Quite a while ago, I wrote an article on what I considered (then) to be my favorite Google Tag Manager resources. Many of them are still very valid, but I still wanted to write a follow-up. Times have changed, and GTM is very different from what it was two years ago when I wrote the post. So in this article, I want to divert your attention to 10 blogs, 10 articles, and 10 people - all which are and/or share excellent Google Tag Manager content on a periodic basis.
One of the less-known features of Google Tag Manager, a hidden gem if you will, is the URL Source setting in the URL Variable type. It lets you parse any URL String for its components. Tip 38: Parse URL strings with the URL Source setting The setting itself is easy to find. Just edit an existing URL Variable, or create a new one. Then, scroll down to the More Settings divider, expand it, and you’ll see the URL Source drop-down list.
There might be many reasons you’d want to fire a single Tag multiple times in Google Tag Manager. The most common one is when you want to deploy multiples of a single tracking point on the web. Perhaps you have a roll-up account you want to send the hits to, in addition to the site-specific tracking property. Quite a while ago, I gave a solution for this with a specific focus on Google Analytics Tags.
You might have noticed that the Referral Exclusion List in Google Analytics is difficult to maintain. You can’t copy a list from one property to another, the list is a wildcard match for domain names (so all subdomains are automatically excluded), and it’s just about the clunkiest user interface we’ve seen since ERP tools from the 1990s. A while ago, I wrote of a solution which lets you manage referral exclusions using Google Tag Manager, and it’s still a neat trick, as it’s way more flexible than said clunky UI.
Google Tag Manager, our favorite free tag management solution, has always struggled with its enterprise-worthiness. There are many features still lacking, most of which have to do with working in multi-user environments. Now, grab the last word of that sentence (see what I did there), and hug it tightly, for GTM just introduced a new, enterprise-friendly feature: Environments. These Environments are actually browser cookies, which you use to link a Google Tag Manager container state with the browser of the user who needs to or wants to view that particular state.
NOTE! This solution has been upgraded, and the new approach can be found here. If you’re unfamiliar with the lingo, cross-domain tracking is a hack used by Google Analytics to circumvent the web browser’s same-origin policy. Essentially, the policy dictates that browser cookies can only be shared with a parent domain and all its sub-domains. In other words, domainA.com and domainB.com do not share cookies. Since Google Analytics calculates sessions and users by using a cookie, this is problematic.
I’ve been meaning to write about Google Tag Manager for mobile apps for such a long time. Finally, I have some great use cases to share, as well as some useful examples for implementing GTM for iOS. That’s right, this is an iOS guide, and, to be more specific, geared towards a successful Swift implementation. If you didn’t know, Swift is a relatively new programming language, developed by Apple for iOS and OS X programming.