Create Slack Notification System for Google Tag Manager Changes

Until recently, I had a feature on GTM Tools that polled the user's Google Tag Manager container(s) for a recently published version. If one was found, a notification was sent to a Slack app, which forwarded it to a workspace and channel of the user's choice. This was fine, except for the fact that polling the GTM and Slack APIs for dozens upon dozens of containers is a total resource hog, and the only way I can maintain GTM Tools is it doesn't have API leaks like that. Read More…

#GTMTips: Collect ISP as a Custom Dimension in Google Analytics

Update 6 April 2020: I updated the template in the gallery to the latest version of the IP Geolocation API SDK, which no longer requires jQuery. Also, the SDK now handles API request caching to browser storage automatically, so the “Enable Session Storage” option was added to the template. Google Analytics had been foreshadowing the deprecation of the Network Domain and Service Provider custom dimensions since late 2019. On February 4, the plug was finally pulled, and both these dimensions started flatlining to (not set) in Google Analytics reports. Read More…

#GTMTips: Get Latest Exchange Rates for Client-Side Conversions

It's been a while since I've last written a bona fide Google Tag Manager trick, so here comes. This was inspired by Bart Gibby's question in Measure Slack. The purpose is to fetch the latest currency exchange rates from the exchangeratesapi.io service, cache them using sessionStorage, and push the results into dataLayer. From dataLayer, they can then be utilized in Custom JavaScript variables and custom variable templates to perform client-side conversions. Read More…

DIY Google Ads Account Monitor With R, AdWords API, and Slack API

Every now and then I'm fortunate enough to be able to publish guest posts by illustrious people in the analytics and digital marketing industries. This time, I get to work with an old colleague of mine who's a veritable wizard when it comes to building solutions that make our daily work in the digital industry so much smoother. Erik Grönroos works as an analyst in MarkkinointiAkatemia, a Finnish digital customer acquisition agency. Read More…

Workspace Mode in GTM Tools

It's time for a big feature update to my GTM Tools, a free tool for managing your Google Tag Manager containers, tags, triggers, variables, and now: workspaces. In this article, I'll quickly go over the main features of Workspace mode. Be sure to check out the updated Release Notes & User Guide. Introduction First of all, you can access Workspace mode through the container selection screen, or via the container page: Read More…

New Tools Released

Over the past few weeks, I've been coding like crazy. The three biggest outcomes of this frenzy have been this new blog design (switched finally away from WordPress and took the plunge back into the world static sites using Hugo), a new Google Sheets add-on for managing Google Tag Manager containers and assets, and a Slack integration in GTM Tools. In this article, I'll quickly introduce the last two, as I'm writing a separate article about the site redesign. Read More…

GTM Tools: Release Notes and User Guide

With the release of the latest Google Tag Manager API version, it's time to release the new version of GTM Tools. Most of the changes have been done under the hood, with the entire codebase refactored for improved stability. I released the first toolset in October 2014, and quickly released an updated UI a few months later. Aside from a few bug fixes and stability improvements, the tools have remained largely unchanged since then. Read More…

Google Tag Manager API V2 Released

Google Tag Manager has a very nifty programmatic API that lets you do almost anything that's also possible within the GTM UI. I've used the API a lot, most notably for my GTM Tools, which might be getting a new release soon, too! The API was recently updated to its second release version (V2), and in this article I want to go over the additions, removals, and changes that the new version introduced. Read More…

Mixcloud Player Tracking in Google Tag Manager

A couple of years ago I wrote an article on tracking interactions with the SoundCloud widget via Google Tag Manager. When a platform provides a JavaScript embed API, it's surprisingly easy to track interactions with the player. You've seen this with YouTube, with SoundCloud, with JWPlayer, and now you'll see how to do this with the Mixcloud player. If you don't know what Mixcloud is, well it's a hugely popular streaming service for DJs, podcasts, radio shows, and other published radio media. Read More…

Spam Filter Insertion Tool

Last weekend, I wrote a very simple web app that automatically creates a number of referral spam filters to tackle the problem that seems to have everybody all riled up. For a nice recap of the situation, take a look at this post by Jeff Sauer, or this article by Mike Sullivan. This isn't an opinion piece, even though I've got a great number of opinions about this issue. Read More…