Google Remarketing: A Brief History and What the Future Holds

Google Remarketing: A Brief History and What the Future Holds

25th March 2010 was one of the most important dates in the history of Google AdWords. Aitan Weinberg, then the Senior Product Manager at Google, announced the birth of Remarketing, which gave advertisers the ability to re-market products and services to people abandoning their websites without taking any desired actions (purchase, enquiry, sign-up, etc).

Two and a half years later, and thousands of advertisers are now using this technology and the benefits that come with it.

Some of these benefits include:

  • Another chance for your business to recapture lost customers before they buy from your competitors
  • Advertising different product or service offerings depending on website visitor behaviour
  • Promoting special deals on specific products/services to target audiences that have previously shown interest in them
  • Associate your business brand with other industry websites, blogs and forums which consumers trust and have decided to visit


Shortly after Remarketing first launched, and the initial excitement about this new technology started to fade, advertisers realised that one of the hurdles of using Remarketing was the high volumes of tagging codes needed to keep it working at its maximum potential. In fact, each and every page on a website had to be “individually tagged” in order for different audiences to be remarketed to with specific product promotions.

Although this wasn’t a problem for advertisers who only wanted the Remarketing basics, large and/or advanced campaigns required that hundreds of codes be manually inserted in hundreds of pages. Which was not particularly efficient and practical to manage from a business resources point of view.

It didn’t take long for Google to realise the limitations that came with their Remarketing codes, so its product team released a new Remarketing tag. This is a single tagging code that gets placed in the footer of your website and enables Remarketing to work on all your site’s pages. Magic!

That was when things started to become fun and fast both from a code implementation point of view and in terms of the setting up advanced Remarketing strategies such as:

  • Promoting limited time discounts to visitors who abandoned the website at any steps of their shopping process to return, apply the discount, and buy
  • Promoting special product deals to target audiences who browsed for information on specific product categories, subcategories, or a certain product
  • Advertising free shipping on a range of DVD players to consumers who recently bought a TV (for example)

Although this was a huge step forward, some advertisers then started to think further ahead and wanted to know how to be able to use Remarketing with Google Analytics data, which contains valuable visitor behavioural insights such as time on site, bounce rate, number of pages viewed, etc. They were also interested in using Remarketing on Facebook fans who showed interest in a particular promotion and/or event. And what about Twitter followers? Linkedin connections? Pinterest followers?

Welcome to the next generation of Remarketing. Introducing Remarketing with Google Analytics. Free to try out, play with, and enjoy. You may also want to check out Driving Online Conversions with Google’s New Remarketing Solutions.

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We’ve been in the digital marketing field for over 18 years and worked with hundreds of Australian (and international) businesses to grow their web presence. Specialising in SEO, search ads (PPC), social media, content marketing, email marketing and conversion rate optimisation.

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