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(Updated 27 February 2018) The current version of Google Tag Manager was released in October 2014. With the release, we saw a brand-spanking new UI, a lot of new functionalities (revamped auto-event tracking, for example), plus a new terminology to cope with. We moved away from the programming-centric concepts of Macros and Rules to the more tactile variables and triggers. It’s difficult to rank the changes. The new Auto-Event Tracking is perhaps most impactful, but the improvements done to triggers and variables, when compared to the previous version of GTM, require attention as well.

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One of the cool things about using a tag management solution is that you can leverage variables like never before. In Google Tag Manager, these variables are referred to as macros, and you can identify a macro with the syntax of {{macro name}}. In this tip I’ll show you how you can actually call macros from other macros, using a Lookup Table as an example. Tip 5: Chain Macros In Lookup Tables (And Other Macros) It’s not just Lookup Tables, either.

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It’s time to dig into my tip library for some pretty cool things you can do with Google Tag Manager to enhance your site tagging. Some of these are macro magic through and through, some of these are best practices, and some of these are things that will make your life easier while managing a tag management solution. I’ve split this post into two parts to make it more Hobbit and less Lord Of the Rings length-wise.

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Over the last couple of posts I’ve mainly been doing proof-of-concept (POC) tests with Google Tag Manager. The great thing about a POC is that you don’t really need to have any viable results or insight-driving technological innovations. The point is to showcase some feature of the platform on which the experiment was conducted. In this post, I’ll take a care-free step into the world of POCs again. My goal is to do a simple split test in order to identify which variant of a landing page (or key element thereof) produces the most conversions.

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There is a new, updated version of this article for the new version of Google Tag Manager. I strongly suggest you read that as well! I really enjoy the ad hoc Q&A sessions my blog posts have inspired. I haven’t said this enough, but I am really, REALLY grateful to people who take their time to comment on my posts, even if it’s just say a quick “Hi!”. The main reason I enjoy getting blog comments is because they often turn into blog posts.

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(Last updated June 2014) This post is an attempt at a whole new level of interaction. These words will transcend the barriers of time and space, bridging together the physical world and its digital counterpart. You see, in an undisclosed number of hours after the publishing of this blog post, I will be talking at the MeasureCamp unconference on this very subject. Or, I hope I will. The whole unconference thing is somewhat confusing, and it involves lighting-fast reflexes and street smarts for slot selection; traits which I sadly lack.

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You’ve probably come across a number of guides or posts talking about why it’s necessary to block so-called internal traffic from your web analytics reports. The reasons are pretty solid: internal traffic does not emulate normal visitor behavior, it rarely contributes to conversions (skewing up your conversion rate), it inflates page views, and it wreaks havoc on your granular, page-by-page data. Internal traffic is vaguely described as “your employees”, “people really close to your brand”, “your marketing department”, “your web editors”, and so on.

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Simo Ahava

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

Senior Data Advocate at Reaktor

Finland