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Who is Watching Me When I'm Online?? Remarketing 101

Remarketing is a buzzword in online advertising right now. Remarketing, in its simplest terms, is when a visitor goes to a website and visits a specific page or set of pages(pre-defined by the advertiser), and then in subsequent browsing sessions is followed around by an ad from that website. For example, let's say I go Amazon.com and am searching for a baseball bat for my son. I browse through a few baseball bats and decide not to buy. Later that day, I see an ad for Amazon with one of the bats I was looking at on sites like weather.com, youtube.com, and inforum.com. Unsettling? Creepy? Maybe at first, but once you understand what is behind the mechanism, you almost need to tip your hat at clever way you are being marketed to. How it works is a cookie is created in your browser which puts your IP on a list as someone who has visited this particular website; at this point, whenever you visit sites within the display network of the remarketing service, you will be served ads from the original website. This process can have benefits on both sides of the counter. As a consumer, it can remind you that you need to buy something (i.e. anniversary gift.) As a retailer, it serves as a reminder to the consumer that you have what they are looking for and they can buy it from you...now!

Data on the effectiveness of remarketing is all over the map. But for the most part, evidence points towards higher click through rates, higher conversion rates, and higher impressions. In most cases, these benefits come at a lower cost. If you as a retailer have a product or service that might make sense to remarket, I would highly encourage you to look further into it and give it a try!