Businesses spend thousands of dollars driving traffic to their websites. They’ll use different techniques ranging from SEO to social media marketing and even some paid campaigns. But the sad truth is that the majority of website visitors never convert during their first trip to a website. That’s where retargeting becomes instrumental.
A SaaS remarketing strategy helps you create an effective campaign to reach potential customers who have already interacted with your brand. More specifically, it helps you target website visitors who left your site without converting. But that’s only one use case of remarketing campaigns.
This article will take you through four SaaS retargeting campaigns and the platforms you can leverage. But before that, here is how to set the perfect foundation for your remarketing campaigns.
3 Things to Do Before Launching a SaaS Remarketing Campaign
To nurture and win back visitors to your website, there are three things you need to do.
1. Set Up a Tracking Pixel
Effective SaaS retargeting strategies rely on a tracking pixel. This is a piece of code deployed on your website. It then inserts a file (aka cookie) into the visitor’s hard drive, allowing you to track their behavior.
You can set up the tracking pixel for specific pages to enhance your SaaS remarketing strategy. For example, instead of retargeting everyone who visits your site, you can target those who interact with bottom-of-the-funnel content and critical pages like your pricing page. That may limit your retargeting audience, but it allows you to target visitors who are near the end of their customer journey.
You can also set up pixels to track CTA clicks, abandoned lead capture forms, and gated content like eBook downloads.
A word of caution. It can be disconcerting to see a Google ads banner for a product you researched on another website. To reduce the creepiness factor, you should be upfront and transparent about what you’re tracking and why.
The above map shows 137 countries with data privacy and protection legislation.
Allow visitors to opt out of receiving cookies and inform them of the benefits of using cookies, such as personalized user experiences or remembering items in the cart.
Another way to be transparent with visitors is to include messages on retargeted ads telling them why they’re seeing the ad, i.e. because they visited your website.
When you are upfront about your SaaS retargeting strategy, you build trust and confidence that you’re not misusing personal data.
2. Have a Powerful First-Touch SaaS Marketing Strategy
You can’t win customers back if there aren’t any in the first place. You need an effective first-touch SaaS marketing campaign to drive organic traffic to your website and generate leads.
For most SaaS businesses, the first point of contact isn’t the brand’s website. It’s an ad on LinkedIn (paid advertising) or a first-page placement on the search engine results page (SEO marketing), a backlink on a blog post (content marketing), or a referral from a friend (referral marketing).
Check out this brilliant SaaS marketing campaign example from Wistia.
In the series, Wistia explores the relationship between money and creativity. They create three marketing videos for their webcam and screen recording product using different budgets: $1,000, $10,000, and $100,000.
A video campaign like this one is very effective at generating leads. Video is extremely popular, accounting for 82% of internet traffic. Customers can also share them on social media and messaging apps, increasing your company’s reach.
Other digital marketing strategies you can use are social media marketing, influencer marketing, referral marketing, and PPC campaigns.
3. Choose the Appropriate Retargeting Platform
There are many SaaS marketing platforms to choose from. Check out this graph showing the channels marketers use for retargeting.
Facebook and Google are the most popular, with 77% and 69% of marketers using them. And with good reason.
Facebook has 2.99 billion MAU (monthly active users) and shows ads on Instagram and Messenger. You can create custom audiences by age, location, etc. The Google Display Network is the largest display ad network, showing your ads on the search results page and other websites in the network. You can segment visitors according to their browsing behaviors, such as homepage viewers or cart abandoners.
Now, just because most marketers use Facebook and Google doesn’t mean you should automatically do the same. Your remarketing channel should give you the best results when running retargeting ads. The one factor that determines the success of these ads is customers. Where does your target audience hang out?
For example, most B2B customers are on LinkedIn. That makes LinkedIn the best channel for retargeting B2B customers. The LinkedIn insight tag allows you to retarget people who have interacted with your website and LinkedIn page. It provides demographic insights about visitors, including job titles. That way, you’re targeting decision markers.
On the other hand, Facebook and Instagram can be excellent channels for B2C customers. Meanwhile, YouTube can work well for both types of customers. We’ll break down the different platforms for SaaS remarketing later on. Let’s now look at the different retargeting campaigns you must run.
4 SaaS Remarketing Campaigns You Should Run
We’ve talked about ‘the how’ of running a retargeting campaign. Now, let’s look at the who of SaaS retargeting strategy.
1. Retarget Website Visitors
We’ll start with the low-hanging fruit – website visitors.
According to Google, 96% of web visitors leave without making a purchase. That’s a lot of low-hanging fruit. The SaaS customer journey is complex, with multiple touchpoints. While you can’t convert everyone on the first visit, a SaaS remarketing strategy gives you other opportunities to entice them back.
The use case for retargeting website visitors is broad. You may want to set up different remarketing campaigns for prospects who visited your website once, those who only viewed your homepage or product page, and those who didn’t complete their purchase.
When creating retargeting ads, don’t show everyone the same ad. Consider the different stages of the customer journey.
For example, you can create a features explainer video for visitors who view your product pages. Additionally, providing social proof like customer success stories encourages qualified leads to complete the purchase. Finally, offer discounts to target customers who viewed the pricing page.
Additionally, consider the user’s behavior when they are on your site. For example, if you have multiple product offerings, you’ll need to retarget the site visitor with an ad creative relevant to the specific product they were looking at.
2. Retarget Free Trial Users
Free trials give new users a low-risk way of testing your product. Yet, many free trial users don’t convert to paying customers, making it one of the top SaaS marketing challenges.
There are several reasons to explain this. These reasons can influence the effectiveness of your retargeting campaign.
For example, users may not upgrade because the product is not a good fit for them. In that case, there’s not much you can do except conduct an exit survey and table any suggestions for later development. Two, the customer doesn’t see the value of your product or understand how to use it, pointing to an onboarding issue.
If trial users aren’t engaging with your product, remarketing helps nurture them through the trial period. Target them with product-focused content, like feature highlights or use cases demonstrating how the product solves problems. This encourages them to explore and use the software. You can also offer discounts to users to convert before the end of the trial period.
Free trial periods usually last between 14 to 30 days. The B2B buying cycle averages four months with multiple decision makers. You might lose these customers if you don’t extend the trial period.
Help Scout understand the B2B sales cycle is complex it allows potential customers to extend the free trial period by 15 days. They also ask for feedback to learn what’s preventing trial users from converting.
3. Retarget Churned Customers
A third audience segment to include in your SaaS retargeting strategy is churned customers. People stop using your SaaS solution for various reasons – they no longer need it, have found an alternative, or have had a bad customer experience. Remarketing allows you to win these customers back. They loved you once; you can make them love you again.
Find out the reason for the customer churn and focus on customers with a high chance of reconnecting. For example, if they left because they found an alternate product, market new features, and updates. If price is the friction point, incentivize them with offers, discounts, or rewards.
Check out the email marketing example below.
Typeform entices churned customers to return for limited-time discounts and extra features for each plan. Customers on the Business, Plus, and Basic tiers receive 25%, 20%, and 15% off, respectively.
4. Retarget Existing Customers with Upsells and Cross-Sells
You have ways of recapturing churned customers, but it would be better to prevent them from leaving in the first place. For this, you need a good customer retention strategy.
Taking care of existing customers isn’t just good business sense; it’s critical for SaaS businesses since they rely on recurring revenue.
The key to customer retention is demonstrating value. Some of your customers only use a fraction of your product features. This means they’re not maximizing the solution’s potential and experiencing its full effect.
SaaS retargeting can help you upsell and cross-sell to current customers. Upselling is effective with users approaching the limits of their current plan.
Loom allows free account users to record videos for up to five minutes. When users exceed the limit, the above in-app message activates, encouraging users to upgrade for unlimited recordings.
Cross-selling to existing customers is tricky. With upselling, you know customers get value from the product. The line isn’t clear with cross-selling. One way to avoid remarketing irrelevant products is by making paid features visible to all app users. When customers try to access locked features, activate the cross-selling notification.
Users must purchase the Semrush Trends product to access the Traffic Analytics reports. The SEO platform includes a free trial to reduce the friction of additional costs.
SaaS Retargeting Platforms
As mentioned earlier, you can run your SaaS remarketing campaigns on various platforms. Here are some of the top options alongside their pros and cons.
1. Google Ads
- Vast Reach: Google Ads allows businesses to display their ads across Google’s extensive network, including its search engine and partner websites.
- Advanced Targeting: Offers detailed targeting options based on keywords, demographics, location, and user behavior.
- Performance Analytics: Provides comprehensive analytics to measure ad performance and ROI.
- Complex Interface: Can be overwhelming for beginners due to its myriad features.
- Cost: Highly competitive keywords can be pricey.
2. Facebook Ads
- Huge User Base: Access to billions of users.
- Detailed Segmentation: Targeting based on demographics, interests, behaviors, and more.
- Visual Engagement: Supports various ad formats, including video, carousel, and slideshow.
- Ad Approval Process: Ads must adhere to Facebook’s guidelines.
- Decreasing Organic Reach: Organic reach is on the decline, making paid advertising more essential.
3. YouTube Ads
- Visual Engagement: Video content can be more engaging and memorable than text.
- Vast Audience: Second largest search engine after Google.
- Diverse Ad Formats: Options like skippable, non-skippable, and bumper ads.
- Content Creation: Requires high-quality video content.
- Short Attention Spans: Users might skip ads or leave before they finish.
4. LinkedIn Ads
- B2B Focus: Super ideal for SaaS companies targeting other businesses.
- Detailed Targeting: Options based on job titles, companies, industries, and more.
- Professional Audience: Engage with decision-makers and industry professionals.
- Higher Cost: Advertising on LinkedIn can be more expensive than other platforms.
- Niche Audience: Not ideal if targeting a broader or B2C audience.
SaaS Retargeting Strategy FAQs
A SaaS remarketing strategy allows you to market SaaS products to audiences that have visited your website or app.
The best SaaS remarketing channels are social media platforms like LinkedIn (for B2B customers), Facebook (for B2C customers), and YouTube, and search engines like Google.
For various reasons, not everyone who visits your website converts. But that doesn’t mean they’re lost forever. You can entice these prospects to return and use your product through a SaaS retargeting strategy.
If you’re not remarketing, you’re leaving money on the table. When done correctly, remarketing can help you win lost web visitors, free trial users, lost customers, and retain existing customers.
To successfully capture and retarget website visitors, you need to do three things: set up a tracking pixel to monitor visitors’ online activities, create a stellar first-touch marketing campaign, and choose the right retargeting platform.
That said, SaaS remarketing comes with its own set of issues. Data privacy is a sensitive topic for many target customers, and having highly-targeted ads follow them on social media or Google can be disconcerting. We recommend being upfront and transparent about how and why you’re tracking them.
Nico is the founder of Crunch Marketing, a SaaS marketing agency. He works with enterprise SaaS clients like Writer, Right Inbox, and Surfer SEO, helping them scale lead generation globally across EMEA, APAC, and other regions.