Have you ever been scrolling through Facebook and came across an ad for a specific product you were just looking at days or even minutes before on a different website. You see the ad and think to yourself “Wow! It must be fate! This is clearly a sign that I need to buy this amazing product!” Now, it might be fate that the exact product you were thinking about just so happens to be served to you in an ad, but the reality is a much simpler explanation.

Unfortunately, it’s not a divine sign from above telling you to buy those shoes, but rather, it’s an online marketing tactic called Remarketing, also known as Retargeting. It works by installing a tracking code on your website that will cookie visitors. These visitors will then be served ads on other platforms like Facebook. The ads follow visitors around the web and deliver specific offers.

Remarketing on Facebook

The opportunities to gain business on Facebook are endless. As of third quarter in 2015, Facebook recorded 1.55 billion monthly active users. A recent study found that of those users, 23% check their account five or more times every day and 47% of these active users believe this platform has the greatest impact on their purchase behavior. 22 billion Facebook ad clicks are recorded yearly and Remarketing ads see 3 times the engagement than regular Facebook ads.

There are multiple different options for Remarketing ads. You can set up a list to serve Remarketing ads to all visitors of your site or set up custom ads to only serve to certain people. Like visitors who only visited a specific page or who completed a specific action.

Different Remarketing Options

Facebook more commonly refers to Remarketing as “Custom Audiences.” The options for building a custom audience includes Customer List, Website Traffic, and App Activity. Below is a breakout of Facebook’s Remarketing options and how they can impact your ad’s performance.

Customer List: This is one method of Facebook Remarketing that you can set up which doesn’t utilize placing a tracking code on your website. Within Facebook, you have the power to serve personalized ads to a list of contacts. This type of ad delivery is similar to email marketing where specific ads are served to a group of people whose information you’ve previously collected.

These lists can be built by email addresses, phone numbers, or even Facebook users IDs. If this data is available to you or stored in a CRM, it can be uploaded directly to Facebook to target these users. Once you’ve uploaded the customer list into Facebook, these individuals will be retargeted with your ads as they scroll through the platform.

Website Traffic: This list will serve ads to people who visited your site within a set time frame. To utilize this type of Remarketing option, you will need to place a Facebook pixel on all pages of your site. From there you can set up specific audiences with custom filters based on actions these users have taken on your site, such as:

  • viewed a specific page
  • performed a search on you site
  • placed an item in cart
  • reached the checkout page but didn’t put in payment information
  • recently made a purchase

This is the perfect opportunity to serve ads with a discount code to viewers who placed items in cart but never made purchase. Another option is for customers who did purchase an item; serve them an ad with an upsell item that would complement their last purchase.

App Activity: This is a great Remarketing option if your business has an app. Just like website traffic, you can target based on app activity after placing the Facebook pixel within the app code. This method can serve ads to people who have completed actions like those who have recently opened your app, completed a purchase, or achieved a certain level if your app is a game.


Remarketing matches your customer’s intent and interest in your business with targeted ads. Because Facebook is the world’s most popular social platform, Remarketing on this platforms allows you to communicate to your customers on a site that they visit multiple times a day. You have a much higher chance to convert sales with these customers by taking advantage of their activity on Facebook by remarketing customers who have engaged with your website before and driving them further down the sales funnel. Remarketing ads show the best return on investment because of the fact that it targets the most relevant audience where they’re most likely to engage with your ads.

If you’d like to learn more about remarketing and how it can benefit your business, make sure and download our free white paper that explains all the different ways remarketing can be used to serve ads.