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Remarketing is a key part of most (if not all) successful digital marketing strategies. It’s a best practice to include some variation of retargeting when managing SEM accounts. Typically, these audiences consists of people who clicked on your ad, visited your site, but did not convert (or meet whatever requirement you have set as a conversion goal).

Most people know how the Google Display Network (GDN) works and why we should use it to remarket to people (by serving our ads on other websites within the GDN). It’s common knowledge and best practice to leverage at least one GDN campaign for remarketing. Now what if we had that same power within the Google Search Network? We do – and we have for about three years, but I’d argue that it’s been under-utilized – and this helpful little feature is called RLSA or Remarketing List Search Ads.

The beauty behind RLSA (which lets you do a lot of cool tricks) is that we can target people from our remarketing audience lists combined with keyword search intent on the search network! Why should this matter? Because remarketing on the GDN can become costly fast. With RLSA, we have the ability to target an audience list (for example: abandoned shopping cart or abandoned sign-up) and combine that with keywords on the search network.

RLSA is a more cost-efficient and strategic way of remarketing to people who did not convert on our site but are actively searching terms we’re targeting on the search network. I would much rather invest my remarketing budget in consumers who visited my site and are still in the market because of their search intent (research stage). With traditional GDN remarketing, there is a higher likelihood that we’re serving ads to consumers who’ve converted with a competitor site.

In addition to regular remarketing, we can leverage RLSA in more ways. We can target consumers searching our competitor terms, which have been to our site but are shopping around. Depending on what industry we’re in, we can cross-sell products and create more sale opportunities. For example, a retail website has someone buy shoes from their site and converts. But, what if you want to sell them other running apparel? Now you can in an effortless way, which will create (hopefully brand-loyal) customers. Finally, we can keep current customers engaged with new features or updates to services/products, etc. It’s very important to continue to engage with consumers who have visited our site, especially the converting ones!

Bottom line, remarketing is essential in most industries for their digital marketing strategy. Traditional GDN remarketing is still great, but it’s worth checking out RLSA. Why spend more on a larger audience net, when you can spend less on people familiar with our site and actively searching our keywords?

RLSA is really easy to implement; here are two great “how-to” articles from Google and Wordstream.

Good luck!

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Nick Avram
Nick Avram, who joined 3Q Digital in October of 2012, graduated from Michigan State University with a degree in Advertising while receiving a New Media Driver's License Certificate. He fell in love with paid search marketing after obtaining an internship at Performics, where he worked on campaigns for a Fortune 500 retail client. In his free time, Nick enjoys playing sports, watching movies, listening to music, snowboarding, and spending time with family and friends.