Facebook Advertising Made Easy: A Simple Guide to Retargeting


Facebook Advertising Made Easy: 

A Simple Guide to Retargeting

By Jacob Marrero


Throughout the past few issues of the Shape Shift Report, I've shared a few different ways to use Facebook's Business tools, such as the Creative Hub and Facebook Advertising, to help promote your brand and sell your product. I want to show you a super simple and repeatable approach to retargeting. Whether you’re a small business or new to the Facebook Advertising game, you too can retarget! Before we get started I want to clarify a little vocab...


When I say retarget, I mean to show an ad to someone who has been on your website, purchased your product, is in your email list, or engaged with you on Facebook in any way. This ad however, lives specifically within Facebook. This is not the same as remarketing, which are web cookies based advertisements that follow you around the internet.


Retargeting and remarketing serve the same function, they are trying to re-engage a customer to either purchase or visit a website. However, retargeting inside of Facebook is much simpler, more cost-effective, and easier to manage. By choosing to retarget, you hold more control over who, how, where, and what people see. Plus, you don’t annoy the crap out of people by following them around everywhere.


Now that we are on the same page. Let’s get started.


To start retargeting you need two things:

  1. A website

  2. The Facebook Pixel


If you have these set up properly you can set up a retargeting campaign in Facebook!


For information on how to install the Facebook pixel click here. It’s really simple. Especially if you have a Shopify site.


Assuming that you have a website and the Facebook Pixel installed onto your site we can now create a retargeting ad!


First things first, we start with creating a new campaign in ads manager. If you already have a campaign that you would want this ad to live in, that is fine too. Just create a new ad set.


After creating a new campaign, you need to select an objective. For the sake of this article, we are going to go with the Traffic objective. These ads will be driving traffic somewhere off of Facebook (hopefully your website) at an efficient cost.

Make sure to label your campaigns appropriately. If you don’t, it can get really confusing really fast. For a great naming function I recommend reading this article.


This is where we set up our retargeting audience. Once the you have named your ad set and got to your audience. Click on “Create New” directly under the Custom Audience bar.

And select Custom Audience

Once you have clicked on Custom Audience it will take you to a list of four different areas that you can pull data from. Depending on your goal you might choose something different. For the sake of this simple retargeting guide, we are going to try and retarget people who have previously been on our website.

Selecting Customer File allows you to build an audience of any owned existing customer information such as emails, address, phone number, etc. You can also import your email list from MailChimp here. All of this data is hashed prior to upload so nobody’s personal information is ever compromised.


Selecting Website Traffic allows you to build an audience of web visitors.


Selecting App Activity allows you to build an audience of people who have engaged in your app.


And lastly, selecting Engagement on Facebook allows you to create an audience of people who have engaged with you on Facebook in four categories: with one of your videos, lead ads, canvas ads, or your Facebook page.


For the sake of this guide, we are going to go with Website Traffic. I believe this is the easiest and most profitable retargeting that you can do.


After selecting Website Traffic a window like this will pop up. You want to make sure that the dot next to your Pixel is green. That means you’re good to go. If it’s red, it means you have not fully set up your pixel.

The simplest retargeting audience you can build and a great place to start is the: All Web Visitors - 30 Days


This is an audience of people that have been on your website in the last 30 days. Hence, retargeting!


Facebook allows you to go back as far as 180 days and what is unique about this for Facebook is that these audiences are dynamic, so a person who hasn’t been to your website in 31 days will not see your ad. People are constantly falling in and out of this audience everyday as Facebook loads them.

Facebook has much more sophisticated ways of creating audiences of your website traffic. Which you can see above, but for the sake of this simple guide, we are going to stick with “Anyone who visits your website” in the past 30 days.


Once you have named your audience, press Create Audience, and voila you have your first retargeting audience done!

After you have created your Website Custom Audience that you will start retargeting to, you need to save that audience. Facebook will want you to specify demographic data and add audience interests, however, Facebook is finding people who have already been to your website in this audience, so they will likely already know about you. Don’t waste any time on additional interest with this group right now.

Once you save the audience it will ask you to name it. I suggest naming it the same thing as your Website Custom Audience. When you do this, you’re technically creating a second audience. That second audience however, is considered a Saved Audience. They include any additional demographics, interests, and connections that you want to add. Totally up to you, and we always suggest testing different options to see what works best for you and your business.


There you go. You have set up your first retargeting audience. Now the rest of the process is the same as building a regular ad.


Make sure to select a budget though that is appropriate to the size of your website custom audience. A lot of the time, the Website Custom Audiences are small and don’t require as much budget to reach all of those people. So make sure to keep an eye out for that.


The very last thing that you need to make sure happens when creating a retargeting ad is that the pixel is tracking all of your conversions. This option is on the last page of the ad creating form.

It’s very important to have that button clicked before you place your order. You can always go back and edit your ad to include pixel tracking if you did miss it. So don’t sweat it too much if you accidentally skipped over that.


The last thing I want to leave you with when setting up these retargeting campaigns is how to report on them. There are a lot of metrics in the Facebook reporting tools and it can be overwhelming. We like to look a 5 metrics to see if an ad is performing successfully.


  1. Actions (whatever your preferred action is)

  2. Cost Per Action

  3. Spend

  4. Frequency

  5. Website Purchase Conversion Value


You can create a custom report inside of Facebook to see all of these metrics together. If you want some more info on these metrics and why we use them you can read this article here.


To wrap it up, retargeting is creating custom audience that you want to get back in front of. These audience are usually a lot smaller, but extremely relevant. So don’t be scared when you see cost per click go up. What you need to monitor is the purchase conversion value. You want to see how much revenue you are making. It doesn’t matter what the cost is, if you’re making great revenue from these retargeting audiences.


If you ever need any inspiration, check out our step by step guide to the Creative Hub!

Thanks again for reading, as always please share!