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Understanding Google Tag Manager: From Basics to Advanced Features

Google Tag Manager (GTM) is a free tool that makes it easier to manage tracking and marketing tags on websites. It allows you to quickly add and update tags for analytics, conversion tracking and ad targeting without touching the website code.

What is Google Tag Manager and why do you need it?

Google Tag Manager (GTM) is a tool that simplifies adding and managing codes on your website. Instead of manually editing codes, this one lets you easily insert and update tracking codes like Google Analytics or Facebook (Meta) Pixel, through a user-friendly interface. This means fewer errors and faster execution, which is key to effective web analytics and advertising.

google tag manager gtm google ads

Understanding tags, triggers and variables in GTM

In GTM there are "tags" - these are commands that tell your website what to do, such as tracking page views and such. "Triggers” are rules that specify when the tag should be executed - for example, when a visitor clicks a certain button. "Variables” are used to store and use specific information in tags and triggers, such as visitor information.

By understanding these elements, you can use GTM to improve tracking and personalize the web experience without having to touch the code of your website.

How to get started with Google Tag Manager

Getting started with is simpler than it might seem and can make managing your website a lot easier. The first step is to create an account and add the generated code to your website. This allows you to manage all your tracking and marketing tags in one place, without the need to directly touch the page code.

Creating your first GTM account

Visit the Google Tag Manager website and sign in with your Google account. After logging in, click on "Create an account". Enter your account name (usually your company name) and website name. The system will guide you through the setup process, including platform selection (website, iOS, Android, AMP).

After the setup is complete, two codes will be generated that you will need to add to your website: one into the head and the second one right after the body opening. That step is crucial because it allows Tag Manager to start receiving and processing data from your website.

Google tag manager setup

Adding GTM code to your website

After creating an account and receiving the codes, it's time to add them to your website. Ideally this should be done by someone experienced in editing websites, although the process is quite simple:

  1. Copy the first piece of the code and stick it as close as possible to the start of your tag on every page of your website.
  2. The second part of the code should be pasted right after opening of the <body> tag.

Adding these codes to your website is a one-time process, which allows you to manage all further changes and additions of tags directly through the GTM interface without having to touch the website code. This not only simplifies the tag management process, but also reduces the possibility of errors and enables faster implementation of marketing and analytics strategies.

Advanced features of Google Tag Manager

Once you've mastered the basics of Google Tag Manager, you can start exploring its advanced features. These features allow you to take advantage of stronger tracking, more flexible tag management, and improve the personalization of the user experience on your website.

Advanced features include dynamic event tracking, configuring complex triggers, and using variables to customize tags.

Conversion tracking

Conversion tracking is critical to understanding the success of your marketing campaigns. With GTM, you can set tags to track specific user actions, such as purchases, newsletter signups, or content downloads. For this, you will use triggers that are activated when the user performs the desired action.

For example, you can set a trigger that fires when a user reaches the thank you page after submitting a form. This allows you to accurately measure the ROI of your campaigns and optimize your marketing efforts.

user tracking gtm

Personalization of online experiences

GTM also allows the improving of user experience on your website with personalization. Using variables and triggers, you can display targeted content or offers to specific segments of visitors.

For example, you can set a particular offer to appear only to visitors from a certain geographic location or to those who have already visited certain parts of your website.

Personalization not only improves user experience, but can also increase conversions and customer loyalty.

Performance measurement and analytics

Google Tag Manager is not just a tag management tool; it is also a powerful tool for measuring the performance of your website and analyzing visitor behavior. By integrating with analytics tools like Google Analytics, you can gain valuable insights into the performance of your websites, advertising campaigns and content. This allows you to make informed, data-driven decisions and improve your online presence.

Integration with Google Analytics

The integration of Google Tag Manager with Google Analytics is one of the most common. You can easily track by adding a tracking code to your website visits, bounce rates, conversions and and other key metrics.

Tag Manager also allows you to easily set up custom tracking, such as tracking link clicks, file downloads, and video interactions. This gives you a better understanding of how users access and interact with your website.

Optimizing Google ads with GTM

Google Tag Manager also proves to be an outstanding tool for optimizing Google Ads campaigns. By integrating with the Google Ads platform, you can track conversions more effectively, customize your ad targeting and improve your ROI your advertising efforts.

And the integration also makes it easy to set up conversion tracking tags, which are key to measuring the success of your ad campaigns. This way you can see exactly which ads, keywords or landing pages are driving the most conversions.

Enter the digital world with Apollo Digital

Apollo Digital is a young and innovative agency for digital marketing, where we deal with the implementation of all kinds of solutions for clients. Of course, in this kind of work, data is extremely important, which is why we take care of the appropriate implementation of analytical tools in all our projects.

At Apollo Digital, we understand that every company is unique, so we approach individually, with the aim of finding and implementing solutions that best meet the specific needs and goals of our clients.

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