Display Campaigns and Retargeting

We focus on running a dedicated retargeting display campaign and resume using the retargeting lists in our search campaigns, this is a crucial part of any Google Ads strategy.  For any product or service, retargeting takes on on the role of keeping your product in the consumer's consideration set long term.

We create campaigns to target users along their journey, and make sure that we add focus on most recent visitors by creating the following structure

  1. Website visitors - 001 days

  2. Website visitors - 007 days

    1. Bidding down by 25% of the 1 days audience

  3. Website visitors - 030 days

    1. Bidding down by 50% of the 1 days audience

  4. Website visitors - 540 days

    1. Bidding down by 90% of the 1 days audience

Once things are running for a while, we tend to transition to SMART bidding and then deleting all but one of the targeting groups.


For any account we focus on getting retargeting working first, then switch to leverage our creative as much as possible using display campaigns.  We’ve seen a ton of success with Custom Intent audiences across search and display and that would be an interesting test.

Audience testing tiered hierarchy:

  1. Custom Intent

    1. Custom intent allows you to expand outside of predefined audience categories, identifying new prospects that are likely to be in the market for your product or service. 

    2. We can choose Google Search keywords that users have searched in the past

      1. We can create targeting around people who have searched for competitors or our top non branded terms

      2. We can also target based on users who have been to competitor websites

    3. Google builds audiences based on consumers’ behavior on the web, allowing you to target audiences who have demonstrated an interest in similar products. Thanks to this close connection to intent to purchase, custom intent targeting is a great conversion-driver.

  2. “Similar To” Audiences

    1. Once we figure out which retargeting list is strongest, we can also focus on users similar to those audiences

    2. This will operate similarly to lookalike audience targeting in Facebook.

    3. Google will create an audience to target people similar to the users you identify as being of high value

If we can get these audiences to each work, we start moving further out to widen the net.  We move to targeting based on interest groups or custom affinity. If we continue to see success, we move into a world where we targeting based solely on demographics.

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