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8 Implementation Facts • Global Site Tag


Wojtek Andrzejczak
8 Implementation Facts • Global Site Tag

8 implementation facts you should know while implementing Google Floodlight conversions with Global Site Tag.

What is Global Site Tag

Global Site Tag is a JavaScript SDK introduced to unify all Google products to have the same API for conversion and measurements.

It is an elementary JavaScript library that has to be loaded only once on the page, and when it is loaded, we send information that page view, conversion, or the purchase has happened.

Change Floodlight tag format

In the Google Campaign Manager under Advertiser Floodlight Activities, select your Floodlight and under Tag Format switch to “Global site tag” option and save changes.

Google CM / Advertiser / Floodlight Activities / Tag Format
Google CM / Advertiser / Floodlight Activities / Tag Format

Global snippet

When the Global Site Tag option is selected under Tag format, under the Floodlight tag preview section, you find there two main elements. The first of them is Global Snippet. You should implement it on each page in the HEAD section. It will always be the same for all Floodlights under the same advertiser.

Google CM / Advertiser / Floodlight Activities / Floodlight Tag preview
Google CM / Advertiser / Floodlight Activities / Floodlight Tag preview

Extend Global Snippet configuration

If you use Google Tag Manager, it does not apply to you. Otherwise, you need to be now very careful.

If you have Google Analytics, Google Ads account, Google Campaign Manager advertiser, and you would like to track conversion across all of those accounts correctly without missing conversions in the reports. You need to do something fundamental, which is to extend your Global Snippet by adding additional configurations like in the example below.

// our default config
gtag('config', 'DC-123456');

// additional GST configs for Google Ads and Google Analytics
gtag('config', 'AW-987654');
gtag('config', 'UA-098123');

Extending GST will allow Google to model Multi-Channel conversion reports correctly and will avoid situations where you don’t report all or even any conversions for your campaigns.

Note
It does not matter meter from which Google platform the Global Snippet comes from. It is crucial to extend config with other Google platforms, which you use to advertise/analyze within the conversion funnel.

Event snippet

Below you can find the actual event when fires. It counts impression/conversion for our Floodlight. So we should not implement it on every page, instead, specify place and time when it should fire 🙂

Google CM / Advertiser / Floodlight Activities / Floodlight Tag preview
Google CM / Advertiser / Floodlight Activities / Floodlight Tag preview

GoogleTagManager.com domain problem

Global Site Tag and Google Tag Manager use the same domain. The fact that GTM is using the GoogleTagManager.com domain is self-evident. But the fact that that GST also uses the same domain is very confusing and strange.

In the GDPR times, trying to explain to the client and his lawyers that GST is necessary to use and the fact it uses the same domain as GTM does not make things easy. Many companies use Tealium IQ or Adobe DTM, and they don’t want/can’t use other tag manager applications. And when they see the domain name, they reply that they don’t want to use GTM, so they don’t agree to use GST.

I can not remind myself self a more complicated thing I had to explain to anyone in my entire life.

Global Site Tag – SDK URL

GST JavaScript library is loaded under the path /gtag/js?id=*. It does not load any tag container, just a JavaScript API to communicate with Google platforms that some impressions/conversions were triggered on the website.

You can not call or connect GST with any GTM container. It is not possible.

Global Site Tag example URL
Global Site Tag example URL

Google Tag Manager – container URL

GTM tag container is loaded under the path /gtm.js?id=*. In the GTM you can implement Google Floodlights, Google Analytics, Google Ads conversions (and many more), and by default, they will be using Global Site Tag implementation for Google tags.

Google Tag Manager, example installation snippet
Google Tag Manager, example installation snippet

Does it make sense to switch to GST?

Yes, it does.

3rd party cookies are dead. Old Google conversion tags use 3rd party cookies only. So no cookies, no conversions.

Whatever Google will change within Global Site Tag to improve our campaign conversions, it will happen without our interaction and need to re-implement everything again.

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