Before you begin
To save time and confusion, here are some things to consider before you begin your Google Tag Manager implementation.
Are you new to Tag Manager or Analytics?
Tag Manager is best used as part of a measurement strategy and tag implementation plan for your website or mobile app. If you are new to Google Tag Manager, Google Analytics Academy provides a hands-on introductory course on how to build a measurement strategy and implement your plans with Tag Manager.
If you are just getting started with the business of gathering website or app metrics, Google Analytics Academy provides a full suite of courses that teach everything from introductory basics of Analytics tracking to advanced strategies and techniques.
How many accounts are needed? Who should create them?
When you first set up a Tag Manager account, the best practice is to put a strategy in place for who will manage the account over the long term, and to define how account ownership will be handled should a member of your team change roles.
Another best practice is to set up one Tag Manager account per organization. The organization for which the tags will be managed should create the Tag Manager account. For example, if an agency manages tags on behalf of your company, then your company should create the Tag Manager account and add the agency's Google account as a user.
Agencies can manage their clients' existing accounts in the admin section of Tag Manager. Multiple users can manage the same Google Tag Manager account, and each user can be given different access permissions by the account administrators. 360 customers can add and control additional containers using zones.
Are you a mobile app developer?
Set up one container per mobile app. Each new major version of your app should have a new container. Minor updates to an app can use the same container.
Do you manage multiple web domains?
The best practice is to set up one container per web domain. However, if the user experience and tags on a website span more than one domain, it's best to set up a single container that serves all the domains involved. Here are a few considerations:
- Configurations can't easily be shared across containers without using container export and import, or by using the API. If the tags and firing logic is similar across domains, use a single container.
- When someone publishes a container, all changes go live, regardless of domain. If you need to apply changes to one domain without affecting other domains, use a different container for each domain.
Learn more about how to set up cross domain tracking.
What tags do I need? Where should I deploy them?
The best practice for every Tag Manager implementation should be to start with an analytics strategy and tag implementation plan. Identify all the tags you have deployed on your existing site or app. For new projects, identify the kinds of tags you will need.
Think about what information you want to collect and determine if there are additional tags you want to deploy. If the data you want to collect is not available, refer to the developer documentation for information on how to pass additional data to tags.
If all of your tags fire as pages load, and each page has a unique URL, a basic container implementation is sufficient. If your tag firing scenarios are more complex, you may want to implement a more customized container implementation. These custom solutions often implement a data layer, which is code that helps Tag Manager pass data from your site or app to your tags.