When it comes to building your startup’s website, just the aesthetic concerns alone—page layouts, color palette, menu structures, etc—can give you a migraine. But your site content? Well, your company won’t ever get off the ground if you can’t get that right. Even if you’ve got a helluva compelling product, if you can’t properly communicate its value while guiding potential customers as nimbly as possible through your online sales funnel, you’ve got big problems.
Unfortunately, tallying online sales alone is merely a superficial metric in terms of which aspects of your site are working, and which aren’t. That’s why site analytics and conversion tracking are so vital not only to the success of your site, but to the success of your business as a whole.
Freaking out about yet another entrepreneurial crash course in an area you know little about? No worries. You don’t need a programming degree in order to put the proper tracking measures in place. All you need is Google Tag Manager (GTM), a free software that allows you to create and house all of your website tags in a single, easy-to-use interface.
Why Google Tag Manager?
Not only does GTM streamline the integration of Google’s other products like Analytics and Adwords tracking on your site–it also supports a score of third party tags (i.e., a SaleCycle template, or custom HTML for your Facebook Pixel). There are also tons and tons of support articles provided by Google as well as other websites. What can become frustrating, however, is that when first using GTM, you’re likely to have to piecemeal your way through one support article after another in order to get things up and running. That’s why we’re providing this GTM series—you’ll have one set of interwoven articles that’ll explain everything you need to know about installing GTM on your website, then implementing analytics and conversion tracking.
How To Install Google Tag Manager
The first thing you have to figure out is how to access your HTML file directory. You will either access your directory via a cPanel interface or an FTP client. But, once again, for the sake of time and the prevalence of hosting sites that use cPanel, we’re going to leave out FTP client instructions.
- Log into your cPanel interface.
All you have to do is navigate to your homepage URL with “/cpanel” tacked onto the ending (i.e., www.yourwebsite.com/cpanel). Your hosting provider should provide support articles about logging into your cPanel interface. Commonly, once you navigate to the cPanel URL, you’ll then log into your hosting provider’s customer portal.
- Click the File Manager icon.
The icon should be located under the sub-grouping “Files.” You’ll then be directed to your file manager interface.
- Find the “public” folder within the directory sidebar.
Navigate to the folder named “wp-content”. Inside of that you’ll find “themes”. Inside of that you’ll find whatever your active theme is (in the example it’s “sober”). On the main directory in the center of the screen, select the header.php file, then click Edit in the command bar above. You’ll now land on a text editor page.
- Log into your GTM account. Click the GTM ID hyperlink near the top right corner of the interface.
- In the “Install Google Tag Manager” window, copy the top code snippet.
- In the text editor window you opened via your cPanel, locate the <head> tag.
Paste the GTM code snippet beneath that, typically beneath the first chunk of code already located directly beneath the <head> tag.
- Back in the “Install Google Tag Manager” window, copy the bottom code snippet.
- In your text editor window, locate the opening <body> tag. Then paste code snippet immediately beneath it. Then click Save in the editor interface.
Congratulations! You’ve officially installed Google Tag Manager on your website. But you’re not quite done just yet. In order to verify you’ve installed GTM properly (and also to analyze tags that you add within GTM in the future, which will talk about in the next article), you should install Google Chrome’s Tag Assistant extension.
Once you’ve installed Tag Assistant, here’s how to enable it on your site:
Click the tag symbol directly to the right of your address bar.
Click the star symbol at the top right corner within the drop-down window.
Refresh your page. You’ll find “Google Tag Manager” next to a tag icon, likely green with a smiley face.
***If the tag icon next to “Google Tag Manager” is blue, don’t worry. It’s almost guaranteed that you still installed code snippets correctly and that GTM will function properly. But if the icon is yellow or red, review the implementation steps to ensure you didn’t make a mistake***
The next installment within the GTM series will explain how to install Google Analytics as well as fundamental conversion tags.
Harness the Tools You Need
While helping dozens and dozens of startups scale out from our innovation and entrepreneurial center, one of the most crucial things we preach is harvesting actionable data. Regardless of a particular startup’s industry, and regardless of their product, there are always concrete website metrics to be parsed as a means for understanding your market demographics and how the form and content of your website does or doesn’t tailor to your target users’ behaviors. Stay tuned for the upcoming articles in this series in order to learn the fundamentals of creating an analytics structure that serves your company to its highest potential.
Contact tekMountain today to learn more about the tech tools your startup needs to make it to the next level.