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While keywords and phrases can be effective in driving potential customers to your website, you want them to return to your site.

You need to build a return customer base. By encouraging customers to come back to your site you increase the potential to convert awareness and leads to sales. One way to target your marketing to increase customer retention is ‘retargeting’.

Retargeting is a display advertising technique used to generate return visits to your website. Building a strong campaign using retargeting takes some time and thought, but is well worth the investment. Tips for building retargeting campaigns include:

  • Build your campaign lists based on characteristics that will convert your leads into sales. Look at the interests they indicated when they signed up to your database and send relevant information.
  • Customise your banner advertisements to their location and the stage of the purchase cycle - link it to information relevant to the web page the customer visited. A way to do this is to have a range of advertising creative with different messages based on the search they conducted.
  • Understand the sales funnel and create interesting and relevant messages to move the target audience to the next stage of the funnel (awareness, interest, evaluation, commitment and referral). Provide information depending on the action the visitor last took when they arrived at the website. For example, if someone visited the signup page but didn’t sign up, provide them with an offer that might entice them to join.
  • Remind the customer why they visited your site by showing content they previously viewed. This is done through your advertising and having visited earlier to your site. Serve a display advertisement at other sites they may be visiting.
  • Email statistics help identify those who have opened your email but are yet to take an action - these prospective customers have started their journey down the funnel and are more likely to respond to a retarget.
  • Offers, discounts and coupons are always a great way to track the success of your campaigns and drive revenue. A good offer will be aligned between the interest (what did the customer last look at or do), the content you are offering, and the discount. Rotate/change your advertising frequently otherwise wearout on the message may occur resulting in lower campaign effectiveness.
  • Develop a multiple channel (integrated) strategy that will drive traffic and conversion - don’t just use one medium; use different marketing channels at the same time (in a complementary way) to increase the immediate visibility of your campaign. And don’t forget to adjust your strategy - test and adjust based on marketing results to find the optimum channel strategy.

The exciting aspect of a retargeting campaign is that it can be as simple or as complex as you want to make it. The key is to make it precise and targeted to your audience who have already visited your site.


Keemi launched her latest range of new products, but has now realised that she is missing out on potential sales from her past customers buying them.

She knows from customer feedback that her products and service are fantastic, but she can’t understand why her existing customers are not trying her new products.

Keemi has decided to retarget her past customers. What retargeting method would you suggest Keemi use and why?

Post your recommendations to the Comments area.

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This article is from the free online course:

Online Business: Digital Marketing for Success

RMIT University