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Step by Step Guide to Google Remarketing – Adwords Remarketing

What is Remarketing?

Google Adwords remarketing (sometimes called retargeting) is an advertising solution that is available to current Google Adwords account holders. It gives advertisers the ability to display ads to individuals that have previously visited their website. Remarketing ads (text & image ads) will essentially follow each visitor, using cookies, as they browse other websites that are a part of Google’s display network. A remarketing campaign with Google Adwords is another way for online businesses to position themselves in front of their target audience. It will help keep your brand or business fresh in the minds of potential buyers and clients. These strategies, according to Google, can “radically improve ROI”, compared to a typical Adwords campaign.

How to Setup Remarketing in Google Adwords

Step One – The first step in the remarketing setup process is creating an audience. Your audience will consist of a list of your website visitors. To create a list go to the audiences tab. This tab is located below the campaign menu under “Shared Library”. Once you are there, click on the “New Audience” button and choose “Remarketing List”. This action will create a “Main List” with the associated “Remarketing Tag”. Click on the hyperlinked “Tag” and add the segment of code right before the endingtag. We like to close this tag immediately (see image below) and use the rule based remarketing list type instead. As long as you have the “Main List” code placed on your site you can create as many lists as you like without having to add additional code. Rule-based lists can be configured using any page to create a truly detailed audience list. For example, you could create a list for each product page, your shopping cart, or a combination of both.

Google Remarketing Picture #1

To setup your initial campaign, begin with your home page only (for simplicity). You can setup more complex lists later. Add your home page by going to URL > Contains > > Set Your Duration > Click Save. Your list should begin building as long as you have an enabled campaign, the code on your site, and a rule based audience setup. Our list shows 140 (see image above). Hopefully, this will increase each day. According to Google the size of your list is only limited to the duration of the cookie. The longer the cookie length, in most cases, the higher number in your list.

Step Two – Now that we have a list we’ll need to associate that list with a campaign and an ad group. So let’s setup a new campaign. Remember, remarketing can only be setup using Google’s display network.

Google Adwords Remarketing Picture #2

Step Three – Now let’s setup the ad groups. We like to setup two separate ad groups, one for images and one for text. Since you are only targeting the display network you won’t have to add any keywords. You’ll have three options for creating your ad group: Interest Categories, Remarketing Lists, and Custom Combinations. Do not select “Interest Categories” or your ads will start to appear outside of your remarketing list. Go to the “Remarketing List” tab and you should find the list you created in step one.

Google Adwords Remarketing Picture #3

Step Four – This step involves setting up your ads. If you set it up like we did, you would have created a separate ad group for both images and text. The text ads can be built the same way as you would in a typical Adwords account. The image ads can be setup in the dimensions indicated below.

  • 320 × 50 Mobile leaderboard
  • 468 × 60 Banner
  • 728 × 90 Leaderboard
  • 250 × 250 Square
  • 200 × 200 Small square
  • 336 × 280 Large rectangle
  • 300 × 250 Inline rectangle
  • 120 × 600 Skyscraper
  • 160 × 600 Wide skyscraper

Google Remarketing Picture #4

Step Five – At this point you should have your campaigns, ad groups, and ads setup. Now all you have to do is wait for your list to populate. It usually takes about a day for your list to build and display. As soon as you have built a list of 100, your ads (text & image) will begin to show on Google’s display network (anyone that runs Adsense ads).

Step Six – Revisit your campaign after 1-2 weeks. You’ll want to check to see where your ads are appearing (hopefully you’ve already linked your account to Google Analytics, so you’ll be able to see). Remarketing campaigns will allow you to exclude poorly performing sites in their network. So if you are not converting or if the bounce rate is too high, it might be a good time to cut the cord.