What is a Tag Management Solution?


3 min read

Posted by Darren McManus on April 20, 2015

What is a Tag Management Solution?

A Tag Management Solution (TMS) allows businesses to update marketing and analytics tags on their website or mobile apps without the need for a developer. A TMS for tags is comparable to a CMS for content, and provides an easy to use interface where non-technical users can create and publish tags to their website or mobile app in real time. They can also manage existing tags which have previously been published via the system. TMS support a whole range of tags, including advertising tags analytic tags and custom tags (HTML and JavaScript).

Common tags used include Adwords, DoubleClick, Adroll, Google Analytics, ClickTale, Crazy Egg, etc. Tags are published via the TMS, independent of IT deployments. This allows business and marketing teams to publish marketing tags to the website or mobile app whenever they need to. An incredibly valuable tool, it can be used when managing marketing and advertising campaigns where you do not have to wait until the next IT release. It is invaluable to any organisation, particularly those with a longer IT deployment and testing cycle.

Advantages of Tag Management Solutions:

  • Improved performance – results in decreased page load times as tags are loaded asynchronously, meaning tags load independent of the page loading.
  • Reduced costs – reduced IT developer costs to publish hard coded tags.
  • Superior marketing capabilities – efficient publishing of tags allows businesses to measure more, improving data and insights – and ultimately performance too.
  • Faster publishing – tags are published independent of IT deployments cycle. This is particularly important for large organisation and Mobile Apps.
  • More flexible – greater control of how tags are activated.
  • Built-in test tools – most TMS come with built-in tag testing or debug tools, thereby reducing errors
TMS have been around for some time, although many of the services offered were aimed at enterprise customers and had a hefty price tag attached. Google has changed that with the launch of Google Tag Manager (GTM), a free to use tag management solution for businesses of any size. Although still a beta product, many enterprise level clients have adopted GTM as the tool of choice.

Advantages of Google Tag Manager

• Free – this is a key differentiator from other products and lowers adoption significantly.
• Supports Google and non-Google tags - easily to use tag templates for both Google and popular non Google Tags. More tags templates are becoming available regularly.
• Growing platform – Google has recently launched the new and improved second version of their GTM platform. This indicates Google are committed to the platform.
• All of the benefits of TMS solutions as noted earlier.

So why would Google offer you this solution / product for free? That’s easy – Google understands the more a business can attribute to online channel performance the more they will continue to invest in the channel. With 80% of all digital advertising spend online going to Google, they will naturally benefit from any further increase in digital spend. Google is well known for providing excellent tools for free, such as Google Analytics or Google Webmaster Tools.

We believe Google Tag Manager will complement that offering. Recently we have seen clients go from little or no website tracking to rolling out digital analytic strategies that support data driven decision making within the business.

Get in touch ( if you want to know more about TMS or to develop your Digital Tracking Strategy.

About the Author

Darren McManus
Darren McManus

Darren is a Web Analytics and SEO Specialist at Arekibo. He has a keen interest in analytics and getting results and has spoken at a number of conferences.