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Bidding and Optimization

Home > English > Bidding and Optimization > Bidding Basics > Bidding on Google Remarketing Campaigns

Bidding on Google Remarketing Campaigns


Google’s Remarketing feature is a way for advertisers to target visitors who have already visited a client’s website, but left for one reason or another.

AdWords allows users to create Audience templates to target specific users (e.g. ‘users who browsed sports products’). These templates are essentially snippets of code that are placed on desired sections of the website. It’s then possible for users to create campaigns to target visitors who have been to those parts of the website (or not). One simple example of how to use remarketing would be to create two lists, a landing page list and a confirmation page list, and then creating a remarketing campaign to target all users who visited the landing page but not the confirmation page.

How To Bid On Remarketing Campaigns

The Platform’s bidding solution does not officially support remarketing campaigns, however there are workarounds available which will enable you to bid on this type of campaign.

The Platform is capable of managing bids for all Google Display Network groups, however it cannot manage bids for Remarketing Targets if there is more than one target per group. In this case, you can use the following steps to bid on these targets:

  1. Create or clone a new group for each of your remarketing targets.

  2. Ensure that there is only one audience target per group and set the bid adjustment to 0%.

  3. Optimize your bids at the group level.

In this way, you will technically be optimizing your bids for remarketing targets. You must ensure that you have no bids set at the audience level (see the next section for more details).

Important Notes

  • Google will use the group-level bid for audience targets until you set a bid at the audience-target level. After an audience-target bid is set, you must edit the bid in AdWords and leave the field blank in order to begin using the group-level bid again.

  • You cannot explicitly target an ad to only show for a specific audience, however if you use the workaround above, you can simply bid higher on that specific group.

  • At the present time in AdWords, audience-level bids do not function with Search, only with Display.

How To Bid On RLSAs (Remarketing Lists for Search Ads)

The Platform has a feature which allows you to take advantage of Google's remarketing (or retargeting) functionality for Search campaigns.

Marin recommends using the Target and Bid setting to optimize keyword-level bids based on only impressions and clicks from matches to your remarketing lists. Because Target and Bid causes Google to only show the ads when both the keyword and the remarketing list match, you will set the Remarketing Bid Adjustment to 0%, and Marin Bidding will optimize bids to the matched impression and click data.


  1. If you are using existing campaigns but adding RLSA support, Marin recommends copying the source campaigns, adding _RLSA to the the campaign name, and setting the Remarketing  Bid Adjustment to 0%.

  2. When using the platform to assign remarketinglists to Google groups, note that if the group does not have a Target setting, it will automatically be set to Target & Bid. This is mostly applicable when you are assigning a list to a group that has never had remarketing lists associated to it. This is important to know, as it can cause a drop in traffic.

  3. To increase efficiency, add the remarketing lists used in your RLSA campaigns as negatives to the source campaigns.  This will  to drive all remarketed impressions to the RLSA campaigns, increasing the accuracy of keyword bids.

  4. If the RLSA campaigns or groups using Target and Bid drive more than 40 conversions per month and your business goals for remarketing differ from other campaigns you can consider mapping those campaigns or groups to a separate Marin Bidding folder.

Important notes about remarketing lists

When using the Platform to assign remarketing lists to Google groups, note that if the group does not have a Target setting, it will automatically be set to Target & Bid. This is mostly applicable when you are assigning a list to a group that has never had remarketing lists associated to it. This is important to know, as it can cause a drop in traffic.

  • Note that the creation of remarketing lists is carried out on the publisher's end and synced to the application. You cannot create the lists within the Platform at this time.
  • You can sync down remarketing lists and view them in the grid.

  • Lists can be bulk uploaded via FTP using the prefix groupRetargetList_

  • Negative remarketing lists can be managed in bulk only. They are visible in the Negatives grid.

  • Cost metrics are not available for remarketing lists.

  • Single/multi-edit is not available for remarketing lists at this time.

  • Nightly sync will not update your remarketing lists. To do so, you'll need to perform a hard sync.

  • You need to wait overnight before you can bulk add/edit remarketing list assignments in the Platform for a newly created list. If you don't do this, the process will fail because the Platform will not be able to recognize this new list.

  • The Platform does not support bulk add/edit assignments for lists that share the same name (for example, if you have shared lists in your Google account such as All Visitors). You will need to do this within AdWords.


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