How to Use Facebook Retargeting for Your Ecommerce Business

How to Use Facebook Retargeting for Your Ecommerce Business

Whether they know it or not, most social media users have been advertised to using Facebook retargeting. When an item or brand they have just viewed on an ecommerce website shows up in their social media feed, they might just think it is a coincidence. In actuality, the ad was uniquely tailored to them. Retargeting, which is also known as remarketing, allows advertisers to show personalized ads to users based on their activity on their websites. A Facebook retargeting campaign utilizes data from a Facebook pixel to customize advertising for potential customers when they leave the website and log onto social media. If this all sounds a bit too high-tech, don’t worry — anyone can use Facebook remarketing. Read on to gain a better understanding of how Facebook retargeting works, how it can benefit your online business, and how to do it yourself.

What is Facebook Retargeting?

Facebook retargeting is a marketing strategy that enables advertisers to serve their customers ads based on items the customers viewed on their website. Facebook remarketing works using the Facebook pixel, which is a special piece of code that allows your website to collect data on users who view particular items, and display unique ads based on those items when the user looks at their social media accounts. 

Basically, Facebook retargeting creates a custom advertising experience for each potential customer who visits your website. This method of personalized advertising is effective at raising your ROI. Read on to learn more about how Facebook remarketing can help increase sales, reel in customers who you otherwise might have lost, and prove to be an effective marketing strategy for your online business.

sheertex remarketing campaign

6 Benefits of a Facebook Retargeting Campaign

How does Facebook retargeting help you increase ROI? What makes it worthwhile to run a Facebook remarketing campaign for your ecommerce business? There may be some hidden benefits that you have not yet considered. Here are just a few of the ways that Facebook retargeting can help your business convert website visitors into customers. 

1. Shoppers buy from you over other businesses

Your online shop may sell products or services that are similar or even identical to things that are sold on your competitors’ websites. Facebook retargeting is a great way for you to get a leg up on those competitors and make sure that shoppers ultimately make their purchase from your website rather than a competitor’s site. While they shop around, they might look at various websites but if they stop their search before making a purchase, you could use Facebook remarketing to reach them with a social media ad that could sway them into making the purchase, and conveniently doing it on your website.

2. Remind shoppers of items left in their carts

Facebook retargeting can help you reach customers who loaded their carts with products on your website but left without making a purchase. This phenomenon, which is often called cart abandonment, is an opportunity for businesses to follow up with potential customers. Sometimes this can be done using email marketing, but if you don’t have an email address to reach them with, remarketing may be your best option to bring those cart-abandoning customers back in. Rather than using pop-ups to collect email addresses, you could simply use the Facebook pixel to collect valuable customer data and reach them with ads for the products left in their carts after they’ve left your website. 

wayfair retargeting example

3. Increase brand recognition

You want people to remember your brand, even if they sought out your website for other reasons. Whether or not you’re successful in bringing customers back to your website using Facebook retargeting, you’ll increase brand recognition either way. Customers might ultimately decide not to purchase the product you are targeting them with, however, if they see your brand in a Facebook ad, they will be more likely to think of you when making a future purchase. They were already interested in your brand for one reason or another, and Facebook retargeting will help make sure they remember it. 

4. Reach customers that haven’t engaged with your website

When you analyze your website’s traffic data, do you notice a high bounce rate? Are a lot of your website visitors finding your homepage or arriving on a product page then exiting without clicking on anything? Facebook retargeting could be the perfect way for you to gently remind those bouncing visitors that your store exists, and potentially convince them to give your site another shot. There’s a good chance that seeing those shoes they were momentarily ogling again while browsing Facebook would persuade them to inch a bit closer toward making a purchase. 

5. Increase trust in your brand

Facebook retargeting can legitimize your business and build trust among your potential customers. Even beyond the recognition of your brand, if they see an ad for your product on a social media website, they will be more likely to think of your brand as a legitimate, safe website to make purchases on. This element of Facebook remarketing that would be especially beneficial for a new business that is just getting established or a small business that doesn’t have a huge following on social media yet.

6. Increase social media engagement

There are a few different ways to go about remarketing, but one of the major benefits of using Facebook retargeting, in particular, is an increased social media following. One way to engage with potential customers through Facebook remarketing is to display relevant posts from your company’s social media account. You can show users a sponsored post that includes a graphic or video and a link back to your website. It’s also an opportunity to make customers aware of a limited-time offer you may be running. Customers will also have the opportunity to interact with the post by reacting to it or commenting on the thread below it. Users end up talking about your product and might even like your page, giving you an opportunity to keep them in the loop about your brand in the future.  

How Does Facebook Retargeting Work?

Facebook retargeting works using a pixel, or a tiny transparent image on your website that will collect data based on the people who view it. Using this data, you can find your website visitors on Facebook and send them customized, retargeted ads. Setting up a Facebook remarketing campaign is easier than you think. Even if you don’t understand how to code or how Facebook’s remarketing pixel works, you will still be able to use this type of advertising. 

How to Run a Facebook Remarketing Campaign

Now that you’re convinced that Facebook retargeting can help you gain more customers, and you know a little bit more about how the process actually works, let’s walk through the steps you would take toward implementing a Facebook retargeting campaign for your business. Luckily, the Facebook Ads Manager dashboard makes the process quick and easy, so you can get started on your Facebook remarketing campaign as soon as you finish reading the article. All you have to do is establish your audience, create a pixel, and start serving up customized ads that will start driving conversions right away. Here’s how to do it.

1. Go to

The first step in running a Facebook remarketing campaign is accessing the Facebook Ads Manager dashboard. First, you’ll need to make sure that you are logged into the appropriate Facebook page. Make sure you’re working with your business page rather than your personal one. Then, simply enter the URL into your browser to see the Ads Manager dashboard.

2. Open the Audiences Dashboard

On the dashboard, you should see an icon that looks like nine small dots on the left sidebar menu. Click on this icon to open the Business tools popup menu. From the Business tools menu, click on “Audiences” to open the appropriate page in Ads Manager.

open the audience dashboard

3. Create a Custom Audience

Next, you will want to create a custom audience for your remarketing ads. From the Audience dashboard, click on the button that says “Create a Custom Audience.” As the description on the dashboard states, this will allow you to connect with people who are already interested in your business. You can create a custom audience based on people who are already on your customer contact list, people who have engaged with your business’s app, or visitors to your website. For this example, we will use website visitors.

create a custom audience

After clicking on “Create A Custom Audience” a popup menu will ask you to “Choose a Custom Audience source.” Select “Website,” then click on the blue “Next” button in the bottom right corner of the popup menu.

choose a custom audience source

4. Create Your Pixel

If you haven’t yet, you’ll need to enter your website into Facebook Ads Manager before you can create a Facebook pixel. At this step, you can change the name of your pixel and enter the website you want to use it on. When you’re finished, click the blue “Continue” in the bottom right corner to create your Facebook pixel.

create your pixel

5. Customize Your Pixel

Congratulations, you’re now the proud owner of a Facebook pixel! It is now time to customize the pixel so that it can help you create the type of custom audience you are looking for. You may add up to five criteria for your pixel. First, decide whether you would like your pixel to create an audience based on either “any” or “all” of the criteria you enter. Do this by selecting “ANY” or “ALL” from the drop-down bar at the top of the popup window.

select any or all

You have the option to have your pixel create a custom audience based on all of your website visitors, or you can fine-tune it based on people who visited specific webpages under your domain or the duration of time that people spend on your page. 

customize by time spent

You can further adjust these criteria as well. Changing the “Retention” will adjust how long the people who fit the criteria will remain in the custom audience you are creating. You may choose to add multiple URLs to the same criteria, specify the number of visits people must have made to the URL, add separate criteria with different URLs, or add criteria that exclude people from your custom audience based on their activity on your website. You can also refine your criteria by device, meaning you can choose whether you want the people in your audience to be visiting your website in a browser, on iOS, or on Android. Click around and adjust the criteria until you have created the pixel you need to execute your Facebook retargeting campaign.

customize by multiple urls

6. Name and Create Your Custom Audience

You will need to give your custom audience a name before you can create it. There’s a field for you to enter an optional description for your audience. Once you’ve named and described your audience the way you’d like, click on the blue “Create Audience” button in the bottom right corner of the popup window to create your custom audience.

name and create your custom audience

7. Access Your Pixel and Add It to Your Website

To find your Pixel in the Facebook Ads Manager, click on the nine dots icon on the left sidebar to open the Business tools menu, then click on “Events Manager.” This will take you to the Data Sources dashboard. Click on “Continue Pixel Setup” to open a popup menu that offers two options for using your pixel. 

continue pixel setup

If you want to enter the Pixel code manually, click on the blue “Install Code Manually” button. Click “Copy code,” then follow the instructions to enter the base code into the header of your website. 

connect website activity

If you use Shopify or any another platform that’s integrated with Facebook ads, you don’t need to bother with copying and pasting the code. Click on the blue “Use a Partner” button and select the appropriate platform from the list of icons. Then, follow the steps to integrate your website with Facebook ads to start using your Facebook Pixel.

choose a partner

connect shopify account to facebook

8. Create Ads for Your Custom Audience

Now all that’s left to do is create the ads that you will use to retarget the people who meet the criteria you set. Your pixel will generate a custom audience based on that criteria, and you can apply targeted ads to those people. 


Facebook retargeting is a no-brainer for smart advertisers. Reaching audiences based on custom criteria will help you work smarter, not harder as a marketer. Facebook Ads Manager will provide you with the pixel, and you provide the ads that will reel potential customers back in, even if they forgot they ever visited your website.