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Shopping Remarketing Lists Can Increase Your CTR & CVR by 400%

July 23, 2018

When Google introduced Remarketing Lists for Search Ads (RLSA) in July 2013, advertisers welcomed the ability to cater their bids, ads, and targeting to better reengage their past site visitors on both Search and Display. But savvy advertisers lamented one notable omission from the RLSA targeting – advertisers couldn’t apply an RLSA target to a shopping campaign. Well, fret no more! As of yesterday, Google has announced that RLSA targeting options for shopping campaigns are now available to all AdWords accounts in the form of Shopping Remarking Lists.

RLSA for shopping campaigns gives advertisers the ability to either exclusively target past website visitors to reach on the SERP with their shopping ads or bid more aggressively for users based on their past engagement on their site. Advertisers can leverage any existing remarketing audience list in their account eligible for RLSA, including the newly announced customer match audiences.

Sophisticated marketers should absolutely take advantage of the new targeting, as our Beta testers have shown amazing results:

past engagement remarketing shopping lists

In a cohort of 26 early adopters, advertisers saw returning visitors have double the click-through rate and conversion rate of new visitors. But advertisers who were targeting more engaged users like shopping cart abandoners and past buyers saw conversion rates 5 and 6 times higher than that of new visitors! Given the amazingly different performance of these audiences, advertisers found that the better converting traffic was worth bidding more aggressively on with a bid adjustment.

MORE: RLSA for Competitive Industries

Shopping Remarketing Lists Decrease CPA Too

Even with a large bid adjustment, many advertisers only saw their CPC for these audiences rise by a few cents. The result was, in most cases, that these audiences converted at CPAs nearly one quarter that of the rest of their shopping efforts.

Most users chose to add these audiences as “Bid only” audiences, but a few took it one step further and added them as “Target and bid” audiences, which allows you to exclusively serve shopping ads to users who had previously been to your site. While these users saw similar improvements in CTR, CVR, and CPA, it’s worth noting that many saw significant decreases in reach from this “Target and Bid” approach, in many cases losing as many as 98% of their total impressions from these shopping campaigns, so be cautious applying this type of ad targeting.

target and bid remarketing shopping lists

How to Set Up Shopping Remarketing Lists

Advertisers can add remarketing lists as targets to their shopping campaigns similarly to how they add them to their display or search campaigns. Within the shopping ad group, select the “Audiences” tab, then hit the “+Remarketing” button. From here, you can add any existing remarketing list(s) and select either the “Bid only” targeting (recommended) to set a bid adjustment for these returning audiences or the “Target and Bid” option to exclusively serve ads to these users.

how to remarketing shopping lists

Whether you’re new to managing shopping campaigns or you’ve been doing it forever, this new RLSA targeting option for shopping campaigns is sure to take your campaigns to new levels this holiday season!

Data Sources

Data is based on a sample size of 26 accounts (WordStream clients) with early access to RLSA for shopping while the product was in Beta. The report incorporates data from shopping campaigns on the Google Search Network in September 2015.

Mark Irvine

Mark Irvine

Mark is a Senior Data Scientist at WordStream, focused on research and training for the everchanging world of PPC. He was named the 5th Most Influential PPC Expert of 2017 by PPC Hero.