consumer_intent_is_powerfulConsumer intent may be the most powerful data that any business has access to when it comes to improving sales and establishing popularity in their industry. Consumer intent shows up when an online user conducts a search using a keyword or phrase that indicates an item or service they're interested in. For example, if someone searches for "black leather boots", you can probably assume that they're thinking about buying a pair in the near future.

A study recently conducted by "Think with Google" found that brands who are relying on demographics alone to reach out to their audience could be missing out on a huge number of potential customers - up to 70% of mobile shoppers. The reason for this is that understanding why someone's searching for something, and what resources they're using to find that thing can help you to maximize your search retargeting campaign, by ensuring you present banners and advertisements to people that show the exact product they need.

How Does Consumer Intent Work?

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In the recent years, mobile shopping has changed the face of the typical consumer journey. As more people use their smartphones and tablets to search for products than ever before, the way we decide on which products to buy has been split into dozens of crucial decision-making moments. Not only can we research a product whenever we want, but we can even look for inspiration when seeking solutions to common problems. By tracking consumer intent, companies get an insight into exactly what your buyer is looking for, and what stage of the purchasing process they're in. In other words, you can make sure that you show up in their search feed exactly when they want you most.

Timing Is Everything

In order to make a sale, you don't need to just be seen by your prospective audience, you need to present the right advertisement at the right time. Although simply making your mark in search and display ads can be enough to increase your chances of meeting your consumer's needs, utilizing a retargeting strategy that makes use of your audience's previous searches ensures you're offering relevant marketing at the right time.

Somewhere in the region of 90% of mobile customers haven't decided which brand they're going to buy from when they begin looking for product information online. That leaves you with plenty of room between the initial search and the actual purchase to make your own sales pitch.

Combining Intent and Search Retargeting

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Search retargeting is a popular and effective targeting technique that has been attracting a great deal of buzz over the recent years. Using search retargeting has allowed leading brands from around the world to deploy successful display campaigns based on search behavior. For example, imagine you're trying to draw your consumer base towards your new product for internet security. Adjusting your campaign so that banners show up when a user searches for "virus protection", "internet security", and other common phrases increases your chances of appealing to the right audience at the right time.

Not only does this process ensure that you stay on the good side of your prospective buyers by lowering your chances of annoying them with irrelevant ads during their online experience, but it also helps to optimize your budget spend. Rather than spending all of your cash advertising towards people who may or may not be interested in the products or services you're selling, retargeting with consumer intent helps you to direct your financial investments towards the customers that are most likely to actually buy from you.

An Amazing Marketing Method

Remember, once you've convinced your audience to convert into customers with your targeted advertisements, ensure that the rest of their buying experience is as smooth as possible. The last thing you want is for your retargeting methods to be successful, only for your customers to be frustrated by a slow-loading page or a host of irritating forms that they need to fill out before purchase.

Keep the procedure for buying as simple as possible, and offer clients plenty of different options for payment, from PayPal to debit or credit cards. While user intent and search retargeting will help draw consumers to your website at the right time, only you can ensure that they want to stick with you throughout the buying process.

Topics: Data Analytics, retargeting, Search Retargeting, Consumer Intent

Tim Nichols

Written by Tim Nichols

Tim Nichols is a founding partner at ExactDrive, a digital media buying agency with white label, reseller and managed service options available. ExactDrive plans, manages, and optimizes online advertising campaigns with the objective of delivering measurable value and empowering clients to find precisely targeted audiences. ExactDrive has offices in Minneapolis, MN and Milwaukee, WI.

Tim Nichols is also a contributing author on Forbes.com.