Even though Google Tag Manager (GTM) has been around for quite some time, a lot of people still fail to understand it thoroughly. In fact, when it came into existence back in 2013 a lot of people were perplexed to know that something like tag management even existed. However as time has passed, Google Tag Manager has emerged as a powerful tool for businesses.
Google Tag Manager vs. Google Analytics
While a lot of people still think of Google Tag Manager as something similar to Google Analytics (GA), the reality is that there is a world of difference between the two. And, in this post, we are going to shed some light on how Google Tag Manager is different than Google Analytics.
So, let us dive into the differences one by one:
GTM is the middle-man
Put simply, GTM serves the purpose of a middleman of any website’s GA implementation. You can simply use GTM to ad GA tracking codes to your websites without making any changes to the code.
In other words, you can deploy the changes faster and in a more efficient manner using GTM. Rather than playing around with the website code, you can simply use GTM and let it do the work for you.
GTM gives you ultimate control
While GA helps you make changes to the website directly, you need to take help of developers to hard code those changes. And, in case you need constant changes you will have to be entirely dependent on the coder to implement these changes.
With GTM it’s not the same. You could edit, add or remove the GA tracking codes all by yourself. What this means is that things are under your ultimate control. You don’t have to run after the coder to do the job for you. And, that’s the beauty of GTM – it brings everything under your ultimate control.
GTM events work as triggers
One of the most interesting things about GTM is events. These events could be used as triggers to define when a tag must be fired. Simply, you can use GTM to fire a GA tag corresponding to a certain action.
For instance, if GTM event ‘form submission’ is used as a trigger, it could fire the tag ‘form submission’ in GA. Got the point?
Google Tag Manager vs. Google Analytics: The two are independent of each other
The one thing that will clear a lot of doubts in your mind regarding the difference between these two terms is the fact that they both can exist independently. GTM does not replace GA or vice versa.
As a matter of fact, GTM serves the purpose to implement GA changes easily and quickly. For instance, you can deploy GA event code snippets and define rules, when each tag must fire and do a lot more with the help of GTM.
GTM does not make GA obsolete
A lot of people have this doubt in mind whether the rise of GTM means that we are going to see an end of GA or is GA going to become obsolete in the future?
Well, the simple answer to this question is a BIG NO.
Both GA and GTM are independent. GA is one of the many tags that you can insert through GTM. GA is still going to be your pit stop to track website traffic and user behavior, and gather all your important metrics. GTM has the sole purpose of making it easy for you to send more custom data to your GA account.
It’s as simple as this!
By making it easier for you to implement changes in the code of your website without playing around too much, GTM eventually serves the purpose to manage and track GA data lot easier than it used to be.
So it won’t be wrong to say that it supplements the need to speed up the analysis process using GA.
You cannot pull reports out of GTM
Your reports will be in GA. But you can make the process of report creation faster and easier! That’s the beauty of GTM.
It allows you to implement a custom data layer to your website code enabling you to collect information you would like to pass to the GTM. It could be anything – user status to page category to blog tags and blog author name.
GA is efficient but GTM saves you all the hassle
GA is a great tool to gather and analyze website data. And, it will continue to be. However, GTM is something that adds to the value of GA by making it easy to implement the changes on the website with ease.
GTM brings a touch of dynamism to GA data, allowing you to leverage the minimum IT sources to get the maximum out of GA.
Not only do you get custom data in a faster and more efficient manner, but you also get to save quite a lot of time as well.
The interplay between the two can help you make the most of your efforts
To sum it up, when you think of Google Tag Manager vs. Google Analytics, all we have to say is that by using both tools you can eventually end up getting the best out of your web marketing endeavors.
With an orchestrated interplay of GA and GTM you can reach your tracking and reporting goals, collect and analyze the desired data and end up creating strategies based on the data you manage to collect.
Saying that GTM makes GA obsolete or vice versa is simply not true! It is just that these two tools make the life easier for marketers by allowing them to take charge of their websites, rather than marketers relying on the developers for getting the changes implemented.
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