Creating your first Retargeting campaign

To get you started, we will overview everything needed to launch your first Retargeting campaign.

In this guide, we will review: 

Before getting started

Create your Retargeting campaign efficiently by considering these things: 

  • Your website needs to:
    • be fully functional
    • display a privacy policy informing visitors that cookies may be used for third-party advertising
  • Ensure your website and ad content are:
    • family-friendly
    • explain your business in a way that is easily understood
  • Confirm that a valid payment method is stored in your SendinBlue account
  • You may want to create an account with an online web design tool to help you design your ads (e.g. Canva, BannerSnack, Bannerwise, etc.)

The goal of retargeting is to continually re-engage your website’s regular visitors and convert those who are just “window shopping”. 

Good to know: When setting up your Retargeting campaigns, you always want to have a clear goal in mind, starting with: Who is this aimed at and what would you like them to do? 

You may be aiming to only have those who have abandoned their cart return or to bring back a larger audience of anyone who did not buy something on their last visit.

With this in mind, you’re ready to really get started!

What is a Retargeting campaign? 

Retargeting campaigns consist of 4 key elements: 

  1. A group of people (or "Audience") - who you want to re-engage after they interact with your website, email campaigns, etc.
  2. One or a few banner ads - what you will display to this group while they browse online 
  3. Your website - where your ads will redirect people who click on your ads
  4. Your weekly budget - determines how many views (called "impressions") your ads receive, and how many total people you can reach

Installing the website tracking code

In order to monitor your website visitors' behavior and whether they achieve your goals, you need to add a bit of code (also called a "script") to your website. 

Click on your desired option and follow the prompts to install the script. 

Good to know: This step only needs to be done once. If you skip installation, you will be re-prompted each time a new campaign is created. 

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Installation via plugin

If you are using a WordPress/WooCommerce or Prestashop website, you can easily install the tracking script via the SendinBlue plugin for WordPress or Prestashop. Once installed, you can add the tracking script to your site by enabling the option in the plugin settings:

Manually install the script

You can also add the script directly on your site by adding the code. Click on “Install the tracking code” to copy the code. Follow the on-screen prompts to place the code on your website. 

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Once installed via the plugin or manually, you will need to perform a simple check to ensure the script is working properly. Visit your website and then click on the green Verify button. The pop-up window will refresh to confirm if your activity was recognized by the tracking script. 

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Review this guide for more information about installing the tracking script.

Skip script installation  

You may choose not to install the script. In this case, you will need to have at least 1,000 contacts in your SendinBlue list to have a viable audience for a Retargeting campaign.

1. Creating your campaign 

To create your campaign, start by giving it a name (for internal use) and specifying a URL to receive the people who click on your ads. 

When selecting a URL, consider who will be shown your ad and what action you want them to take after clicking. 

Good to know: For ads to be accepted by the websites ("ad network") who will display your ads, ads must redirect to a URL that follows the Website Guidelines. For more information about the website guidelines, please review this article.

 

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2. Choosing your audience

Audiences are where you store groups of website visitors or contacts to include or exclude from a Retargeting campaign.  

In this step, you will select the website visitors or contacts to whom your ad will be displayed. You may choose to target all of your website's visitors or a specific group of people.

Good to know: A Retargeting campaign should include (or "target") at least 1,000 people. These people may be website visitors or email subscribers. 

2.1 Target all of your website’s visitors

If you have installed the script, we will be able to automatically identify those who have visited your website, and be able to give you a count of how many people you can reach. This audience includes all identified visitors to your website. 

If you create a campaign before 1,000 website visitors have been identified on your website, don't worry: you can still continue scheduling your campaign. 

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2.2 Target a specific audience

Choose this option if you want to target website visitors who do (or do not) complete certain actions on your website, such as making a purchase or watching a video. 

You may also use this option to target a specific group of email contacts. 

Good to know: If you have not already created a Retargeting audience, you can create an empty Audience directly from this step and add contacts later. 

You can choose Audiences to include in, or exclude from, your campaign.retargeting-campaign_5_EN.png

After creating your Audience, use SendinBlue's Automation platform to create a workflow which adds your desired website visitors or contacts to your Audience(s). Remember, Audiences can contain people that you want to include or exclude from seeing your ads. 

This workflow can be dedicated to adding people to an Audience or can contain a more broad experience for your contacts. 

For example, if you already have a workflow that sends an abandoned cart email to contacts who add an item to their cart but do not purchase it within 3 hours, you may wish to update your workflow to include Retargeting. You might set up your workflow to wait one day after the email is sent and if a purchase is still not made, add the contact to your Retargeting audience. 

You can read more about creating your Retargeting audience in this guide.

3. Designing your campaign

When designing your banner ads, there are a few things to keep in mind.

Ads will be viewed across a variety of websites and they share common ad content guidelines. To ensure your ads can be displayed, your campaign designs, content, and linked websites must respect these guidelines. 

3.1 Content guidelines

Please be aware that there are a few categories of ad content that are not accepted by ad networks for display:   

  • Adult content and body images: Content in your ads must be appropriate for all ages. Ads that contain nudity, graphic language, or adult concepts will not be accepted. Ads with unnecessary skin exposure or cleavage, ads designed to solicit a sexual response, and ads that include "before and after images" will also not be accepted.
  • Alcohol: Ads which depict alcohol or alcohol consumption
  • Shock value: Ads that are designed to be visually disturbing, gory or designed to shock or scare
  • Spam tactics: Any ads that mislead a visitor (by imitating computer functions, other media, initiate prompts, etc.) are prohibited
  • Strobing and flashing lights: ads should not overtly distract the user from page content
  • Personally targeted messaging: retargeting is highly sensitive to user privacy and ads must focus on the products and not the person viewing it
  • Violence and weapons: ads may not depict violence or firearms

Your ads should communicate a clear message, and viewers should have a clear understanding of the brand being depicted. The brand in the ad must match the brand on the website.

For more information about these content guidelines, please review this article.

Good to know: Due to the Toubon Law, ads displayed in France must be only in French or include a French translation. This applies to ads shown on French IPs, and not just to .fr domains.

3.2 Ad dimensions 

You have multiple sizes to choose from when it comes to your ads! The accepted sizes are:

  • Medium Rectangle: 300x250 (mobile and desktop)
  • Leaderboard: 728x90
  • Wide Skyscraper: 160x600
  • Large Rectangle: 300x600
  • Mobile Leaderboard: 320x50 (mobile only)
  • Billboard: 970x250

3.3 File types & size

The accepted file types for web ads are .JPG and .GIF.  

Good to know: Ads may not exceed 150KB in size. HTML5 files are not currently accepted.  

4. Scheduling your Campaign

Now that you’ve chosen your audience and designed your ads, it's time to schedule your campaign. It’s as easy as pressing the Schedule button!

4.1 Choose a start date

Once you do, you will be prompted to choose your start date. It can be as soon as possible or scheduled for a future date.

Good to know: When scheduling your campaign, remember that your campaign will be reviewed by our ad network partner, AdRoll. You will be notified via email and in SendinBlue when your campaign is approved. Continue reading more below.

4.2 Confirm or update your audience size

Before you choose your budget, you will need to confirm or update your weekly estimated audience size. We will recommend your budget based on this estimation.

If the Retargeting tracking script has been installed for any period of time, an estimated audience size will automatically be displayed. You may override default estimation by inputting your own. Updating the estimated audience size will automatically refresh your recommended weekly budget. 

If you are using a plugin like WordPress or Prestashop, you can locate your audience statistics here:

If you have integrated your site with Google Analytics, this will also give you an idea of your average weekly visitors.

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4.3 Choosing your budget

The recommended budget is calculated to help you reach the largest portion of your audience the optimal number of times to act. You may decrease or increase the weekly budget amount if desired.

If you decide to decrease your weekly budget, your ads may not reach all of the people in your audience.  

If you decide to increase your weekly budget, you will reach your entire audience but may display more impressions per person than needed to drive action. If your campaign goals include brand recall (in addition to conversions), increasing your budget is an effective branding strategy. Campaigns are optimized to balance performance vs. budget, though, so the system may not spend your full budget. 

4.4 Authorize your campaign

When you are ready, click Schedule and then Let's go! in the confirmation. 

Please remember to review and accept the SendinBlue Terms & Conditions before scheduling a campaign. 

Campaign review & approval process

SendinBlue has integrated with AdRoll, an industry-leading partner, to offer this feature. While campaigns are set up and managed directly inside of your SendinBlue account, each campaign is reviewed by AdRoll.  

5.1 Why are campaigns reviewed? 

AdRoll reviews campaigns to confirm compliance with the content guidelines so that your ads will be accepted by the websites that your contacts are browsing on.

Please review the content guidelines and best practices before submitting your ad for review.

5.2 How long does approval take?

Please allow up to 72 hours for approval as campaigns are individually reviewed by AdRoll's compliance team. (Expedited reviews or same-day approvals cannot be guaranteed). 

Campaign billing

Retargeting campaigns are prepaid weekly. The amount charged is determined by the weekly budget amount you approve during the campaign scheduling step.

You will receive an invoice weekly, which can be downloaded from your SendinBlue account in the My Plan section. Invoices note the number of ad impressions you were charged for the week, as well as the total weekly cost. Your invoice will also note the balance you have used and the amount that will roll over to the next week.

First billing date 

Billing begins one day before the start date of the campaign, or on the start date if you choose an immediate start. 

If you selected the current day or the next day as your start date, you may be charged for the week before your campaign launches, if approval takes a full 72 hours.

If your start date is 2+ days in the future, your first weekly charge will occur after campaign approval. 

Recurring billing schedule

Your next payment will be automatically processed one week after the first payment and will continue on a weekly basis until you pause your campaign. Invoices will be automatically emailed to you on a weekly basis. 

Please note: SendinBlue does not accept pre-payment for more than one week in advance. 

Unused, deferred budget

If you do not use your full budget for the week, the unused budget will be added into your SendinBlue account to roll over into the following week.

On your normal weekly billing day, your weekly budget amount will be paid from your existing SendinBlue balance first. Only the difference will be charged to your payment method.

For example: If in week 1 you were charged $20, but only used $15, you will have $5 left over. When you are charged for week 2, the leftover $5 will be applied first and your payment method will only be charged $15 to make up the balance.  

If you discontinue using Retargeting campaigns and would like to "cash out" your SendinBlue available positive balance, please contact our customer care team. We would be happy to process this refund for you.

Good to know: Only positive available balances may be refunded. Charges for valid services rendered (advertising impressions consumed by your campaign) are not eligible for a refund. 

Understanding your campaign budget report

To view a breakdown of your weekly budget utilization, click on your desired campaign and then click on the Budget tab. 

You will see five columns showing the following metrics per week: how much you allocated for the week, how much budget was deferred from the previous week to the current week, and what was actually debited from your payment method for this week, plus the current week's spent vs. remaining budget amount.  

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Budget terms: 

  • Allocated: the total amount you are paying for this week (the approved weekly budget) 
  • Deferred: unspent budget rolled over from the previous week (the previous week's "remaining" amount)
  • Debited: the amount charged to your payment method to fund your current weekly budget
  • Spent: the amount of your weekly budget that was actually used
  • Remaining: unspent budget from the current week (will become the next week's deferred budget, if not spent) 

At the bottom of the page, you will see the total you have spent on this campaign, and how much will roll over to the next week.

Further reading