Welcome to Josh Baker's Practical Advice for Optimizing Your Internet Marketing blog. Here you will find internet marketing optimization and online strategy articles full of tips, tricks, discussions, and thoughts to help you take your marketing and business to the next level of success.

Behavioral Retargeting (Behavioral Remarketing) Basics


Behavioral retargeting, for those that haven’t worked with it yet as discussed in this article is a form of online advertising where your ads are redelivered to visitors whom recently visited your website and didn’t  complete a pre-determined desired action during their visit. In other words in an overly simplistic explanation (more clarity is described in the next paragraph), the user visits your website, doesn’t complete your desired action and then leaves and is continued to be shown your advertising on websites that they visit after yours in order to get them to return back to your website and then gives you another chance to close the “deal”. The theory behind it is that the visitor has shown some engagement with your site or brand by initially visited your website and therefore is a prime person to retarget more of your advertising to and to continue the marketing conversation with them. This allows you to draw them back in an attempt to make the conversion again by providing multiple contacts with that same prospect within a short period of time.

For example, a visitor comes to your website and views a page or multiples pages and then leaves. That same visitor goes to other websites after your website and your advertising is shown to them on those websites. Now to be completely clear, your retargeting ads won’t show on every website that visitor goes to after yours; it has to be a web site that is part of same advertising network as the retargeting platform you are working with. Usually, the ad network will have you place some pixels or tracking codes on your website so when a visitor comes to your website information will be stored in a cookie in their browser so that when they leave and go to another website in their network it knows to show them your advertising.

behavioral retargeting behavioral remarketing


According to an article on InternetRetailer.com in May 2009 24% of online marketers were using some form of behavioral retargeting. And when viewing from the consumer side it makes perfect sense – you visit a site that offers something you have some level of interest on, but not yet ready to pull the trigger and purchase or subscribe. You leave and suddenly start seeing over and over again advertisements that feature that company, product, or website almost everywhere you go. Suddenly you can’t get it out of your head, you have to go back and look again, and you start justifying the purchase that it makes sense. It seems so right in your mind. Not everyone will feel this way, but a small percentage will, and had you not retargeted them, you would have lost them to elsewhere.

Once a visitor is at your site and does not covert, behavioral retargeting provides those additional interactions with your product or brand, building that level of trust and interest, making it more likely they will convert upon drawing them back.


You need a decent amount of traffic in order for retargeting to be cost effective so that more visitors pick up your behavioral retargeting cookie. This enables more opportunities for visitors to see your ads on the ad network. Of course, you want this traffic to be relevant or they won’t convert no matter what.   A good initial offering is to offer a free report or downloadable product (relevant to your site and target audience) to entice visitors to your website, then they will pick up the cookie and see your ads as they continue onwards as they are retargeted.


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