You’ve probably heard of Google Tag Manager and may have used it a lot, but you have not seen the effect, right?
The article you are reading is Google Tag Manager – Introduction & User Guide, a tutorial on how to use Google Tag Manager. After this article, you will change your mind and Google Tag Manager will become your best friend. Trust me!
What Is Google Tag Manager?
Google Tag Manager is a tool designed to solve business problems between departments.
This example is easy to understand. In a company once, when the marketing department wants to install Facebook pixel on their website, they will have to suggest it to the IT department. Usually IT – after a long process – add a new pixel on the website. It’s too redundant!
Therefore, Google Tag Manager was born so that marketers can actively update their websites, and at the same time, less work for coders so that they focus on more important projects. Let’s look at the Google Tag Manager as a dashboard created for marketers so they can accomplish anything related to tracking their marketing results.
In 2012, Google announced their own tag manager and since then Google Tag Manager has grown steadily both in terms of a number of users and features.
Imagine that you can see every click on your website. With Google Tag Manager, you can easily do this and more. I will show you how to do it exactly.
You may ask me “Why Google Tag Manager? And does it replace Google Analytics?”
Good question but the answer is NO! These two tools work together. In fact, Google Tag Manager transforms Google Analytics by giving it better and more specific data. Once the data has been provided sufficiently, Google Analytics will give more useful parameters.
Why Should We Use Google Tag Manager?
Because Google Tag Manager brings us, as marketers, the ability to effectively monitor new marketing campaigns.
I’ve said before, Google Tag Manager simplifies placing pixels and tracking code on your site. Plus, you’ll be able to fully customize the data reported to Google Analytics, so you can better understand the effectiveness of your campaign.
Google Tag Manager allows you to use as many tags as you like, helping you understand the specific action visitors are taking on your website.
Google Tag Manager User Guide: Tags & Triggers
Let’s take a closer look at the various components of Google Tag Manager as well as how to use them to send data, like page views and clicks, to Google Analytics.
GTM has two main components:
- Tags: is used to inform GTM what you want to do, such as “you are sending a page view to Google Analytics.”
- Triggers: informs GTM when you want to tag, such as “whenever someone visits your webpage”
Before we know how these two parts work together, we first create the account. Creating accounts is easy. Just visit the Google Tag Manager page and sign in/sign up. Then you will be asked to set up the content.
Typically, you’ll create content for each webpage you want to track. Once you’ve created your account and your first content, GTM will give you a snippet of code that looks like this:
Just copy and paste this code immediately after the opening <body> tag on your site. If your site uses WordPress, there are some plugins like OptimizePress 2.0 that make this easier.
Then after creating the account, we start to create the first tag. For example, in this first tag, I want Google Tag Manager to report a pageview to Google Analytics whenever someone visits the website.
Here’s a specific set up.
Step 1: Create a new tag
Create a new tag by clicking on the Tags button in the left menu bar and then click on NEW.
After that, Google Tag Manager will want to know the type of product you want to tag so you choose Google Analytics.
Step 2: Select the Analytics item
Google Tag Manager will give you 2 choices: Universal Analytics or Classic Google Analytics. Usually, we choose Universal. Because it is a default and also the latest version of Google Analytics.
After selecting Continue, you need to provide to Google Tag Manager where the page view information is sent.
Step 3: Format your tag structure
In this case, you need to fill in your real ID.
Step 4: Determine triggers
After selecting Continue, we need to define the trigger. Remember that trigger is the way we tell GTM when it needs to fire this special tag.
In this case, we want to report page view when someone visits the site. So we select All Pages from the list of installed triggers.
Step 5: Set up and name your tag
After selecting All Pages, choose Create tag.
Google Tag Manager will ask you to name your new tag. For example,”GA – Pageview”.
Google Tag Manager will not post your changes immediately. Instead, just like when you create a WordPress post, you will need to Publish your changes.
*Note: Avoid duplicating your data.
If you use Google Tag Manager to control your Google Analytics, be sure to remove the existing Google Analytics tracking code from your pages. Otherwise, the old Google Analytics code will be crawled & the new Google Tag Manager tag will also report… thus generating duplicate data.
Other Features Of Google Tag Manager
You can also set up a tag that has the ability to automatically track visitors one at a time in the URL and send to Google Analytics with details: what pages they visited, when they click and which pages they click.
I will try tags, triggers and variables to perform this operation.
First, I would like to enable some built-in variables so Google Tag Manager can automatically collect the metrics we need. Click on Variables.
And select all the Pages & Utilities variables in Configure.
For example, make a tag that it can:
- Automatically track the number of clicks on the URL.
- Notice to Google Analytics as soon as a click.
- Send the URL of the page the users visited when they clicked the link.
- Send the URL of the link the users clicked.
This is how we do it.
Now you have a tag informing Google Tag Manager that it reports clickable data to Google Analytics and then displays the details of that click (including the page the users visited and the URL of the click).
Next, you tell Google Tag Manager when it will report these details to Google Analytics. At this point, you must use triggers. First, choose Click -> New.
Once you’ve saved the trigger for your new tag, publish the changes. You then access Google Analytics and view the new results through BEHAVIOR -> EVENTS.
This information of GTM is really worthwhile. Once you have created your first tag, you will easily feel how things are going.