Saturday, April 1, 2023

What is Google Tag Manager, What is It for and How Does It Work?


Still, you not know Google Tag Manager and comfort it offered you to connect all your web analytics tools from one place? A problem that we usually suffer in digital businesses is the need to handle multiple tool code labels such as Analytics, Google Ads, or even those of Facebook Ads or LinkedIn.

When we want to connect something to our website, we usually depend on a programmer or someone with knowledge of these topics. But, as you know, this can generate certain delays, since it depends on a third party. Luckily, Google Tag Manager is capable of solving this problem and facilitating both your work and that of your team.

Surely by now, you will have heard about this platform, since it has been available to the public for a few years, but since there are still people who do not know what it is or what it is for, in this article, I will teach you everything you need to know about this powerful Google tool and how it is able to make your life easier:

What is Google Tag Manager?

Google Tag Manager (GTM) is a tool owned by the search engine and that replaces the need to manage tracking tags, which we usually include on our websites or applications, one by one, being possible to manage multiple tags through GTM and have it all on the same dashboard.

Basically, it is like adding a kind of “master key” to your web page or application with which to integrate any other tracking tool that requires a javascript code, and this is not just to include Google tags like Analytics or AdWords. , also applies to third-party code snippets, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Mediaplex, or metricool, for example.

How was Google Tag Manager born?

It first appeared in October 2012, and since then it has become a powerful tool to simplify the work of Marketing professionals when managing tracking tags.

Although there are multiple tools that allow you to do this, Tag Manager is indisputably the most widely used of all.

Curiously, despite being the most used tag manager, there is still a large percentage of webmasters and Marketing professionals who do not know about this type of system capable of reducing the dependence of the Marketing department on IT.

But what exactly is a tag in GTM?

In this particular case, the tags are basically snippets of JavaScript code that are inserted into the HTML code of the page. I think it is very useful to stop at this point to define it for you since I will be talking about them throughout the content.

These code snippets, which are also often called pixels, are responsible for gathering specific information and sending it to a third party, so that they can organize it and show it to us, through what we usually know as SEO Marketing and Positioning metrics.

The clearest example is Google Analytics, whose label we insert in the HTML code of our website so that it collects information regarding the web traffic we receive, then this information is sent to Google Analytics and it gives us a detailed report on the information collected.

There are tags of all kinds, to track visits, conversions, views, impressions, actions, and much more.

Depending on the tag you use, you can get one information or another.

What is Google Tag Manager for?

What can it be used for? Very easy: mainly for one thing, and that is to simplify the management of the code fragments or labels that we use to integrate tracking systems on our website or application.

Generally, each one that we need to integrate labels, code fragments, or pixels, we must do it individually, different code for each one. This not only requires time, which increases depending on the number of labels we need, but it also requires a minimum of knowledge about markup language, something that not everyone has.

This is where the Google Tag Manager system comes in, a practical solver for the problem and which comes to work as a “global” manager, which allows you to replace all the tags with a single one, that of GTM.

After implementing it, it is very simple to manage each of the labels you need through this Google system.

The best thing is that this is not the only thing they are used for, since they not only help to manage the use of labels but also to keep them updated and check that there are no errors before or after implementing them, even if at some point the tag stops working, with Tag Manager you can simply remove it. A true wonder.

How to create an account in Google Tag Manager step by step?

One of the biggest advantages it has is how easy it is to implement and use it, there are more advantages and utilities, but I’ll tell you about them later.

First I’ll show you how you can implement it on your website to start managing tracking tags in a more optimal and comfortable way.

Enter Tag Manager

The first thing you need to do to start enjoying this label management system is to enter the main page, you can do it directly through this link.

Create an account

Once you’re there, if you don’t have a previously created account, you should do it now.

Go to the top right of the screen, right where it says “Create Account”.

This option will take you to a new section where you will have to enter some information, basically the account name and the country of origin, right there you must also create the container for your code.

Create your unique code container

The next step will be to create or configure your code container, which is quite simple, and this container is the one that you are going to introduce on your site to manage the labels.

What is Google Tag Manager, What is It for and How Does It Work?

Therefore, you just have to put the address of your website and select the platform to which the container is directed, be it a website, an application, or even AMP (Accelerated Mobile Page).

Install the container on your website

Once you have created the container, GTM will give you two codes or labels.

As with Analytics and other similar services, you will need to insert these tags on your website, you only need to insert these codes on your website.

The first of them you have to insert after the ” head ” tag, while the second one is inserted just after the ” body ” tag.

If you are installing it in WordPress, to insert these codes you must go to ” Appearance ” and then to the ” Editor ” section.

In most WordPress templates you have to look for the header file, which is usually named “header.php”; You usually find both tags in this file, both “head” and “body” and that is where you must insert your container.

If your theme does not comply with this, you must search each one separately.

Check that everything is in order

There is a way to check that the container is working and that you have installed it correctly:

To do this, go back to GTM and in the panel of your container, in the upper right, you will find a button that says ” Preview “, when you click there, you will activate the preview mode.

With this mode active, enter your web page with your administrator session active and if you did everything correctly, a panel should appear at the bottom of the screen.

What is Google Tag Manager, What is It for and How Does It Work?

This panel also helps you visualize which tags are currently active on your website.

Now, you can start adding and managing your labels.

Keep in mind that GTM has a wide variety of predefined labels that you can implement very quickly just by clicking on them.

If you don’t see a tracking tag in the list, don’t panic, you can manually insert it into it.

Activate the labels you want

Finally, you should know that, by clicking the ” Add new tag ” option, you can include all the information related to any of the products owned by Google.

In this way, we will “make reality” the foundation that GTM has: having all the services of this company and related to your business or project in one place.

What is Google Tag Manager, What is It for and How Does It Work?

What are the advantages of using Google Tag Manager to manage your projects?

Now that you know what it is and how you can install it for free on your website, I will tell you about some of its main advantages and utilities, and why you should start using this tag management system on your Web pages.

» It is completely free and very easy to use and install

GTM is a free service from Google, you will not have to pay at any time to create an account or implement it on your site.

And not only that, but it is also quite easy, you do not need a great knowledge of code language to do it, since the complex part of the installation and use process is done almost automatically.

» Avoid mistakes when inserting new labels

Precisely because of how easy it is to use, you can already forget about the classic errors that arise when inserting the tracking labels one by one.

A fairly common problem when you have to insert multiple code snippets on the same page.

» Simplify processes and save time

The platform simplifies the long and tedious process required to insert the tags on your site, making your work more comfortable.

Plus, by simplifying this process, you save quite a bit of time and even lines of code.

You go from using multiple code snippets, just a couple, to the container.

»Goodbye to excessive dependence on IT

Although this Google system benefits both Marketing and IT professionals, for Marketing teams, it is no longer a necessity to depend on third parties to install the necessary labels to work.

Now, it is also true that this dependency does not completely disappear, but it is only situational, and generally for very complex or specific codes, something that is not usually common when talking about the most common labels.

» You can do performance tests

A great advantage of Google Tag Manager is that it allows you to carry out various types of tests to check the performance of a tag and its effect on your website. And it’s pretty easy to do, too.

» Does not affect the speed of your website

Since your website does not directly load the tags from its code but does it asynchronously through Google Tag Manager, its general speed is not affected, something that benefits you and your audience a lot.

2 best plugins to implement Google Tag Manager in WordPress

To finish, I would like to show you some of the best plugins and addons that you are going to find, both for WordPress and PrestaShop.

In general, these CMS plugins not only make installation on your website even easier but also help you configure it optimally for you, as well as including extra functionalities without being a master of programming.

1# Google Tag Manager for WordPress

Simply called Google Tag Manager for WordPress, it is a specialized WordPress plugin that allows you to easily integrate GTM on your website, making the almost automatic process of this system becomes an automated process that you can do very quickly.

Thanks to this plugin, you won’t have to worry about having wrongly inserted the code, as it will do it for you.

In addition, it also helps you send the user information and metadata of your page to a data layer for use with GTM, streamlining the process so that you only worry about taking full advantage of the benefits of this system.

Developer: Thomas Geiger
Price: Free
  • GTM4WP Screenshot
  • GTM4WP Screenshot
  • GTM4WP Screenshot
  • GTM4WP Screenshot
  • GTM4WP Screenshot
  • GTM4WP Screenshot

2# Event Tracking for Gravity Forms

Event Tracking for Gravity Forms is an excellent plugin for GTM for those who have Gravity Forms installed on WordPress.

With this plugin, you can automatically manage events for Gravity Forms forms through Google Analytics or Google Tag Manager.

It simplifies the job enormously and is fairly easy to use.

Even so, it is completely optional, since as you will understand, it requires that you have another plugin installed, which in this case is the Gravity Forms.

3 Addons to implement Google Tag Manager in PrestaShop

Now, in the case of PrestaShop, we have some quite interesting modules that can help you get the most out of them. These are:

1# Google Tag Manager Enhanced Ecommerce (UA) – PRO Module

Let’s start with one of the most recommended for PrestaShop, “Google Tag Manager Enhanced Ecommerce (UA) – PRO Module“, it is a module that not only facilitates the integration of this platform to your online store but also increases the information you are able to obtain from your store, ranging from the behavior of the buyer to the economic performance of your store and your products.

This module also generates by itself a data layer or ” dataLayer ” to give a better performance to the information you get through Google Tag Manager.

Its installation is quite simple and direct, so you will not have many complications when configuring it in your PrestaShop store.

2# Google Tag Manager + Add-ons. User activity. Module

A fairly “simple” and direct module, with «Google Tag Manager + Add-ons. User activity. Module», you can quickly integrate the Google tag management system into your online store, while also integrating the functions of Google Optimize and Analytics.

With it, you will be able to obtain a lot of information from your store, at the same time that it includes somewhat interesting additional functions, such as making the IP of your visitors anonymous, and it does not affect the loading speed of your store, so users will not notice any changes.

3# Premium Google Tag Manager Module

If we go to the description of this addon, we have to say that it is an “improved” version of Google Tag Manager Enhanced Ecommerce, so I will not delve much into it.

Premium GTM is a quite famous module and with many downloads, it is highly recommended and its operation is similar to the first one on this list.

It allows you to integrate the system to your online store just by using the ID of your GTM, making it one of the fastest and easiest methods to implement the Google Tag Manager System.

In addition, this version is completely available with support for 3 months (or 12 months with the Zen option), while allowing you to obtain a huge amount of information from your store. It also includes support for Google Optimize, Analytics, and AdWords conversion tracking.


As you have seen, this platform of the most important search engine in the world is much easier to integrate into your daily strategy than you initially thought.

Certainly, as a “master key”, it is priceless, since it will save you a lot of time in having to go to analyze each of the platforms owned by Google that you have implemented in your Online business.

What do you think about Google Tag Manager and how it works?

Do you already have it integrated into your web analytics tasks?

I hope you found it interesting.

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