A Step-by-Step Guide to Facebook Retargeting

You spent time and money on developing the perfect target audience for your Facebook ads. But have you invested the same amount into Facebook retargeting? You should. Only two percent of consumers are ready to pull the trigger the first time they visit a new site.

Facebook retargeting is straightforward. When you retarget your audience, you fix your eyes on people who visited your website and promptly left without buying anything.

You likely experience retargeting yourself. If you ever put something in your cart and then close the window only to see the same images pop up across your social media reminding you what could have been, then you know what Facebook retargeting is.

Learning how to retarget on Facebook is going to blow your ROI through the roof and make your ad spend far more worthwhile. We’ll show you how to do it step-by-step.

What is Facebook Retargeting?

Facebook retargeting (sometimes called remarketing) is what people talk about when they say a site is following them around the internet.

Some people call it creepy. Others say it’s like being nagged. Whatever your feelings about it, there’s power in retargeting. The power remains even when your market knows exactly what you’re up to.

Retargeting means you follow your visitors around Facebook to remind them what they missed out on. Those customers are your lowest hanging fruit. It only makes sense to reach out and pick them.

How It Works in a Nutshell

Your ads follow customers across Facebook using the “Custom Audiences” feature. When someone visits your site, they leave with a code you can use to track and target them.

On Facebook, you retarget three different ways. First, you can use your customer list (or your current customers). Second, you set-up your website traffic to create a list of people viewed either your website generally or a specific page on your site. Third, you can create a list of people who took action in your Facebook app.

These hyper-targeted audiences already have an interest in you because they took a specific action. All you need to do to convert them is a bit of light stalking (read: retargeting).

How to Set Up Facebook Retargeting

Setting up Facebook retargeting isn’t rocket science. If you already run Facebook ads, then you have seen or even used these tools before. Here’s how to get it done as soon as right now.

1. Install Your Facebook Pixel

To use some features of Facebook’s retargeting option, you need a Facebook pixel on every relevant page of your website. Usually, this means all pages on your site.

The Facebook pixel measures cross-device conversions to see how your ads target customers. It also allows you to create the Custom Audiences needed for retargeting.

If you can access your own code, adding the pixel is easy.

Head to your Facebook Ads Manager and choose the following sequences: Tools – Pixels – Create a Pixel. Then add the pixel between the <head> tags on each page. If you can’t access your code, then your developer or webmaster can insert this for you quickly.

The pixel won’t retarget until you tie it to an ad campaign, so that’s your next stop.

2. Log-in to Facebook Ads Manager to Activate Retargeting

You already have a well thought out target audience, which means you are familiar with the first tool you need for Facebook retargeting: Facebook Ads Manager.

Once you’re in, choose the Tools menu and click Audiences.

3. Create Your Custom Retargeting Audience

From Audiences, choose Create Audience and then Custom Audience.

Now, refer back to the three audiences we listed above: Customer List, Website Traffic, and App Activity.

To use the Customer List function, import your list by uploading a file with your customer IDs (email, phone numbers, Facebook user ID). If you use MailChimp, there’s an integration that makes this easy.

To use the Website Traffic, you’ll need your pixel from the first step. When you select the Website Traffic Custom Audience, you then enter the parameters that are worthwhile for remarketing. For example, you can choose all visitors to capture every hit. Or if you’re having a sale, set the audience to everyone who visited your sale page.

We cover app activity in another article.

4. Tie Your Audience to Existing Ads or Create New Ads

Now that you have a custom audience, you need an ad to tie them to. You can use existing Facebook ads or create a new set that targets your new audience.

Facebook offers five dynamic retargeting options:

  • Viewed or added to cart but not purchased
  • Added to cart but not purchased
  • Cross-sell products
  • Upsell products
  • Custom combination

With an ad selected, you then choose the number of days that you want the action to occur. In other words, how long do you want to follow your target audience across the internet?

Don’t Retarget Without a Strategy

You don’t buy Facebook ads without a strategy, and you shouldn’t retarget without one either.

One common mistake is casting your net too widely. In other words, retargeting all visitors to your site from the last 90 days. Targeting every single click won’t do much for your conversion rates, and it comes across as desperate. Retargeting should be a firm reminder, not a plea for a purchase.

Create a strategy that’s hyper-focused on your goal. Tell customers why you can help them, and provide a specific action to take.

Transform Your Ad Spend and Gain Customers for Life

If you use Facebook ads, then you also need to use Facebook retargeting. These ads remind a qualified group of potential (or even current) customers to take a specific action. These are people who viewed your site and added an item to their basket. But they weren’t ready to pull the trigger – yet.

Remember that no retargeting campaign is complete without a strategy. Do you need help turning your goals into Facebook ad magic? Get in touch to learn about our paid social media services that will send your ROI soaring.