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Why Google Tag Manager

A Tag Management System (TMS) replaces hard-coded tags that are used for marketing, analytics, and testing on a website, with dynamic tags that are easier to implement and update. Every tag management system uses a container tag – a small snippet of code that allows you to dynamically insert tags into your website. You can think of container tags as buckets that hold other types of tags. You control which tags are added to the buckets using a simple web interface. In 2012, Google released a TMS called Google Tag Manager, which has quickly become one of the most widely used Tag Management Systems in the market.

The benefits of tag management (and specifically Google Tag Manager) are enormous to any business, large or small. You can add and update Google AdWords tags, Google Analytics tags, DoubleClick Floodlight tags and many non-Google third-party tags directly from Google Tag Manager, instead of editing site code. This reduces errors, frees you from having to involve a webmaster, and allows you to quickly deploy tags on your site.

To effectively use tag management, it’s important to understand basic concepts like the data layer, triggers, and variables.

Google Tag Manager uses a data layer to capture key data points. A data layer is like a spreadsheet of information you want to capture about the pages and activities that your users are viewing and performing. You collect all of the information in a data layer and send it along to Google Analytics through Google Tag Manager.

For example, when someone clicks a "Continue Reading" link on your website, you could create a data layer event that records the user clicked on the link. You can then dynamically create a trigger and a tag in Google Tag Manager that automatically fires an event to Google Analytics. Without the data layer, you would need to manually write JavaScript to capture this information.

For more information about Google Tag Manager basics, read these articles from the Google Tag Manager Help Center:

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