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As I have finally managed to pick up my jaw from the floor, it’s now time to tell you what’s got me so excited. Google Tag Manager recently released a new feature called Custom Templates. Actually, it’s not fair to call it a feature. It’s a full-blown paradigm shift in how we use Google Tag Manager. It’s a suite of features designed to help brands, companies, and users create and share their own custom JavaScript and HTML setups with ease, while taking care that the code is optimized for delivery in the web browser.

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Some four years ago, Google Tag Manager released a new trigger predicate named matches CSS selector. Slowly but surely, it has evolved into one of the most useful little features in GTM. Even though I’ve written about CSS selectors many times before, I wanted to compile all the relevant information into a single guide. For an external resource, I recommend bookmarking the w3schools.com CSS Selector Reference. But for your day-to-day use of CSS selectors in GTM, this guide will hopefully prove useful.

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Enhanced Ecommerce is certainly one of the finest reporting user interface features that Google Analytics has to offer. Enhanced Ecommerce, as the name implies, is a set of dimensions, metrics, and reports, which combine to provide you with a fairly complete view into how users are interacting with your products in your webstore. The main downside of Enhanced Ecommerce is, as with all good things, that it’s complicated to implement.

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Google Tag Manager supports loading multiple containers on the same page. It’s useful if you have multiple companies or organizations working on the same site, but for one reason or another (e.g. governance) you want to restrict access to your main container. In these situations, having the other party create their own container and adding it to the site is the best of bad options. Well, in Google Tag Manager 360, we now have Zones that make managing multiple partners’ containers quite a bit easier.

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Scroll depth tracking in web analytics is one of those things you simply must do, especially if you have a content-heavy site. Tracking scroll depth not only gives you an indication of how much users are digesting your content, but it also lets you turn meaningless metrics such as Bounce Rate into something far more useful. If you’ve already been tracking scroll depth in Google Tag Manager, you’ve probably been using either Rob Flaherty’s brilliant Scroll Depth jQuery plugin, or Bounteous’ equally ingenious Scroll Tracking recipe.

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Ever since the Lookup Table variable was introduced in Google Tag Manager, users have been craving for more. The Lookup Table does exactly what it promises: lookups. These are exact match operations, which are extremely inexpensive to perform, because they can only have a binary result: either the match exists in the data store being queried or it doesn’t. This performance stays constant even if the data store being queried increases in size.

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Google Tag Manager has a Trigger type which fires after a certain duration of time has passed on the web page: the Timer Trigger. The most common uses for the Timer Trigger seem to be either to send an event to Google Analytics after X seconds of dwell time (to kill the Bounce), or to defer a Tag from firing until some asynchronous request has completed with certainty. In the previous version of Google Tag Manager, the Timer was a separate listener Tag, which meant that you could start a timer based on a user interaction such as a click.

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Simo Ahava

Husband | Father | Analytics developer
simo (at) simoahava.com

Senior Data Advocate at Reaktor

Finland