Stalked Across The Internet

Stalked Across The Internet

Have you ever visited a website only to be greeted with a feeling of Deja Vu as you move between websitess. Have you ever had the feeling a website it following you?

Why are you being stalked across the internet?


This type of paid advertising is called re-targeting, the idea is to acknowledge you have visited a site and to give gentle reminders to you as you browser other properties that the other site exists and you may want to return.

You may have thought about buying the product of service from that website, but never got around to finalising your purchase for whatever reason. Re targeted ads are a way to remind you of that visit and perhaps entice you into pulling out your credit card.

How It Works

When you visit a website that is doing re-targeting marketing, your browser will have a small piece of code added called a cookie.

This is added from a script added to the target site.

You then visit another property that is running ads, the ad script on that site spots you have been to site X and displays a relevant advert for site X.

Here’s an example; I visited the home page of Freshbooks.com (an excellent service I highly recommend and use for all my quotes and invoices) I was looking for their integration guides to see if I could connect up a CRM tool I’m evaluating.  I then went to read some stories on clientsfromhell.net and this is what happened.


Why It Work

I’m no advertising guru but I think it’s based on the same principle that people need to be exposed to the same message 7 times before they make a purchasing decision.

By gently prodding people with an ad for a site they have just visited this principle is.

Who Does It?

There are a number of companies doing re-targeting, the two big players are

  • Google  – the example you saw was Google re-targeting.  I visited a site and a site running Google Adsense shows an ad
  • Facebook – when I visit a site and then return to my Facebook feed, ads for that site will start to appear.

Wrap UP

Re targeting is a very effective if a little sinister was to keep you companies products or services at the forefront of people’s minds, give it a go.

Photo Credit: Jake Sutton via Compfight cc

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