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Search Retargeting: An Under-Used Strategy You Should Add to Your Mix

By Aurora Rodriguez on Jul 23, 2021


Online marketers have a lot of options to choose from to get the word out with the hope of increasing sales. They can use display advertising, search advertising, email campaigns, paid social ads and a lot more. One powerful method is retargeting, showing a person an item or category in which they have already expressed interest.

Many business people are familiar with site retargeting, but fewer use search retargeting which is an extremely effective form of search engine marketing. Search retargeting is sort of a cross between display and search advertising. It’s a powerful way to reach customers interested in what you are selling, who you probably would not reach otherwise. It’s under-used by most businesses, and that can work to your advantage.

In this article, we are going to explore just what search retargeting is, how it differs from site retargeting, how it fits into search engine marketing overall and why it’s a solid investment.

The Difference Between Search Retargeting and Site Retargeting

Most people are much more familiar with site retargeting than search retargeting. There are similarities, but they are not the same. Let’s look at the difference.

Site Retargeting

Site retargeting is using a platform such as Google Ads to show relevant ads to people who have already visited your site. Say for example, someone visits your women’s wear site and clicks on a listing for high-heeled violet shoes. When they leave the site and surf the web or visit social media, site retargeting enables you to follow them and show them ads for your store – and even for that same pair of violet shoes, similar shoes and even accessories that might go well with the violet shoes such as a matching handbag.

The benefit of site retargeting is that you can show display ads featuring a product or related products repeatedly to someone who has already shown interest but has not yet made a purchase.

Search Retargeting

Search retargeting, on the other hand, is focused on serving your digital ads to people who have searched for your keywords on Google or other search engines. They will see your ads when they browse outside your search results during the time periods you designate. So instead of just advertising on the search engine results page (SERP), you can reach people to almost anywhere they go online.

Unless you are pulling one of the first few placements for a keyword on Google search, it’s pretty likely that most people searching never see your link. But with search retargeting, you can still reach these people who are searching on your keywords, even though they never saw your link on Google and never visited your website.

This vastly increases the number of people you can reach who are known to be interested in your products. And you can reach them with relevant ads. It works through a bit of code and keyword lists that may be broad or exact.

Search retargeting shows your brand to prospects in a place they would be never have seen it otherwise. Search retargeting can be an extremely effective part of a Google ads management services strategy.

Search Retargeting vs SEO

You probably already use SEO. But as we already said, unless you are ranking in the first few search results, most people won’t see your link when they do a search. It’s a hard game and a long-term play to work yourself up to the top. Of course, that’s no doubt part of your strategy. In the meantime, search retargeting can put your brand in front of interested prospects. Even after you are at the top of Google search results, search engine retargeting can continue to display your brand to those who don’t click to your site and buy immediately.

Search Retargeting vs. Standard PPC

Probably standard Pay Per Click display ads are part of your marketing mix. You can buy PPC display ads that appear on the search results page when people search on your keywords. But search retargeting helps to direct people to your display ads even after they leave search results. Standard PPC alone can’t do that.

Search retargeting however shows users your company on Google’s breadth of advertising networks (which is basically most of the web) after they have left the search results page.. Most people don’t purchase products and services on their first search, and having your product and service displayed repeatedly as they traverse the web makes much more likely that they will buy from you.

Investing in Search Retargeting

So, you are committed to search engine marketing and like the concept of search retargeting. So now what? The first step is to have a conversation with a professional to understand exactly how search retargeting will work for your company.

Check out our page on search engine advertising, then call us at contact us at 1 (872) 242-1231 or fill out this form for a free consultation about how search retargeting can specifically help your business.

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