Using Google Tag Manager to Improve Digital Marketing Campaigns

By Raubi Perilli |

  | Feb 28, 2019  /  Solutions |

A website for your business can effectively attract, educate, and convert customers. But, it can also do so much more than that.

With Google Tag Manager (an element of Google Analytics), you can turn your website into an analytical machine that collects data to help you get to know your customers, better understand the ROI of your marketing campaigns, and identify ways to change your site to improve both user experience and conversion rates.

Find out why Google Tag Manager is one of the best digital marketing tools you probably aren't using yet.

What Is Google Tag Manager?

Google Tag Manager was launched in October 2012 to help website owners better manage their website tags, also called tracking pixels.

A tag or pixel is a snippet of code that records a piece of data or information on the website. Tags can track:

  • Where traffic sources come from
  • How visitors behave on your website
  • Which actions people take to convert.

Tags provide valuable insight about the performance of your website and satisfaction of site visitors.  

Without a tag manager, site developers have to manually add lines of code to a website. This might not take long if you just need one tag, but some brands have a dozen or more pixels that fire when a site loads. If a developer isn’t careful, the tags can slow a site down, causing people to bounce, or even cause it to crash.  

Furthermore, while tag implementation might seem simple, not everyone has a programming background.

Google Tag Manager was created to solve these problems.

With GTM, you don’t need coding expertise add tags to your website. Plus, developers only need to add one line of code or one WordPress plugin (the GTM code or plugin) instead of new code for every tag. GTM gathers the information you need and filters it based on the varied tags you have set up through it.

How to Add Tags in Google Tag Manager

Now that you know what a tag is, you can start to take steps to add one to your website. Most digital marketing tools and plugins have guides for brands who need helping setting up their tags and most of the work is copying and pasting.  

Start by choosing the tag type. For the most part, this will be a conversion-based tag. You can search for the tag type or name in the Tag Configuration box.

From there, you can use advanced settings to determine the tag’s priority. You can choose options like setting it to fire once per page or once per event. You can also set the tag to fire before others or after higher-priority tags load.

Once you have your tag configured, you can add trigger settings. These include limits like the pages your tag fires on, forms that are completed, and purchases that are made. You can set as many limits as you want, but you also need to collect enough data to make valuable decisions based off the information.

With your tag configurations and triggers, you will add information about the tag, including the code snippet, name, and other identifiers. These will be provided by the software tool or plugin you want to add. Once you finish this, you have added a tag!    

GTM is popular with programmers and non-programmers alike because it is easy to use. When you are done using a tag, you can pause it or remove it easily from the website through the interface. You don’t have to worry about removing a line of code that breaks the website or only partly removing a tag. GTM is meant to be user-friendly even if you don’t know code.  

How Can Google Tag Manager Help? A Sample Case Study

Google Tag Manager allows you to curate data that Google Analytics otherwise wouldn’t track. While GA certainly has a lot of information, it isn’t the end-all source for data management and analytics.  

For example, a website manager might wonder why their traffic to the blog is so low.

They look at Google Analytics and might notice that the blog’s time on site is high and the number of pages viewed is high, which shows that people find value in the blog once they get to it. The site manager can also use Google Analytics to see that the majority of site visitors come to the blog directly, rather than from other parts of the website.  

This information gives the website manager a clue. From there, they install Crazy Egg, Mouseflow, or another heatmap tool to see how their customers experience the website. The site manager adds the snippet of code for these tools to the site through Google Tag Manager and runs the tool for a few weeks. Each time the tag fires it catches information on user behavior.  

With the heatmap information, the site manager is able to see that most users don’t scroll past the fold and don’t see the blog advertises. To solve this, the site manager adds an A/B testing tool through GTM and runs a test where the blog is more prominent. By the end of the month, he sees blog traffic increases significantly when it is placed higher up on the site page.  

Google Analytics can provide clues as to what is wrong with your site or how customers respond, but many companies can benefit from using other tools and collecting different consumer data points to paint a complete picture of the user experience. Instead of adding three or four snippets of code just to solve one problem, the site manager can add four tools into GTM and run or pause them as he sees fit.

Get Help with Setting Up (and Leveraging Data From) Google Tag Manager

If all of this setup sounds a little too confusing for you, you don't have to dive into Google Tag Manager to get its benefits and insights.

We're here to help.

The team at MyArea Network ​are experts at setting up tags and using them to collect valuable insights about your digital marketing campaigns. We can set up tags to collect data, analyze the information, and then create plans of action to improve your campaigns based off what we learn.  

We love to help brands make smart, data-driven marketing decisions, and Google Tag Manager is just one of the tools we use to make informed, strategic marketing plans for our clients.

We'd love to help you use data to improve your business and marketing efforts. Contact us today for a free consultation to see how we can start using data to create richer, more targeted marketing campaigns for your business.