99 Things You Can Do with Google Tag Manager

Ah… Good old clickbait. Add a huge number to the title of the popular topic and you’re good to go. Oh, I almost forgot to mention that #54 will shock you and you won’t believe what is in the #72!

Just kidding. All the entries in the list are definitely worth checking out. Pinky promise.

Unless you lived under a rock for the last 5 years, you probably have heard at least something about Google Tag Manager. But if that name still does not ring a bell, here’s a quick introduction: GTM is a free software from Google that allows you to install various types of code (tags) to your website, like Google Analytics tracking code, Google Analytics event codes, Google Ads conversion scripts, etc.

But that’s just the tip of the iceberg as there are many more things you can do with Google Tag Manager. Interested in increasing page load speed, implementing remarketing codes, tracking clicks or form submissions? Well, you’re in the right place because you’re about to see 99 Google Tag Manager use cases (and that number will definitely keep growing in the future).

 

Before we continue

This blog post assumes that you have at least some basic knowledge of Google Tag Manager. If you consider yourself being a total stranger in this territory, read this: 11 reasons why you should use Google Tag Manager.

Good to go? Let’s continue!

Google Tag Manager Use Cases

I’ve compiled a whole bunch of various articles, blog posts, resources explaining one or another GTM technique that you can apply in your analytics/marketing stack. The list is definitely not finite, therefore if you notice that I missed (or intentionally skipped) something, let me know in the comments or via any other channel you can possibly find me on (Twitter, Linkedin, etc.).

I’ll be more than happy to add that resource.

All items in the list are split into the following categories:

 

Getting started

Usually, every GTM journey starts with the installation and basic tracking. Since there are different entities that can be tracked, naturally, there are different solutions for them.

#1. Track website page views

#2. Track page views of a single-page website or web application.

#3. Track Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP). Keep in mind that AMPs have a lot of tracking limitations compared to a regular website but there are still some things you can do with GTM and Simo explains them.

#4. Track mobile applications. Even though analyticsmania.com isn’t dedicated to mobile app tracking, the aforementioned resource (and this one) can help you get started.

#5. Easily install various 3rd-party tools by using built-in tag templates. Google Tag Manager features a powerful tag template system to help simplify publishing of tracking codes and eliminate errors. In addition to the templates for Google tags such as Analytics, AdWords, and DoubleClick, templates for a growing list of certified vendors are also supported.

 

Clicks

#6. Track button clicks. Interested in tracking Add to cartBuy, or other buttons? Then this tutorial is just what you need.

#7. Track clicks of social buttons (e.g. Tweet). Unfortunately, some buttons cannot be tracked with default click triggers because they are embedded by using an *evil* technology called iFrame 🙂 Luckily, sometimes it’s possible to use custom solutions. Also, you might be interested in how to track 3rd party sharing plugins, like AddThis.

#8. Track contact links (emails (mailto🙂 and phone numbers (tel:)).

#9. Track file downloads, e.g. PDFs.

#10. Track outbound (external) link clicks. Know where your visitors are leaving. If you’re in a hurry, download and import this GTM recipe (ready-made GTM container template).

#11. Track affiliate link clicks. If you are doing affiliate marketing on your website, you might want to track which affiliate links are clicked the most.

#12. Link tracking in general. Got any other link tracking ideas? This guide will show you the basics.

Google Tag Manager Course - Learn More

Forms

#13. Track form submissions. A comprehensive guide with 6 GTM form tracking techniques. Many different types of forms = many different form tracking methods.

#14. Track form abandonment. Keep in mind that not all forms are supported by this solution so make sure you read the requirements carefully.

#15. Drop-down field selection tracking

#16. Form field timing tracking. Track how long does it take your users to fill out a particular form field.

#17. Form submission timing tracking. Track how long does it take your users to submit a form.

#18. Pre-fill form fields. This technique is especially useful if you want is the traffic source of your form submissions (and you’ll see that data in CRM or another list where all your form submissions are stored).

#19. Track checkboxes

 

Sales, ecommerce, conversions, remarketing

#20. Implement Google Analytics Standard Ecommerce features

#21. Implement Google Analytics Enhanced Ecommerce features

#22. Track affiliate sales. If you run your own affiliate program, you can do that via Google Analytics. Of course, keep in mind that the more recommended way is to use specialized tools but if you want to get started quickly, this might be a solution for you.

#23. Install remarketing codes, pixels, like Google Ads (ex Adwords) remarketing or Facebook Pixel.

#24. Track very large ecommerce transactions with Google Analytics

#25. Track conversions (Google Ads (ex Adwords), Facebook Pixel, etc.).

#26. Track Google Ads (ex Adwords) call conversions

#27. Implement dynamic remarketing. Here is another resource WordPress users might find useful.

 

Players

#28. Track video players like Youtube, Vimeo, JW player, Wistia, generic HTML5 players, etc.

#29. Track audio players like Soundcloud and Mixcloud.

 

Cookies and privacy

#30. Set, read and delete cookies. If you haven’t used this before, check this guide asap. The ability to use cookies in GTM has solved many problems of mine (and my projects).

#31. Configure cookie consent banners. Since this topic is still hot in the web space, there is a whole bunch of solutions. Choose whatever you find suitable for your needs and implement it right away:

#32. Easier management of tags in order to be GDPR compliant. Once you implement the cookie consent mechanism via GTM, you can update all your tags to respect visitor’s preferences. Has a visitor declined from being tracked for marketing purposes? Then with GTM, you can automatically block Facebook pixel and other related marketing tags from firing.

#33. Store cookie consent data in Google Analytics

#34.  Count pageviews in a cookie. You can fire a particular tag on just, say, the 3rd page view.

#35. Fire tags accordingly to user’s traffic source. This information is stored in a cookie which replicates the old Google Analytics UTMZ cookie. With this solution, you can fire a specific tag only when a visitor completes a purchase and has landed on your page from Google’s search results.

#36. Remove Personally Identifiable Information (PII) from URLs. According to Google Analytics terms of use, you cannot store personal information in their reports. So if your page URLs contain email addresses or other PII, you can rewrite it with GTM before that data is even sent to Google Analytics.

#37. Block tracking codes from firing if a visitor has enabled “Do not track” setting in his/her browser. This is yet another thing you should keep in mind while trying to respect visitor’s privacy preferences.

 

Browser-related, navigation

#38. Check if an ad blocker is present

#39. Detect incognito mode. And here an alternative.

#40. Track visitor’s intentions to leave a website (works on desktop browsers).

#41. Track when visitor prints the page

#42. Track when a visitor copies the page

#43. SERP bounce rate. Find out how many people are jumping back to the search results right after landing on your website.

#44. Track when a browser tab is visible or hidden

#45. Track visitor navigation (when a user/visitor navigates from page to page, reloads the page, etc.).

#46. Implement Scroll tracking and make these additional customizations to make it bulletproof.

#47. Track when a mouse hovers on a particular website element

#48. Track website’s autocomplete search

#49. Track Page not found errors (404) and find out where your website’s dead ends.

Alright! You’re in the middle of the list. 49 down, 50 more Google Tag Manager use cases to go. If you feel overwhelmed, bookmark this page and come back any time later!

 

Additional user data

#50. Fetch visitor’s local time and send it as a custom dimension to Google Analytics

#51. Fetch visitor’s weather data and also send it as a custom dimension to Google Analytics

#52. Geolocation: use visitor’s city or country in your tags and triggers

#53. Fire tags based on visitor’s device type (see the tip #4)

#54. Get visitor’s screen width (see the tip #7)

Julius Fedorovicius

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