchase.

If you walk out of a shop without buying anything, the shop assistants will not run after you either and ask you to buy what you previously held in your hands in the shop.

 

And it’s not good for you either, because you spend your advertisement budget completely pointlessly.

Yet, inexplicably, a lot of people do that – this means there’s a field where you can be smarter than your competitors.

 

Retargeting is a powerful tool, however…

…only if you have somebody to retarget, and if you have something to offer them.

So it’s you who has to drive visitors to your pages (or at least to make a strategy in order to know where they can be monitored), and you will also need powerful product pages, good content and landing pages as well.

 

Retargeting is not a strategy: it’s part of one.

On the other hand, if you use it wisely, you can amazingly effectively increase reach, conversion rates and also the turnover of your ecommerce store as a whole.

 

13 professional retargeting techniques and practices + case studies

 

In the following you can learn about the professional tricks so that you can use retargeting for your online shop to generate more profit.

And you can also avoid the mistakes you wouldn’t even think of making in the first place…

 

This is what we’re going to talk about in the 2nd part of this article:

  • 13 retargeting methods:
    • Show something they’ve already seen earlier
    • Retarget the funnel as a whole
    • Sequential retargeting
    • Use up-sell, but smartly
    • Delayed retargeting
    • Offer something else (even less)
    • Use retargeting on YouTube
    • Is it really worthwhile for you to target everybody?
    • Target those who have only seen less recent products
    • Monitor your FAQ page
    • Show faces, familiar names
    • Be present on multiple platforms
    • Pay attention to topicalities
  • Case studies:
    • Kelley Blue Book: a good idea, realized imperfectly
    • Retargeting can also be too much of a good thing: Handy
    • Understand your visitors: Inbound Ascension
  • Even if you don’t follow anything else, you should follow at least this one…

 

 

Show something they’ve already seen earlier

 

When you do retargeting, you should stick to matching messages not only during the campaign. To be precise, you should also pay attention to the starting point, to the first visit as well.

If you want to raise the attention of the users, the most effective way of doing that is by showing them something they’ve already seen or read earlier.

 

tips Examples: If somebody purchased a sofa on your page and you want to sell them cushions, show them an image of the sofa with the cushions on it.

If they booked a room on your page for a holiday, show them something about the given location that they have definitely seen first-hand.

 

You immediately create a connection like that, and from then on, it depends only on your offer whether you can persuade them to come back to your page.

 

Retarget the funnel as a whole

 

It doesn’t matter where exactly the given consumers are in your sales funnel, you can always reach them with retargeting messages. First of all, you should read our article on segmentation, then you should examine your own funnel.

You can formulate personalized messages for everybody, including those who just know about you, have been on your page but have not yet converted, and the returning customers as well.

 

  • you can make those interested return to your page by using some kind of a bait,
  • you can turn customers into returning customers with a well-targeted offer,
  • you can educate your returning customers to become evangelists or brand ambassadors.

 

The key is to know them well enough and thus be able to sell your own funnel, to formulate the messages that address your audiences with different intentions.

We already mentioned something similar to a push-along tactic in the previous article, but if you’re really smart, you don’t target only those who are stuck, but you always try to capture those as well, who are already “in your net”, even if they are regularly returning active customers.

On the other hand, if your funnel is specifically long and complicated, you can do better than that.

 

Sequential retargeting

 

If your customers go through a complicated process, if there are a lot of possibilities and branches, you’ll benefit most from sequencing.

 

The theory is not at all complicated (in contrast with the implementation): you divide the users into different groups, not only based on where they are exactly, but also based on their actions. Just like when you’re running an email campaign: you’re sending different letters to openers, non-openers, to those who click-through, and so on.

 

The “creme de la creme” of personalization is showing retargeted ads to people based on what they were doing on your page earlier, based on their previous behaviour.

You can achieve a much better user experience by that, as you don’t show unnecessary retargeting ads to whom you don’t need to do so: those who purchased a product from you will not see the same thing in the next few days, those who regularly return to purchase will not come across price discounts, and so on.

The point is to leave out of or include the users in the different groups based on their actions. For this you will need to create more visual elements and more texts, but you can be sure that it’s worth addressing the customers with truly personal examples.

 

tips Example: Let’s take a look at the offline campaign of an American store!

They keep record of and follow their customers even for decades: if somebody buys from them a mattress that comes with a 10 year warranty, they send him a letter addressed to him personally, after that time has passed.

They inquire how the given mattress that you purchased from them 10 years ago has worked out, and they offer you the possibility of buying the most recent piece of the series with a small discount.

That’s a perfect retargeting marketing campaign that is very much appreciated by the clients, because it addresses them again and again in the most personalized way possible.

 

By the way, up-sell…

 

Use up-sell, but smartly

 

With the help of retargeting advertising campaigns you can make your current customers purchase even more from you, but you shouldn’t do it in a way like most of the ecommerce stores are trying to.

In most of the cases the advertisements pop-up immediately after you buy something – but what for?

Since you’ve just paid for a service, you’ve just been convinced it’s worthwhile for you to spend money on it.

If they start convincing you right away that you’d rather need something more expensive, you won’t convert.

On the other hand, it’s likely that you’ll become unsure even about the quality of the already purchased product or service.

Wait until your product has been used for a while, and then try to offer something different, something better, something more.

You should try to help, not to sell!

 

  • Is it for sure that they are not pushing the limits of the present service?
  • Don’t they need more of the given product just to be on the safe side?
  • Don’t they need a bigger one after a year by any chance?

 

Be patient and retarget your active customers when they most likely need the change, and they also trust you enough already (as they have been using your quality product for a while) to believe you.

Of course, for this you will need to monitor who bought what exactly on your page, and make an offer to them relevant to that.

That’s the basic principle of up-sell, so make sure to use a retargeting service which you can achieve that with.

 

Delayed retargeting

 

If you mark those who visit your page, the “shelf life” of your audience will expire after a while – that’s not a problem though.

That’s because if you show them different retargeting ads from time to time, you can efficiently build a complete campaign like that even without having a need for any other reinforcement, for landing pages or for similar solutions.

Your messages can build the need, the offer, slowly convincing the potential customers.

Built on one another (and not displayed several dozens of times a day) they will reinforce each other, just like a well-created newsletter campaign.

You can gradually present them your offer with the help of the different messages, you can create authenticity, you can create desire, you can apply the limited offers (scarcity) towards the end of the marketing campaign, and so on.

If you make sure that the messages are consistent, that they refer to each other, that they are actually built on each other, you can indeed achieve quite high conversion rates among those who might have never found their way back to your page otherwise.

 

Offer something else (even less)

 

If somebody visits your landing page or product page but they don’t purchase, it may be that they are simply not ready to accept your offer just yet.

 

If that’s the case, you’ll just have to offer something else in order to catch them.Maybe they are not ready yet to talk to you over the phone, but a newsletter with valuable pieces of content can be tempting.

Perhaps they don’t want to purchase any of your products yet, but you can persuade them to read the pieces of content in your blog which are related to the products they viewed earlier.

 

This is practically down-sell, even if you don’t sell anything: if they don’t want to accept your offer immediately, you can still reach out to them, and offer something that they can accept much more easily.

By doing that, you can maintain the relationship in the long run as well, and you’ll have a better chance of convincing them.

You can also target the audience of your competitorsAdWords and other major platforms don’t only monitor the visitors of your own page, you can create a segment of the leads of your competitors’ pages and you can target them with a good (better) offer.

 

Use retargeting on YouTube

 

Hopefully, you’ve already read our article on how amazingly you can use video marketing in ecommerce.

If yes, then you may know that how-to videos, educational pieces of content and such things are incredibly popular and also perform well in the searches.

And if somebody watches one of your videos, you shouldn’t let them go.

If they found useful information in them (and why wouldn’t they, as you made the video to achieve that), you can target them with advertisements that direct their attention towards other similar pieces of content.

If they watched a product test, you can advertise even that product to them, just make sure to refer to the previous content.

 

Is it really worthwhile for you to target everybody?

 

When you do segmentation, you should also take into consideration that it’s not worth spending money on everybody.

Monitor the behaviour of your visitors, and also the path they follow.

You can work with those who visit several sub-pages, those who view multiple products within a category, or who regularly consume your pieces of content.

On the other hand, those who visited your main page once and then bounced off, are probably not valuable leads for you.

It’s likely that they found you organically or they just clicked on an advertisement (provided that you had advertised your main page, which you should never do, if possible), they saw your main offers and decided almost straight away that they didn’t want to purchase anything from you.

 

It’s not worth spending money on them: your retargeting ads will more likely irritate them than convince them of anything.

 

Target those who have only seen less recent products

 

It may well be that multiple pieces of a product line can be found at the same time in your online shop.

It is also possible that somebody found a less recent product organically – coming from a less recent piece of content, or even organically, from the search engine.

If they don’t convert, it may be a logical assumption that it’s because they have not seen the best offer.

You can target them with advertisements drawing their attention to the fact that the nicer/better/higher performance model is also available.

 

tips Fine-tune the targeting: display such retargeting ads to only those who viewed the page of the less recent product but have not viewed that of the new one – if they saw the new one as well, you should look for the reason for the failed conversion elsewhere.

 

Monitor your FAQ page

 

Those who browsed the frequently asked questions (and ideally did not just bounce off this page), probably have a question they did not find an answer to on your page. (Provided of course that they didn’t convert later.)

In this case you can recommend them your customer service, your educational pieces of content, possibility for consultation, or anything else that could provide answers to their questions.

It’s even better if you set filters that monitor what kind of products they might have viewed earlier.

For instance, if somebody browsed through the products of a given category and the frequently asked questions as well, there’s a good chance of them having some kind of questions in connection with the given product category.

Therefore, you can set the main categories to personalized advertisements: “you have questions about product X?”

This will more likely attract their attention and thus be able to push those towards conversion, who had no other problem than a couple of unanswered questions.

 

Show faces, familiar names

 

Hopefully you are building your personal brand as well.

You are building an “expert brand” for your ecommerce store with professional pieces of content so that you are renowned by the largest possible audience as an authentic expert.

If that’s the case, and if you have several people in your team, segment your advertisements also based on whose content the visitors read.

You don’t necessarily have to immediately sell a product: the goal is to tie them to yourself, to build an audience, to have the highest possible visibility.

Consequently, luring the readers who have already read a couple of articles, have seen a couple of videos back to you, may represent a great opportunity for lead generation.

In order to achieve this, you should use the faces familiar to them in your retargeting ads: show them who they saw in the video, or whose photo they saw next to the articles, display the name as well, in order to make the message even more personal.

Thus you will efficiently capture the attention: it’s quite certain that everyone will notice a familiar face and will also read your message.

And you have already achieved your first goal with that.

 

Be present on multiple platforms

 

But only if you can do that smartly!

You can target the same target audience with retargeting marketing on a dozen platforms simultaneously, you can send emails, you can be present on Facebook timeline, on Twitter, and so on.

But if they see too much of you, they’ll be blind for you.

As a consequence: set the frequency in a way so that they don’t see you too many times.

You can also avoid advertisement blindness (and can more efficiently attract attention) if you create platform specific advertisements smartly.

Examine what kind of pieces of content your visitors arriving from each platform, and those who follow you on them, like the most.

Whether they are gifs, images, quotations, professional articles or how-to videos – it doesn’t matter.

What’s essential is that you offer at each place something with which there’s the greatest chance of achieving the target conversion.

 

tips Tip:  Even if you van to sell the same product to the same target audience, make sure not to do that with the same text and same image – simply stick to the message match, but always vary the advertisements in accordance with the requirements of the platform.

 

It may be tempting to simply paste in the same solution, but by doing that, you’re definitely working against yourself.

 

Pay attention to topicalities

 

You shouldn’t monitor only what they purchased from you, but also when they did that.

Some products and services are always more popular at special occasions – which may be Christmas, or the time of the end-of-the-year high workload at the companies, you need to know your target audience to be able to determine these occasions.

The main thing is to be able to formulate a personalized message.

 

  • To be able to ask the customers whether at this Christmas they need what they purchased from you last year.
  • Or something similar, better or bigger.
  • Or whether their company will need help this October with this or that issue.

 

There’s a great chance of having yes as an answer, ideally they already started looking, or at least they have it in their minds that they need your product or service.

By doing this, you can efficiently make them think of you first when they actually want to make a purchase.

 

Retargeting marketing case studies: examples you can learn from

 

Kelley Blue Book: a good idea, realized imperfectly

 

Let’s see an example (1st case study in the article) that is quite far from being perfect.

The blogger of Wishpond had been looking for a car for a couple of months, then he came across the advertisement of Kelley Blue Book, a car salesman on Twitter.

He had visited their page before and he was addressed with a quite good message as well.

What was good in the advertisement: they applied an image that’s capable of attracting attention (there was no CTA on it, though).

The text was OK as well: it praised very shortly the performance of the advertised Honda car, and it didn’t want to shove purchasing down your throat right away.

It invited you to read the expert opinions on the car – it’s smart that they tried to persuade you to visit their site by using the power of social proof.

That’s fine so far. (The blogger also highlights that they could have customized the link shortened by bitly, which is actually a good idea.)

However, it becomes clear after  the click that the campaign has not been thought out carefully.

That’s because the visitor doesn’t arrive at the promised opinions, not even at the page of the car seen in the advertisement.

Those who had been reached by retargeting, were simply taken to the main page of the merchant.

 

tips This is a blunder: If somebody has already visited your page and you can retarget them, you should never take them to your main page.

They’ve already been on your page, they know what you have to offer.

If you can reach them with a retargeting ad so that they find their ways back to you, you probably gave them a well targeted offer, and taking them somewhere else after that would mean deceiving and misleading them.

Message match is damaged, and thus the trust towards you, because you make them frustrated.

 

You give them work, as they have to find the offer. And believe me, not too many people will do that after all this.

 

An excellent example of how this can be done well: a retargeting marketing campaign of FIAT from a couple of years ago, which Google also praises in its professional materials presenting micro-moments.

 

The users targeted with FIAT’s responsive advertisements ended up on very precisely specified sub-pages:

  • Those who clicked on the advertisement on desktop were directed to an interactive page where they could “put together” themselves the car suitable for them (By the way, applying such interactive solutions is incredibly efficient regarding the increase of commitment: if the potential customers already invested energy in the modification, in the building of the product, they will feel it to be their own much more.)
  • And those who clicked on the very same advertisement on the mobile phone, immediately arrived at a page where the nearest car salesmen were shown to them, where they could personally take a look at the car right away.

 

This campaign was not only targeted well, they also paid attention to what happens after the click, to what ideas should be planted in the user’s head by making them follow a given path.

It’s not by chance that it was a huge success.

 

Retargeting can also be too much of a good thing: Handy

 

We are taking a look at another example from here (3rd case study), because it demonstrates perfectly one of the most common mistakes.

The blogger was looking for cleaning services and one of those whose page he had visited earlier, targeted him with a simple banner advertisement.

 

The blogger likes the advertisement – I don’t too much, I tell you what’s wrong with it.It’s main message is that “it’s only 29 dollars”, however, I would rather focus on the service.

 

I would formulate creatively in a few words how clean your home will be.

I would even adjust it to an event: if somebody is looking for a cleaner, you can press that point of pain.

You can write it on the banner that they have never hosted their family in such a clean apartment for the celebratory dinner.

I would even put a short testimonial on it as well, or would just put the headline between inverted commas. Simply because inverted commas raise attention, people usually pay more attention to quoted texts, there’s a greater chance that they are read.

They could have made the CTA more creative as well, the “book now” text is completely average. You could write something like this instead: “I’d like a clean home”. However, these are not real mistakes, they’re rather elements that can be improved.

 

The mistake: the blogger came across the ad at least 50 times within two days.

 

Nowadays the biggest problem with advertisements is exactly that they fall victim to banner blindness.

You can counterbalance that with creative images and text, but if people see the same advertisement several dozens of times every day, they’ll be blind to those as well.

Recall the most creative TV commercial you saw last year.

Imagine that it’s played in each and every commercial break: after how many times do you get bored of it or have no effect on you anymore?

You should pay very close attention to how frequently the advertisement is shown: the targeted audience should never see the same thing everywhere, because by letting that happen you’re simply working against yourself.

 

Understand your visitors: Inbound Ascension

 

 

The biggest trick in retargeting is nothing new: you have to understand your visitors.

You need to know their intentions, their problems, their needs.

Of course the problem is that they don’t tell you those, only indirectly. You can draw conclusions, and mainly based on how they  act on your page.

Professionals at Inbound Ascension did exactly that, moreover, they were not working with an ecommerce webpage but with a service-based page, which represents a greater difficulty in this respect.

Their solution was very simple: they divided those in the sales funnel into several segments, and they advertised different bait products, pieces of content and services to them based on that.

They basically combined segmentation by intention with professional retargeting.

They noticed, that those for example who have already read our articles of educational type, but have not yet bought anything, have not yet found the appropriate solution for their problems.

On the other hand, it’s quite clear that they are having some kind of a problem in connection with online marketing.

Therefore, they addressed them with “Still need some help with marketing?” type advertisements using text and images that would definitely remind them where and when they had met the brand (during content consumption) earlier.

By using this simple technique they achieved a return (ROI) of 7,425% during their campaign.

You can even more easily accomplish that if you follow the earlier described segmentation methods, and are willing to invest the necessary time and energy into creating retargetig ads with different messages for the different customer groups, in order to have the greatest chance of reaching them.

 

Even if you don’t follow anything else, you should follow at least this one...

When you want to launch a retargeting marketing campaign, you should always start with examining your audience.

If you’ve never done segmentation before, you should dig into the topic, use analytical software applications, tools that will help you divide your visitors into groups that can be interpreted from marketing point of view.

You shouldn’t do this because this is the best practice or because I say so.

You have to do this because if you start retargeting advertising without any kind of filters, criteria or settings, you’ll just simply throw your money down the drain.

There’s no way of sugarcoating this.

You’ll have to invest energy and time into making well-identifiable groups at the beginning, and then into inventing the message for each group that would most probably capture them, that would best serve their needs, and represent the best answer to their problems.

And you don’t have too much space for that: should you advertise on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube or in Google’s network, you’ll only have a couple of phrases and an image at maximum to work with.

You can make the maximum of this, if you take the pieces of advice detailed in this article – and you can also learn the tricks of the professionals from the case studies.

Avoid common mistakes, don’t torture but serve your audience, and I guarantee that much more people will purchase from you and also have positive experience while doing that.

That is because you pay attention to their needs and offer personalized solutions, all that without being pushy.