Facebook is the biggest social network — and not just by a little. With 2.41 billion monthly active users, it’s the third most visited website in the universe, only outranked by Google and YouTube. A whopping 71% of users log in every single day, with more than half logging in several times a day. Plus, it’s always growing and evolving.
For this reason, it’s not surprising that 87.1% of marketers will use Facebook marketing in 2020. It’s a big win, particularly if you bolster your chances of reaching interested consumers with retargeting.
Facebook retargeting has grown in popularity because it’s even more effective than your standard Facebook advertising.
Sure, at some point you’re going to need to pitch new customers in order to grow your business, but it’s cheaper and more rewarding to market to existing customers or people who are already familiar with your brand and like-minded brands, too.
What Is Retargeting?
Facebook retargeting is particularly effective because the platform uses very specific targeting and tracking data.
Companies tend to use this a few ways: you can cross-sell new items to people who made past purchases, show targeted ads to people who bounced, reach out to people who share similarities with existing customers (i.e. a lookalike audience), or simply raise additional brand awareness among users who have already shown a little interest.
The concept of retargeting works like this: users visit your webpage or social media page, a cookie or “retargeting pixel” is added to their browser, and that allows you to follow them around the internet, serving up content based on the cookie.
For example, a friend purchased macarons from Ma-Ka-Rohn a month before receiving this retargeting ad. Was it effective? Yes. Their strategy was all about timing — they served her this ad after she’d surely eaten the first batch that was ordered.
In short: Facebook retargeting works because you’re dangling the carrot in front of customers who initially left your sales funnel. Some research has shown that visitors who see retargeting ads are 70% more likely to convert than those who don’t. Still, the key to retargeting success is a pointed, planned strategy. These five Facebook retargeting strategies can get you started.
Strategy 1: Flip Shopping Cart Abandonment On Its Head
By the year 2040, Nasdaq estimates that 95% of all purchases will be made through eCommerce, but eCommerce has one big problem — shopping cart abandonment.
The sad truth is that most customers — about 70%, according to the Baymard Institute — abandon their cart before making a purchase. This rate has only grown from 60% in the late 2000s to more than 80% in some cases. So, why do customers do it?
Well, it’s a mix of things. Sometimes the purchase process is too complicated, especially if a website isn’t optimized for mobile browsing.
Other times, a customer was on the fence about a product or decided to not bother and find their credit card. In all of these cases, a Facebook retargeting strategy that targets cart abandoners can entice buyers by showcasing the product they were thinking about purchasing.
The average cart abandonment campaign looks like this: a customer leaves something in their cart and bounces from their page, then an ad is created to recommend that product and similar products.
Sometimes this comes with a special offer to entice the buyer or additional information that serves as a value-add.
For example, this Garmin cart abandonment campaign was shown to me on Instagram (which is owned by Facebook and uses the same ad platform) after I left this particular bicycle GPS in my shopping cart.
This ad forced me to see the GPS in a different light by promoting built-in automatic incident detection, a feature I wasn’t previously aware of that served as a huge value-add.
You can create a similar ad through Facebook’s ad manager by adding a tracking pixel and setting it to track:
- Visits to your add-to-cart page
- Add-to-cart button clicks
- Visits to your purchase/thank you pages.
This last bit is because you need to exclude the latter group. You don’t want to send a cart abandonment ad to people who’ve completed a purchase.
Strategy 2: Dynamic Product Recommendations
Facebook’s retargeting system doesn’t just allow you to target users who’ve abandoned their shopping carts or previously made a purchase.
You can also target users who visited specific product pages but never ended up putting anything in their cart. This is a great strategy because the potential customer already had a proven interest.
Here’s how it works: Your retargeting pixel will track their movement across your product pages — or similar product pages on third party sites — and aggregate that user’s web history into a string of products. The best part is that this strategy edges out the competition.
You can market to a so-called “lookalike audience” by presenting products from your inventory that are similar to products they’ve clicked on in someone else’s inventory.
For example, I clicked on a sponsored ad from Firmoo, an ecommerce eyeglass retailer. I browsed around their website for a bit, mostly looking at product pages for pink-framed glasses.
After that, I started receiving Facebook ads for pink-framed glasses from their competitor EyeBuyDirect. Anytime you can beat out a competitor is a major win.
You can create a lookalike audience campaign in Facebook’s ad manager by clicking “Create Audience” and selecting a “Lookalike Audience.”
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