This article will read about eCommerce and retargeting methods, including Facebook Ads and email. In a world as digitized as today, retargeting campaigns are becoming a crucial part of any online business's success, so we felt the need to combine the two topics. By the end, we hope this article will help you understand the basics of retargeting and its importance.
Introduction to Ecommerce
Ecommerce entails buying and selling goods, services, and data via electronic means (typically the internet). Commonly, it is thought of in terms of three subcategories aligned with a different set of online hosting platforms: Business-to-business commerce is often done via the services of websites like Oracle and Shopify, while business-to-consumer transactions are typically found on online retailers like Amazon. The third kind of eCommerce, which entails consumer-to-consumer transactions, takes place on sites like eBay.
While a profitable marketing strategy is essential to any business's success, it is all the more essential for eCommerce due to the highly saturated and competitive nature of almost anything to do with gaining traction online. Thus, it is imperative to constantly evaluate your ROI and conversion rate and retarget/remarket your strategy on all platforms you use to advertise.
Take some time to study the different types of eCommerce. Check out the picture on the right taken from a Twitter post.
Doing so can improve a multitude of KPIs for your business, including improved conversion rates, market expansion (via a lookalike audience), or just a more robust overall brand presence. One can also use remarketing tools to reach audiences who previously failed to reach your advertisement's CTA (call to action).
By consistently using some or all of these strategies, companies can position themselves much more favorably within the vast virtual landscape of eCommerce.
Ecommerce is essentially just an online retailer. Many people are familiar with Amazon as an eCommerce platform, which is a B2C business that has taken over the shopping world. When you are thinking of a product to buy, you think, "Oh, let me go check out Amazon and see if they have any good deals," rather than going to your local store because it's just easier to search something up on your phone rather than driving to a location and finding out that store doesn't have it, or it's not a price to your liking. This mindset has been the fuel behind the success of eCommerce businesses and why they are so popular today.
Advantages of eCommerce
Some of the advantages of eCommerce are speed, lower cost, international reach, and customer insight. You can't beat the fact that ordering from an eCommerce business is much faster than in-store in most cases. You can just look up the product you are looking for and order it right there without leaving the comfort of your own home. Often, the products are on the cheaper side as well, which drives more people to look into online retailers rather than waiting for that sale at your favorite store in the city.
On the business side of eCommerce, knowing your customer insights is a huge advantage because that will help your marketing efforts. When a customer buys a product off your website, you'll find out where they're from, how they heard about your site, etc. This will help with your retargeting in the future.
How to Start an Ecommerce Business Step-by-Step
People are always looking to buy online today, especially with how the retail industry space has changed in the last decade. Starting an eCommerce business is a smart move. To maximize your business, you need to take steps to ensure that your product or service is marketed effectively and drives traffic to your website.
Step 1: Product or Service niche
This is the critical step in developing your eCommerce business. You need to recognize the niche you want to tap into, whether fitness, beauty, home decor, etc. Typically, when you're first starting, you want to try and tap into a market that isn't too competitive, so you have a chance to actually make sales.
Step 2: Who are your Customers?
Another critical factor is identifying the right customers. Who are you selling to? This will help you identify the right market and HOW to market to your audience. If you are selling fitness apparel, you might be targeting young adults or a plethora of different demographics. However, it's essential to know when you start your eCommerce business. You want to focus on a particular audience. Once you get into the marketing side of things, you won't spend too much money targeting an audience that won't give you the best return.
Step 3: Create your Store
The next step is to create your online store! This is one of the most critical steps in the process because if you don't have an attractive-looking site, you most likely won't keep people interested in staying or coming back. This means you need to consider the design of your website and display the most information possible while still making it as simple as possible. When people visit your website, there should be a clear purpose while also being simplistic so that it's easy to navigate. Create the best shopping experience for your customer that will make them want to come back and purchase other products from you.
Step 4: Marketing
The last step in the process is marketing the products from your site. There are several ways to do this: marketing through different social media channels, email marketing, investing in ad space, etc. This part of the process is why it's important to know what audience you are targeting to spend as little money as possible and maximize what you are paying by driving traffic. After all of this, you are well on your way to successfully starting your eCommerce business.
The Buyer's Journey
When figuring out what product you want to sell on your website, you want to put yourself in the buyer's shoes. What is my buyer thinking about when they are surfing the web looking for that specific product. For example, let's say that this particular buyer is an athlete and needs some athletic clothing because they have run out of clothes.
Obviously, this is not an easy decision if the buyer doesn't have a specific product they turn to when shopping for athletic wear. The buyer goes through five steps when searching for a product, and it's essential to understand this when developing your website and marketing your product.
First, the buyer goes through the Awareness stage. They find out that they need something in their life going forward, so they do some research to find a product that suits their needs.
The next stage is pivotal and is a chance for you to differentiate yourself from your competitors. This is called the Research stage. While this person is researching different products, they encounter one or two that might pique their interest and become interested in that product. It's essential to be aware of this stage because you want to set yourself apart from the competition by showing how your product is better than another.
The third stage is Consideration, where the consumer is weighing out their options. They are looking at reviews, looking at other sites, and comparing different models to make the best decision for themselves.
The fourth stage is the Purchase stage. After the 3 initial stages, they have finally decided to purchase your product! Now comes the fifth and final stage, which is after the sale. You want to make sure that your new customer is happy with your product, whether that's sending an email to have them respond to a survey or possibly leaving a review on your website. Retaining that customer should be a top priority, so not only do they leave a positive product review for future customers, but they also come back to purchase more products from your website!
All these stages are critical for you to know when creating your product and website interface to better understand what your consumer is going through during the process of purchasing a new product.
Although creating a Facebook Ad campaign is an essential step to expanding your eCommerce business, the retargeting campaign that comes after is the most instrumental step to maximizing your ROI and conversion rates.
According to a Sleeknote article, the cart abandonment rate across all industries is about 70%; mobile user rates prove even worse at about 85%. So, having spent your hard-earned money on acquiring new customers, retargeting allows you to reach consumers who have recently interacted with your site, shop, app, or Facebook page.
With Facebook's remarketing tool, you can incorporate the use of dynamic ads which display to your customers the products or services they are most interested in, targeting those that'll most likely convert. You'll increase your chances of retaining loyal customers while encouraging them to come back for any new items later on!
If your industry is competitive, there is a high chance that consumers will do their research before making a purchase decision. In other words, those that have stumbled upon your site possess interests to some degree. Most brands put a lot of focus into the awareness phase, but you must remarket to them, so they remember you. By remarketing to them, you will have a greater chance of converting them.
When you retarget these consumers, they will see your ad in their news feed and are more likely to complete the purchase cycle. According to a Software Advice article, retargeted visitors are 70% more likely to convert than a brand new audience!
Stronger Brand Presence
Though many focus on conversions during the remarketing phase, your brand image becomes stronger indirectly when you do this, even when you don't get the sale! When you run ads on Facebook, and people see them, you also allow them to engage with it and make them feel heard. In turn, this will positively impact your image as people speak positively about your brand! This is free marketing! This also creates brand loyalty, which is essential for the long-term success of your business since repeat customers are easier to convince than new ones.
Furthermore, targeted ads on Facebook make your brand seem more significant than it is, making it seem omnipresent. Having the authority to control your ads and who sees it, you'll be able to fully optimize the use of your marketing dollar and overcome a variety of challenges.
Market Expansion with Lookalike Audiences
The last benefit that we will discuss is the ability to expand your market reach and create custom audiences. Previously, potential and existing customers were discussed, but new customers are just as important! Luckily, Facebook allows you to broaden your remarketing audience to those who share the same characteristics. This can be done by leveraging your custom audience list to create a lookalike audience. With this Facebook feature, you can target people similar to your existing customers and interested in your product or service and ultimately convert.
How to Retarget with Dynamic Ads
The retargeting process may sound like a complicated action, but you'll be surprised at how easy it is! Before we get into the steps, let's begin with 2 requirements: Facebook pixel and a catalog:
Facebook Pixel: a piece of code for your website that lets you measure, optimize and build audiences for your Facebook ad campaigns based on people's interactions and engagements with your website. Advertisers will be able to utilize the information collected to create ads that cater to the audience of their choice.
Catalog: a container containing information about the products/services you want to advertise or sell across Facebook. Facebook recommends using a single catalog for all your items instead of creating multiple ones. You can integrate an existing data feed if supported. If not, you can click here to learn how to create one.
Steps to Retargeting an Audience with Dynamic Ads
Before we move on, a reminder must be given to NOT PUT ALL YOUR VISITORS IN A SINGLE RETARGETING AUDIENCE. Many have made this mistake and regretted it, so it's recommended that you segment your audience. Make sure that 100% of your audience isn't similar.
Let's assume that you've already run a Facebook Ad and decided on a budget (5%-10% of your Facebook ad budget for retargeting ads) for your retargeting. Also, your Facebook pixel has registered 200 people that interacted with your website. On to the steps:
Create your Retargeting campaign ads. When selecting an audience, choose "Retarget ads…..on and off Facebook."
After you've entered several days for the ads to run, select Show Advanced Options where you'll be able to choose a Custom Audience or create a Lookalike Audience. According to Facebook, lookalike audiences possess similar demographics and interests as the audience that converted well for you, typically resulting in higher conversion rates and cheaper CPCs on a good lookalike.
Last but not least, you'll need to monitor your results and apply any changes that might need to be made. However, we recommend that you only alter one variable at a time (image, targeting, call-to-action button, etc.). This way, you'll be able to pinpoint what's effective for your campaign.
3 Strategies and Practices for Retargeting
As mentioned earlier in this section, Facebook is one of the most effective advertising tools that can potentially increase your ROI. That doesn't mean that you should mindlessly retarget all your visitors with the same offer. You need to get more sophisticated and creative with your retargeting. Here are 3 strategies you can employ to maximize the purchasing potential of each customer:
Strategy #1: Shopping funnel retargeting
Segmenting your audience based on a funnel stage is one of the most effective strategies on Facebook. We will discuss shopping funnel retargeting, meaning that you divide Facebook retargeting campaigns based on shopping behavior that indicates where users are in the customer journey.
So, based on how your visitors have interacted and engaged with your website, they will be presented with different offers that'll encourage them to finalize their purchase(s). The overall idea is to retarget prior visitors based on their shopping intent.
For example, for website visitors who only browsed your site, you can create one ad with a 7-days time window that offers free shipping. For visitors that added an item(s) to their cart, you can create one with a 14-days time window with an offer of 10% off their purchase.
Keep in mind that these are only examples, and you should always study your visitors' behaviors before you make an offer. Following a retargeting campaign, those who add an item(s) into their cart are 70% more likely to become buyers. You should exclude previous purchasers from all retargeting campaigns since the last thing they would want to see is you bombarding them with ads. Lastly, always avoid audience overlap since it can result in confusion and an increase in unnecessary costs.
Strategy #2: Retarget customers in Facebook groups
Targeting Facebook groups is one of the best ways to obtain access to a large number of people who possess similar interests. However, this may require some work since Facebook doesn't have this feature.
Create and post a video onto your business page, then immediately hide it by clicking the 3 dots at the top right. Note that the video's content shouldn't promote one of your products but rather something that aligns with the group's interest, such as posting a picture of a dog in a dog lover group.
Next, become a group member if you haven't already shared the hidden video with the group. The goal of this video is to accumulate as many views as possible. You can also engage and interact with viewers for more engagement by responding to comments, answering questions, etc. Now, you will be able to target this group in Facebook Ads Manager in the future!
Strategy #3: Engagement Retargeting
This method is another excellent way to lead prospects toward a conversion since you can choose different types of engagement to retarget audiences. Here are the different types of engagements: Facebook Page, Instagram Business profile, video views, ad engagement, and messages to your page.
After you've selected that, choose a time window. We recommended using a shorter time window for engagement audiences since their engagement and interest levels may not be as high as store visitors, cart abandoners, etc. However, if you need a longer time window, go for it!
Here is an example based on video engagement:
Engagement retargeting serves as a precursor for your other retargeting campaigns. As seen in the last example, once a user interacts with you, such as by viewing your video, you can retarget them with offers that don't require much commitment! Encourage them to take action!
Facebook Ads Conclusion
Retargeting on Facebook is one of the most essential strategies to implement if you hope to increase your ROI for your eCommerce business. When shoppers and visitors are reluctant to buy after just one visit, retargeting is a method that encourages them to revisit you and complete a purchase!
Remember that lumping all your visitors into a single retargeting pool will likely result in poor performance, low returns, and a wasted ad budget. We promise you the time spent segmenting your audience will increase your likelihood of success!
Now that we've given a brief overview of Facebook retargeting, we will move on to email!
Email retargeting is a marketing strategy that allows you to reintroduce a product to a specific audience member who expressed interest but failed to complete a CTA (call to action). Some examples of a call to action include making a purchase, visiting a website, or subscribing to a newsletter.
To implement email retargeting, you must utilize the information you already have about your clients to send them only the most relevant, highly targeted email campaigns. You'll need at least a fundamental understanding of behavioral marketing to properly execute email retargeting.
Behavioral marketing is the practice of keeping track of and monitoring the actions of your target audience. This is usually accomplished by keeping track of their website and purchase actions. It can also be done using third-party services to keep track of how your target audience is interacting with your business.
Website cookies are the most popular method of tracking these behaviors. These cookies are placed on a user's browser to monitor their actions. These can include things like what they click on, how they navigate your site, etc. However, this strategy is becoming more and more difficult due to the rise of various technologies that prevent or destroy cookies once a user quits their browser.
As of late, email marketers have been using remarketing pixels through email to track data. A tracking pixel is a tag included within the HTML code of an email that tracks a user's behavior after they've opened the email. These tracking pixels operate similar to website cookies and can help you learn more about your subscribers. However, they are considered much more efficient than cookies since they can't be blocked at the moment.
Helpful Tips for Email Retargeting
Tip #1: Use Email Segmentation
Email segmentation is breaking down your email list into smaller, more specific groups. Segmenting your audience allows you to precisely target those looking for particular information. It ensures that you don't send emails to those who have already purchased a product or completed another action.
Tip #2: Time is of the Essence
You should begin sending your email retargeting emails soon after someone leaves your website. The sooner you reach their email, the more likely they will return to your site and examine the service or product they previously dismissed.
Tip #3: Revive Inactive Subscribers
If you've observed an increase in your inactive subscribers, email retargeting is a great approach to remind them why they signed up in the first place. The goal is to remind them of what initially aroused their attention and persuade them to reconsider acting on a CTA.
Why you should implement email retargeting
Email retargeting can significantly boost revenue by providing the extra push to interested individuals to become clients. It turns out that 97% of people who come to your site for the first time depart without purchasing anything, and then they're gone for good. That is unless you're able to bring them back (potentially through email retargeting).
Retargeting efforts remind visitors of your products and services after visitors leave your website without purchasing. It allows you to retarget users who have visited specific pages and display relevant visual or text adverts when they visit other websites. Google Ads, Facebook retargeting, Linkedin Ads, and other retargeting ads can all be used to run retargeting campaigns. Retargeting is a critical tool for serious marketers today to interact with their customers and enhance sales and client loyalty.
In summary, the success of an e-commerce business often depends quite heavily on the online advertising strategy that said business has employed. With the internet being a very saturated market and competitive arena in which to sell goods and services, gaining traction with your target market can feel like an uphill battle in terms of increasing actual metrics of success. Implementing techniques such as well-researched dynamic advertising, consistent retargeting to customers, and even taking the proper initial steps to build out your e-commerce business can help make the return on investment much higher when it comes to your advertising budget.
We hope you enjoyed this article and found it helpful! Stay tuned for our next blog post!