Remarketing Lists for Search Ads

This week Matt Umbro (@Matt_Umbro) came up with yet another great question set titled “Remarketing Lists for Search Ads.” The following is the transcribed Streamcap from the live chat:

Q1: Are you using Remarketing Lists for Search Ads? Why or why not?

  • Absolutely! Love me some remarketing across the Search Network! – Matt Umbro
  • Yup! – Heather Coan (@HeatherCooan)
  • I have before and I like it. Anybody any recommendations on how to use it specifically for B2B that doesn’t sell anything? – Christina Hall (@Chrissie_Hall85)
  • Just now testing this out, it looks pretty valuable. – Franco Puetz (@FrancoPuetz)
  • Yes. Though volume is generally small. – Jeremy Brown (@JBGuru)
  • Yes. They allow you to segment traffic – which is very important in direct marketing. – Steve Gibson (@stevegibsonppc)
  • Yes, testing cautiously. – Timothy Jensen (@timothyjjensen)
  • We’ve dabbled. I haven’t found a very high impact use for them yet. But I also haven’t had time to brain storm. – Andrew Bethel (@abethelga)
  • Yes, RLSAs can open an account up to keywords you couldn’t normally bid on. – Jeremyah Grigery (@JeremyahGrigery)
  • Yes but low traffic thus far in the lead gen space. – Nicole Mintiens (@Tregesy)
  • Just started a couple of campaigns. Excited to see the results. – Theresa Zook (@I_Marketer)

Q2: What types of results have you seen with RLSAs? How do they compare with other remarketing efforts?

  • As Jeremy Brown stated, low search volume, but generally pretty good cost per conversion and conversion rates. – Matt Umbro
  • Low volumes, high margins when using target/bid. Super high quality traffic. Quality declines when opened up to bid only. – Heather Cooan
  • Lower traffic but the intent is there. If only I could force users into my high intent segments. – Andrew Bethel
  • Generally good results, but because of low volume it’s not a place to spend a lot of time. – Jeremy Brown
  • Good way for clients to dip toes in the waters of remarketing while creating audiences for other types of campaigns. – Nicole Mintiens
  • Great results, awesome conversion rates and CPA in the B2C consumer electronics space. – Tally Keller (@tallykeller)
    • You are 100% correct. But your RLSA campaign traffic likely put most of our search campaign traffic to shame. – Neil Sorenson
      • I would assume it’s because the traffic is somewhat pre-qualified…so it’s not as ‘broad’ as it might seem. – Tally Keller
  • Volume low, but conversion rate high. – Leslie Drechsler (@ppcbuyers)

Q3: What types of keywords, match type and intent, do you go after in RLSA campaigns? Why?

  • Our RLSA campaigns haven’t been running very long… agree on the low volumes, still acquiring conversion data. – Andrew Baker (@AndrewBaker72)
  • Depends on clients and goals but can be broader with keywords and match types. More audience focused. – Jeremy Brown
  • Broad Match Everything! With such high intent I can still maintain goals (usually below) while maximizing exposure. – Andrew Bethel
  • Whatever is profitable/improves perf based on goal metrics. – Steve Gibson
  • Using broad match (to start–and with fear and trepidation). – Theresa Zook
  • Broad, purchase-related keywords. If someone is considering your bike, they’re prob looking for a helmet too-Bid on that. – Jeremyah Grigery
  • The volume is so low that I’m OK using straight broad match to visitors who have already come to the site. Plus I see it as incremental conversions and revenue, ie: wouldn’t use it as a main strategy. – Matt Umbro
  • You are already re-targeted so go Broad to maximise reach. – Andrew Baker
  • Testing bid increase on >3 page views on existing generic campaigns. only just set it up though to too early for results. – Rob Watson (@robpwatson)
  • I seriously dislike using regular broad match these days. I’ve seen more than a few people use only broad (not MBM) for RLSA. Why? – Neil Sorenson (@iNeils)
    • I agree in any other campaign, but RLSA the volume is low, plus you know only people who have come to your site see the ads. – Matt Umbro
    • I’m guessing because the traffic is guaranteed to be relevant. (Not always the case with broad – though I’m fan of broad.) – Steve Gibson
    • Even if a query is not relevant, at least that searcher recongizes your brand…but always good to review negatives. – Matt Umbro
      • Those are good points. Def can maximize traffic w/ straight broad match. Good to have the insights. – Neil Sorenson
        • Broad match is defintely terrible everywhere else, but it gives life to RLSA campaigns. – Matt Umbro

Q4: Talk about your RLSA strategies and why they are effective (or not effective)?

  • I don’t have any good strategies yet. Still dinking around with the campaigns trying to get them to grab volume. – Heather Cooan
  • In RLSA campaigns I tend to bid on generic categories to get some traction here…plus lists are bigger. – Matt Umbro
  • Since you know more about them you can use more creative ad messaging. – Robert Brady (@robert_brady)
  • Have tried out a few of the very broad RLSA KW targets. Stuff you’d never bid on for Search. Underwhelming but ok results so far. – Neil Sorenson
    • That’s just it…won’t significantly move the needle one way or the other, but a nice source of incremental conversions. – Matt Umbro
  • Depending on goals, you can get really aggressive. Bid on “software” for B2B software. – Jeremy Brown
  • Good for testing more general broad/short tail when the audience is already narrowed. – Timothy Jensen
  • Existing customers v prev visitors v non visitors. Different bids, respond to different ads. Varies client to client. – Steve Gibson
  • Has anyone tried duplicating an entire campaign to RLSA…would creating the lists be worth the effort? – Matt Umbro
    • I’ve duplicated many campaigns to RLSA. Creating the lists doesn’t take that much time right, what’s the downside? – Neil Sorenson
      • If your campaign contains invidivual product ad groups the audiences might never get enough traffic. Though I suppose creating remarketing lists would be a good task for an intern. – Matt Umbro
        • True, obv the campaigns that are low traffic prob aren’t the best candidates for copy. But any generic hi volume? Boom. – Neil Sorenson
  • What do you do different compared to regular Remarketing campaigns? – Christina Hall

Q5: How do your RLSA ads differ from standard Search Network text ads?

  • When I can, RLSA ads are more in line with offers in regular remarketing ads. – Matt Umbro
  • They already know the brand, so tell them why they should pick you over all the competitors. – Robert Brady
  • Less awareness, more closing. Maybe even a discount or making free shipping more prominent for e-commerce. – Jeremy Brown
  • Usually by not much. Sometimes mention the brand, but I find assuming they remember you can be wishful thinking. – Steve Gibson

Q6: Are RLSA campaigns now part of your standard builds for clients? Why or why not?

  • No. Still learning about them. Nothing becomes ‘default’ until I’m comfy with it. – Theresa Zook
  • Not quite yet, but all bigger clients (whose lists grow quickly) do make use of RLSAs from the beginning. – Matt Umbro
  • Not yet, but they are one of the first tests when we’re ready to move past initial builds. – Heather Cooan
  • More brand focused, however be careful to stick to policy & not indicate you are aware of their site interaction via ad text. – Andrew Baker
  • I will say that clients have overall been very encouraged by the notion of RLSAs and early results. – Matt Umbro
  • More brand focused, however be careful to stick to policy & not indicate you are aware of their site interaction via ad text. – Andrew Baker
  • Depends what I’m being asked to do. Low volumes in a lot of markets, can be a “nice to have” rather than “willing to pay for”. – Steve Gibson
  • Not standard yet…the volumes don’t justify it. However, they can be quick to set up for higher volume clients. – Jeremy Brown
  • Is RLSA available for similar audiences and would it even make sense to try this tactic? – Matt Umbro
    • They will do, especially eCommerce clients (which most are). – Andrew Baker
    • Always worth testing new features. You never know what works until you try it! – Andrew Bethel
    • Not if you’re using broad match! (Altho now you’ve mentioned it, I’d be fascinated to test.) – Theresa Zook

Q7: What other insights/information can be gleened from RLSA campaigns to be used elsewhere in PPC accounts?

  • You might be able to create additional DN remarketing campaigns around new themes. – Matt Umbro
  • Any unique/new themes on RLSA that convert could be tried out for traditional search. – Neil Sorenson
  • Broad Match! Use Search Query Reports for keyword research from your most qualified audience. – Craig Galyon (@craiggalyon)
  • Copy testing insights can be applied to the website. – Jeremy Brown
  • I have one client where expected existing signups (free trial) wouldn’t convert – but they do. – Steve Gibson
  • Broad match may actually be effective somewhere in an account. – Robert Brady

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More PPCChats

Don’t forget to stay tuned for the next #PPCchat on Tuesday at 12 noon Eastern, 9 am Pacific and 5pm in the UK. Same Chat time, same Chat channel.


Check out the PPCChat Twitter list to see and connect with all current and prior participants.

• Matt Umbro (@Matt_Umbro)
• Paul Kragthorpe (@PaulKragthorpe)
• Andrew Baker (@AndrewBaker72)
• Andrew Bethel (@abethelga)
• Christina Hall (@Chrissie_Hall85)
• Craig Galyon (@craiggalyon)
• Franco Puetz (@FrancoPuetz)
• Heather Coan (@HeatherCooan)
• Jeremy Brown (@JBGuru)
• Jeremyah Grigery (@JeremyahGrigery)
• Leslie Drechsler (@ppcbuyers)
• Neil Sorenson (@iNeils)
• Nicole Mintiens (@Tregesy)
• Rob Watson (@robpwatson)
• Robert Brady (@robert_brady)
• Steve Gibson (@stevegibsonppc)
• Tally Keller (@tallykeller)
• Theresa Zook (@I_Marketer)
• Timothy Jensen (@timothyjjensen)

No Remarketing Lists Here, Only Streamcaps

This is a guest post by Paul Kragthorpe; WebRanking SEM Manager in Minneapolis, Minnesota, #PPCChat Streamcap Grabber, SEO Blog Author. Connect with me @PaulKragthorpe, and Google Plus.

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2 Responses to Remarketing Lists for Search Ads

  1. […] Remarketing Lists for Search Ads, PPC Chat Streamcap […]

  2. Inbound Dan says:

    Looks like you guys had a great discussion on search remarketing, it’s a pity I missed it.
    I’ve just put together a complete guide to remarketing for search and I’d love your thoughts on it:

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