E-commerce as we know it hasn’t been around for that long. Back in the 90’s you could buy generic products, like flowers, online — but more personal products were only available in brick-and-mortar stores.
With advances in tech and a move towards greater consumer convenience, anyone can buy almost anything online.
In a more competitive space, online retailers are getting better at targeting specific people and personalizing marketing campaigns, like ads. But they’re not the only ones personalizing their efforts.
The SaaS industry has grown wildly in the last 10 years and is also looking for the best way to target and sell to customers online.
By focusing on what’s worked for e-commerce companies, creating remarketing strategies, and using tools like Facebook Pixel to put these best practices into action, they too can reap the benefits of retargeting.
When it comes to retargeting — that is, targeted advertising for a small group of potential customers based on past behaviors — it’s easy to think that e-commerce companies can benefit the most.
After all, it’s easy for these companies to track who made a purchase and who didn’t.
The truth is, any company regardless of its type can benefit from ad retargeting because you’re reaching out to customers who’ve already shown interest in your product.
When it comes to finding new potential customers and using audience insights to improve retargeting efforts, even SaaS companies can benefit.
Don’t reinvent the wheel, learn from e-commerce instead
E-commerce has been using the principles of retargeting for years. They’ve also become more sophisticated with their approach. In the past, potential customers might have received general coupons via email as an incentive to come back and buy something. Now, website tracking and social media are leading retargeting strategies because they’re more focused.
With a few minor tweaks, SaaS companies can use the best retargeting practices of e-commerce companies like website tracking, marketing strategy A/B tests and follow-up standards to help with their approach to retargeting.
Follow these 7 steps:
Distinguish between on & off-site interaction
Retargeting requires a focused approach towards a small group of potential customers. Therefore, only focus on potential customers who’ve had some kind of interaction on your site — this is on-site interaction. These are people who’ve already expressed some kind of interest in your service because they’ve signed up for an email list or downloaded content. You have a higher chance of converting these folks.
Don’t overwhelm potential customers
Once someone has expressed interest in your service, avoid the temptation to bombard them with ads. Retargeting works in cycles — potential customers show interest and you market to them again until they buy — so choose how many times you go after them. Any more than three cycles might be too much.
Don’t overwhelm converted customers
Once you’ve converted a potential customer to an actual customer, ease up on the advertising. They get it. They know what value you provide so work on building a lasting relationship with them instead.
Know who you’re talking to
Implementing tracking on your site plays a huge role in effective retargeting. Not tracking makes it hard to know who you should be talking to. Once you have a list of potential customers, break it down further by segmenting them into groups and sending specific ads to each group.
Test different campaign formats
There’s a lot of competition out there. People see hundreds of ads every day, so you have to stand out from all the noise in order for potential customers to take note. Test different approaches and rotate them. Change graphics, wording or the platform — social media or email campaigns — you use to hold interest. People are more likely to tune out your ad if they’re constantly seeing the same thing.
Be clear on what actions you expect people to take
You decide how you’ll know who to flag for retargeting. If you want site visitors to sign up for a free trial because people with trials convert at a higher percentage than people who don’t, call this action out. Set up obvious CTAs on different pages that take visitors to your subscription page.
Offer unique delivery options
When you segment your retargeting group, set up A/B tests for each one. Even though you have different campaigns for each group, consider setting up different ways to disperse that information. Some may prefer emails versus frequent push notifications.
Retargeting needs remarketing
Businesses spring up when someone spots an opportunity and comes up with a new way to solve a problem. Whether it’s a new product or service, you want customers to choose this new solution over the competitors’. Show them what you offer and put in place an advertising strategy that showcases this.
Based on how you advertise your solution, interested people will either buy it or stop short of making a purchase. It’s these potential customers who don’t follow through that fall into the retargeting bucket. Once they’ve shown interest, recognize this as an opportunity for future conversion and act on retargeting them.
In retail, this means targeting people who added items to their cart but didn’t check out. In SaaS, it means targeting people who did something like downloaded information from your site but didn’t subscribe to your service.
But here’s the thing — retargeting means you also have to “remarket.” That is, once you’ve identified who you want to target, follow up with a new marketing strategy and campaign. Because you’re targeting this group for the second time, make your new ads focused and direct. You want this group to reconsider making a purchase.
To start creating a plan for your retargeting, track the actions of people who visit your site to find out what they’re doing and who stopped short of following through. Next, follow up with strategically placed ads in the places potential customers spend the most time, like their social media feeds, to remind them of the value you offer.
Let’s say you offer a subscription service for a productivity app. New leads find you and sign up for a free trial subscription. For your part, store this information and send ads through email campaigns and push notifications to get them to complete the cycle and pay for a subscription.
Here’s what you need to remember:
- Build a strategy that revolves around filling in the gaps and capturing customers who didn’t respond during initial marketing campaigns.
- Retargeting and remarketing work together. Before you can market to potential customers again, you have to first set up requirements to determine who they are.
- It’s a cycle, so retarget and remarket more than once to encourage potential customers to come back and buy.
Use Facebook Pixel and Pixel Caffeine for enhanced audience insights
It’s not enough to simply track visitors on your site, you need to use these insights to learn more about these visitors and offer up remarketing campaigns that hit the mark and convert them. Choose a tool that allows you to get the most out of the information you collect.
A tool like Facebook Pixel does all the hard work for you once you’ve set up your specs. It tracks activity on your website and measures your campaign ROI. You can adjust your approach to boost effectiveness. For instance, it lets you track site visitors across all platforms. If you know that mobile users are more likely to convert through remarketing, then this is an avenue to put more emphasis on.
It goes further by letting business users create custom audiences. If potential customers are logged into Facebook when they visit your site, Facebook pixel tracks their actions. With this information, you can show targeted ads to specific audiences. Pixel lets you define what each of your audiences looks like so that you know who you’re talking to.
Next, the custom conversion feature lets you set up funnels for potential customers to flow through. You decide what the funnel looks like, but it could be your subscription page since this is ultimately where you want site visitors to end up. When they visit this page, you can track how your ad performed. For visitors who clicked on the ad, did they end up where you wanted them to? If so, you have a good chance of converting them.
The point is to choose a tool that helps you track and retarget, and we’ve seen so many marketers struggle with this task. That’s why we created Pixel Caffeine – a WordPress plugin that makes the installation easy peasy lemon squeezy. With Pixel Caffeine, you can get the Facebook pixel site-wide without typing a line of code. And did we mention that it is FREE? That’s impressive, don’t you think?
Getting started with Pixel Caffeine takes only a few minutes. Log it to your WordPress account and select “Plugins” from the admin panel. Click on “Add New.” Search for “Pixel Caffeine” and click “Install.” After that, activate the plugin, connect your Facebook account, enable tracking options and you’re ready to go.
The most important reason to install Pixel Caffeine is the super fast Custom Audiences creating process. You can also use the Pixel to track custom conversions based on clicks, pages visits or interaction with CSS Selectors to monitor your Facebook ad campaigns’ performance. You can even create custom audiences for anyone who visits an exact URL, or a piece of a URL. Simply go to your Pixel Caffeine plugin, and set up new Facebook Custom Audiences based on website visitors’ actions on your site.
There’s more! You can delay the pixel firing if you want to avoid tracking bouncing users that come to your site and you can also pass to Facebook advanced events and data like tags, categories and custom fields of the post being visited. All the Custom Audiences, custom conversions, and tags you create with Pixel Caffeine plugin will be automatically synced with your Facebook advertising account.
Want some other ideas? If you’re in the software business, you’ll often have to nurture trial and freemium users to become paying customers. Create a Custom Audience of all your free trial users and exclude the ones who have already converted to paying customers. It’s all possible with Facebook conversion tracking and Pixel Caffeine. To know more, here’s a complete guide.
Retargeting no matter your business
Any business can take advantage of retargeting. Start by figuring out who you should target and setting up a plan that boosts their interest.
Once you know who to retarget, it’s important to customize your campaigns. There’s something that piqued the initial interest of your potential customers. It’s your job to remind them of the value they saw so that they’re more willing to convert and become a customer.
It’s a worthwhile exercise, but will take some trial and error until you figure out exactly what works for your service. The good thing is you’re not locked into any strategy. You have the flexibility you need to make adjustments that get potential customers to come back and buy.