How to simplify your life with Google Tag Manager

Google Tag Manager logo

We love telling our clients about handy systems that can make their life easier, as well as their businesses more efficient and successful.

That’s why we’re increasingly recommending they use Google Tag Manager (GTM), a really simple way to place ‘tags’ on your website.

Tags are tiny bits of website code which you can place on your website to measure specific actions that people take. This in turn can help you improve your digital marketing.

For example, for a local theatre, we recently placed a tag on the ‘book now’ button, so they could measure how many people were booking to see specific shows. They could then use their Google Analytics to see where those people had come from and which marketing campaigns had been most effective.

The problem is that it can be difficult to get tags onto a website, and difficult to take them off again. It can be especially problematical if different marketing agencies have access to a website and clutter it up with different tags that can potentially interfere with each other.

Google Tag Manager is a free tool that makes it easy to add and update website tags. Here’s Paul’s useful summary of the benefits, which he sent to a client last week:

  • New tags can quickly be put on the site without having to wait for an over-worked IT department.
  • It’s easy to check that tags are working correctly, allowing marketers and managers to take responsibility for tagging.
  • Reduced risk of installing tags incorrectly, leading to incorrect data or slowing down of the site.
  • Old tags can be easily removed, reducing ‘code bloat’ (i.e. having old code on the site that’s not doing anything and slows everything down).

How to Install

It’s fairly straightforward – even more reason to give it a try:

  1. Set up or log in into a Google account and go to Tagmanager.google.com to get started. Enter your account name (this can be your company name) and the ‘container’ name (usually your website). Make sure you select ‘Web’ as the container type.
  2. Replace Google Analytics tags with Google Tag Manager tags.
  3. The Google Tag Manager code needs to be inserted immediately after the opening <body> tag. This may require the help of the IT department or a web developer.
  4. Any existing tags can then be re-created inside of Google Tag Manager (for example Google Analytics). Additional tags can also be added as required.

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