Criteo Review 2023: Using AI to Drive Ads & Retargeting Campaigns

Criteo Review 2023: Using AI to Drive Ads & Retargeting Campaigns
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Criteo Review: In-Depth

Criteo In-Depth

Criteo is an online platform that focuses on digital advertising and retargeting. The French enterprise works with dozens of industries around the world. Although it had humble beginnings, the business has grown to a high level, similar to Google. Through computer technology and Internet algorithms, the software finds the best ways to market products and services. 

These retargeting strategies help individuals and teams of various backgrounds. This Criteo review takes a closer look at how this successful system continues to rival top-tier ad engines.

Criteo Key Features

This brand management system has all the primary elements that businesses want. With this toolkit, they can reach the right audiences and sell more products. Along with lead generation software, Criteo offers personalized marketing and reviews key metrics.

Background Information

This online publicity business is a public firm with 2,800 employees. Jean-Baptiste Rudelle, Franck Le Ouay, and Romain Niccoli founded it in 2005 in France. The headquarters are in Paris. A Silicon Valley office opened in 2010 as the brand sought more American clients. Today, there are 29 global offices. The corporation is one of the biggest European predictive advertising R&D centers.

Service Features & Technical Details

Criteo Service Features & Technical Details

Below is a brief review of Critero’s products and solutions. It’s easy to see that its advantageous offerings can extend to any worldwide brand or niche.

Campaign Management Software

With the campaign building tools, businesses can organize every aspect of the project. They start by selecting their primary objective as well as determining goals and how they’ll track their progress. The campaigns help to boost traffic, drive sales, and engage more promising leads.

Retargeting Software

Criteo Retargeting Software
The system uses its artificial intelligence technology to save clients tons of time and energy. Without the extra hours of research, they can know which markets to go into. This customized attention helps them reach the right consumers the first time.

Social Media Marketing Tools

Through social media monitoring, the software offers even more insights into untapped markets. Customers can use the mobile app functionality to reach their brightest prospects. Smart bidding and integrations make the project as effortless as possible.

Features in Detail

These reviews take a closer look at how Criteo’s solutions and products work for clients. Check out these aspects of the software and how they can make any business more competitive.

Lead Generation & Retargeting

Criteo Lead Generation & Retargeting

This feature re-engages consumers through video reviews and banner displays. Clients can team up with high-profile publishers to reach more interested prospects. Plus, the dashboard includes in-depth reporting tools for easier analysis. The platform also uses artificial intelligence and algorithms to suggest relevant ads. These dynamic advertisements also work on previous website visitors. This strategy helps to bring back repeat customers.

Facebook & Instagram Retargeting

The software helps brands create stunning social media content. By using dynamic Facebook and Instagram ads, it provides more insights into shoppers’ journeys. This invaluable info makes it easier to craft the ideal marketing campaign. The Criteo Engine looks through a database of consumers to predict their unique path to buying a product. That information informs the action plan for driving more sales.

All-in-One Mobile Marketing

Criteo Service Features & Technical Details

Criteo All-in-One Mobile Marketing

The service has a comprehensive platform for app installs, retargeting, and consumer engagement. The algorithm determines who actively engages with the app and how to boost revenue accordingly. The system looks through these insights across all verticals, too. Other metrics include ROI, ad spending, and downloads. 

Customer Targeting Rates

Criteo Customer Targeting Rates

The Audience Match tool is perfect for finding high-quality consumers. The system uses AI technology to help brands effectively rework their targeted promotions. This function works across Web and mobile browsers, as well as apps. 

Drive Customer Conversions

Criteo Drive Customer Conversions

Again, the system uses intelligent machine learning to find new customers and reconnect with old ones. Teams can analyze audiences based on several metrics. These include shopping patterns, interests, location, and more. Now there is no more wasting time reaching out to uninterested buyers. Once they have an ideal market, they can customize their campaigns and product recommendations.

Premium Retailer Campaigns

Criteo Premium Retailer Campaigns

This feature is a self-service portal for creating beautiful, scalable retail campaigns. Competitive metrics allow businesses to compare themselves to others in the e-commerce space. The interface is intuitive and streamlined, making it simple to customize SKUs and product ads. Teams can personalize the content to drive more traffic to their site or app.

Media for Brand Relationships & Revenue

Criteo Media for Brand Relationships & Revenue

Criteo also offers e-commerce media for businesses in the retail space. With these tools, agencies can better manage vendors and affiliates and various ad formats. All of it is accessible through an integrated and responsive platform. Administrators have total control over the dashboards and inventory accessibility. 

Online & Offline Store Management

Criteo Online & Offline Store Management

The platform invites entrepreneurs to merge their online and physical databases. It creates a more streamlined and organized approach. This way, all team members better understand the buyers’ purchasing behavior and journey. As a result, they can deliver more personalized advertising content. In short, this feature helps brands find their in-person clients on social media and other online channels.

Drive Website Traffic

It’s not just about boosting site traffic but bringing the right people to the online store. Criteo helps clients use machine learning and quality information. These tools make it easier to customize targeting campaigns and digital ads. Not only that, but users will know when to run those advertisements for maximum engagement. The self-service platform grants complete control to customers, so they create the content they want.

Eliminate Third-Party Fees

The Direct Bidder app grants publishers more access and control over their inventory. At the same time, it gets rid of third-party fees. The platform has a base of nearly 20,000 retail brands, connecting advertisers with top corporations. This feature applies to native ads, videos, and standard displays. Customers retain the full value of every purchased impression, too.

Video Tutorials

The site’s resource center is full of webinars and written guides for users. Here, they can access industry reports, crucial data, and much more. These online seminars and tutorials focus on current events, helping entrepreneurs of all levels. A few examples include marketing tips for each quarter, maintaining brand loyalty, and mobile outreach. 

Various insights across all industries can educate start-ups and newer agencies. They can learn from successful brands in their niche and better identify their pain points.

Integrated Apps

Criteo provides integrations with main ad networks to help drive more results. These include data transfers and DSP syncing. Connecting DSP with ad exchanges allows users to access more metrics and optimize their campaign content.

Plans & Pricing

The business operates through a cost-per-click system. The average CPC is $1.65. Even though this is a public firm, its rates are higher than many competitors. It can get away with this pricing model because of its investors and stakeholders. 

The company has a network of tens of thousands of high-profile brands. A few examples include Adobe, Lytics, Oracle, and Shopify Plus. 

The CPC that the corporation charges marketers includes a retargeting fee, usually 35%. This figure varies, but 35% is a good median rate. So, if a company is spending $10,000, the fee would be around $3,500.


Like many other similar platforms, Criteo runs on a CPC model. This cost-per-click system works effectively for many brands. How it works is an advertiser sets their preferred CPC. The company requires a minimum amount of $1. 


  • An account manager is available
  • Easy-to-read dashboards
  • Lots of testing tools
  • Powerful algorithm
  • The company unveils new features regularly


  • The rates are a bit high for smaller agencies
  • Their video format could be better

Retargeting Fee

The enterprise charges this fee, which it includes in the CPC. It is part of the reason why the cost-per-click is significantly higher. Yet, lots of businesses find that the remarketing tools are well worth the price. 

Plus, the AI Engine is a must-have for retail clients. This feature helps them build relevant ad content on an optimized timetable. The result is a digital ad with the perfect placement and time that brings more traffic.


  • Access to a dedicated support manager
  • Ad deployment tools
  • Reach consumers across social media and Web
  • Segmentation features
  • Suitable for B2B and B2C clients


  • Produces similar results to Google Ads
  • The rates are quite high

Pricing & Key Features Chart

Since the company works with one primary pricing model, there isn’t too much to compare. Rather, this table provides a quick review of what to expect when advertising on the platform.

CPC Retargeting Fee
Average Price $1.35 ~35%
Number of Users 1 1
Number of Profiles 1 1
Scheduling Yes Yes
Account Manager Yes Yes
DSP Integration Yes Yes
Omnichannel Yes Yes
Segmentation Yes Yes

Terms & Conditions

Individuals can access the Terms and Conditions in several languages. These include English, German, French, Korean, Portuguese, Dutch, Spanish, Russian, Italian, Spanish, Chinese, and Turkish. Besides the service agreement, clients should look over all the legal documents. There are separate statements for advertising guidelines, brand safety, and sponsored products. By using the service, customers acknowledge that the company displays banners on the Criteo Network at its discretion. This also pertains to where and how often the banners show up. Moreover, different clients may be given priority.

Privacy Policy

The team last updated its privacy policy in July 2019. When visitors browse Criteo’s and its publishers’ websites and apps, they consent to the use of data collection technology. These services gather details related to search activity and purchases. Navigation info links to a unique identifier or cookie and informs the site’s operations. The business processes segment details from trusted third parties to provide more tailored ads. The privacy policy lists user rights and how individuals can contact the company with any disputes.

Refund Policy

The minimum investment is $1 unless otherwise noted in the Insertion Order. Criteo reserves the right to request pre-payment from clients at its sole discretion. The company will charge for services based on the information in the Insertion Order. Customers will receive monthly invoices regardless of the number of ad campaigns. There are no budget cap guarantees, and payments are due within 30 days of the invoice date. For overdue charges, the enterprise may add interest and recovery fees. It provides all products and solutions on an “as-is” basis and doesn’t offer refunds.

Customer Support

Criteo Customer Support

Here is a quick review of the company’s support channels. Even though the headquarters is in Paris, France, there are regional offices around the globe. Check out how to get in touch with the team below.


The enterprise does not list a phone number on its website. The Contact page does have links to its social media profiles.  Yet, it hasn’t updated its LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter accounts since April 2023.


The company has an online submission form on its Contact page. Here, visitors can request more information and get in touch with a brand representative. They must include their name, business email, job role, and company type.

Online Chat

When individuals visit the Criteo homepage, they will notice a speech icon in the lower-right corner. If they click this, they will reveal a chatbox. There, they can type in their contact details to get connected to a sales agent.

Support Center

The enterprise’s support center is full of useful resources. For example, visitors can browse through blog posts, articles, tutorials, and video guides. Topics include data-driven marketing, retail strategies, product catalogs, and more. At the top of the page, clients can use the search bar to find specific answers to their inquiries.  There is also a Management Center containing additional info on API and statistics. 

Quality of Service

Criteo has 2.3 out of 5 stars on Trustpilot. The score is based on six reviews, so it’s not the most reliable. This corporation is not accredited or listed with the Better Business Bureau. On TrustRadius, it has a rating of 8 out of 10, based on 98 reviewers. Most of the previous users say that the products are easy to use and drive good results. They also appreciate the access to an account strategist. On the other hand, many customers complain about some gaps in reporting and a lack of creative tools.

Pros & Cons

Criteo’s primary clientele is e-commerce marketers, so there is no lack of campaign features. The conversion rates consistently outperform competitors, too. This platform’s retargeting tools are simple to use and can start generating site traffic in no time. There is also ample customer support in terms of bidding assistance and strategy implementation. However, it is hard for creative agencies to implement, especially in terms of product catalogs.



  • Brands receive lots of support
  • Campaigns are always results-oriented
  • Conversion rates are always great
  • Dynamic retargeting efforts & omnichannel presence
  • Intelligent machine learning
  • Professional data pool
  • Reliable post-click attribution
  • Fewer customization tools for creatives
  • The pricing is higher than average
  • There are a few gaps in the reporting analytics

Criteo Alternatives

There are some alternatives to Criteo for those who want to explore their options. Check out a brief review of each provider below.

1. Taboola: Reach New Heights With Ads

Taboola Alternatives

Taboola is particularly good for creative agencies. They can take advantage of various content types across the Web and social media. The platform also offers split testing and keyword tracking. Like Criteo, it helps with bid management and campaign building.

2. AdRoll: Make Good Use of Ad Dollars

AdRoll Alternatives

This provider offers a free version or a paid package starting at $12 per month. AdRoll walks customers through the campaign and bidding process, too. Its recommendations are quite approachable. For instance, 10,000 to 25,000 visitors would cost around $75 per day.

3. The Trade Desk: Media With More Meaning

The Trade Desk Alternatives

The Trade Desk focuses on TV, audio, and mobile publicity, as well as native ads. It also helps with product inventory and provides metric-rich reporting. Customers can use the info management platform for AI optimization and real-time bidding. They’ll enjoy omnichannel targeting and enterprise APIs, too.

4. Rubicon Project: Better Negotiations & Results

Rubicon Project Alternatives

This digital advertising company connects marketers with premium buyers. It has a programmatic marketplace that works with dynamic campaigns and header bidding. Customers can use video and mobile content to reach more leads and buyers, no matter their industry.

5. Perfect Audience: No Set-Up Fees, Minimum CPC

Perfect Audience Alternatives

Perfect Audience has all the tools for mobile, Web, and Facebook retargeting. It also offers integrations with Shopify and Twitter, among other third-party apps. Best of all, it doesn’t require a minimum ad spend or set-up fee. Campaigns auto-optimize to drive more leads, traffic, and revenue.

6. Appnexus (Xandr): Leave an Advertising Legacy

Xandr Alternatives

Xandr works with many of the top media brands out there. Its platform deals with buying and selling and uses technology and premium inventory. The Xandr staff are experts in TV, video, and digital content. All of its features are driven by rich consumer engagement data.

Criteo & Alternatives Comparison Chart

This table shows the basic elements of each provider. Keep in mind that this is a general review that reflects the minimum pricing models.

Criteo Taboola AdRoll TTD RP PA Xandr
Minimum CPC $1.00 $0.01 $0.01 $0.01 $0.01 $0.01 $0.01
Additional Fees 35% for retargeting N/A $12/mo


N/A Transaction fees (depends on campaign) N/A N/A
# of Users 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
# of Accounts 1 1 1 1 1 1 1


Mobile, Video Mobile, Video Mobile, Video Audio, Mobile, Video Mobile, Video Mobile, Video Mobile, TV
Campaign Builder Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Free Trial Yes No Yes No No No No
Native Ads Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Retargeting Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Social Listening Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Support Email, chat, help center Email, help center Email, help center Email, phone, help center Email Email, help center Email

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How Does Criteo Make Money?

    Criteo makes money by charging marketers for advertisements. The essence of the pricing model is that the business charges for each click an ad generates. Here is a brief step-by-step review of the process:

    • Sellers join the platform and determine their cost-per-click or CPC. The minimum is $1, although most customers bid more.
    • With their chosen CPC, they pay that amount when their ads receive a click.
    • Criteo also takes a percentage of the cut to cover processing costs. This rate could be anywhere from 10% to 50%.

  • What is Criteo’s Business Model?

    Again, the enterprise works on a cost-per-click pricing model. It uses cost-per-sale optimization to generate business earnings. Criteo has access to thousands of publishers in over 50 countries. These partnerships allow it to make billions of dollars in post-click sales each year. Rather than having a subscription, it charges based on CPC, taking a cut of it from advertisers.

  • Is Criteo Safe?

    Yes. The corporation protects customer information and secures all details in encrypted databases. Its technology personalizes the digital ads that consumers see while surfing the Web. To do this, it needs to collect data about browsing habits, buying behavior, and mobile usage. These tactics are similar to what sites like Google and Facebook do.

  • Is Criteo a DSP?

    Yes, it is a DSP (demand-side platform). This type of promotional system involves real-time bidding. So, Criteo serves as a middleman between advertisers and publishers. It also means that sellers don’t have control over the full conversation.

  • Is Criteo Programmatic?

    In a way, yes, Criteo is programmatic. It uses data processing technology to generate intelligent recommendations. For instance, it looks at identity and interest research to analyze a shopper’s online activity and purchasing intent. It also maps campaign sales across different e-commerce platforms. This helps in finding the most relevant buyer experiences. Publisher interaction data looks at consumer engagement with ads across millions of channels.


This enterprise’s digital advertising and retargeting efforts don’t go unnoticed. Operating in dozens of markets and countries, it is one of the most competitive platforms of its kind. Through AI and machine learning, it spots the most profitable channels and outreach methods, saving time and effort.

As a result, brands can capture more leads and learn their target audience’s behaviors faster. To be fair, the pricing isn’t the cheapest, and this company isn’t the best for creatives. Still, its omnichannel presence and smart algorithms are impressive.

If you have experience with this marketing service, leave your Criteo review below.

Matt Robinson

Matt Robinson

Matt is an experienced technical writer and translator skilled in writing targeted texts for a variety of audiences. He has a diversified background, including social media management of various products. He is a data-driven strategist and a passionate story-teller. He posts about all social innovations and delivers high-quality research and content to our readers.