One of the biggest advantages of digital marketing, when compared to traditional, offline marketing, is the ability to track your audience’s behavior and use it to more effectively communicate with them. Knowing how visitors interact with your brand online allows you to direct your messaging to better meet them at the right time.

But to make the most of this digital opportunity, you need to ensure you have the right tracking set up on your site—well in advance of when you actually need it. Here are the essential tracking tools to set up.

Not sure how to do it yourself? We can help.

 

1) Google Tag Manager

We’re covering Google Tag Manager first because while it doesn’t do any tracking itself, it’s a tool that allows you to more easily install the tracking codes we’ll talk about next—without needing to find a developer to edit your code.

Google Tag Manager requires two small pieces of code to be implemented on your site—one in the head of every page, and one in the body—and then you can use the tool to set up a variety of meta tags. Analytics, event tracking, ad platforms, heatmaps—if it requires tracking or a piece of installation code, it’s likely Tag Manager will let you set it up without getting into the actual code of your site. This can give you the flexibility to make changes without waiting on your tech team.

To set up Tag Manager, go to tagmanager.google.com.

2) Google Analytics

This one is a must-have. If you own a website, you need to have Google Analytics tracking set up. Google Analytics can give you a wealth of information about how many visits you’re getting, how visitors are finding your site, what content is popular, and which pages don’t get much traction at all.

To get started, go to analytics.google.com and sign up for a free account. You’ll get a piece of tracking code that needs to go in the header of every page you want to track.

3) Google Retargeting

Retargeting is one of the most powerful marketing tools available to online brands. Being able to show ads to people who’ve visited your website means you can remind them of items they’ve left in their carts, nudge them to finish signing up for your event before registration closes, or stay top of mind as they make a decision.

Even if you’re not ready to set up retargeting ads now, having the Google Retargeting pixel on your site will start building up your remarketing audience so it’s ready when you need it. Click here for instructions on how to install your code.

4) Facebook Pixel

If your audience is on Facebook and social media marketing is part of your strategy, installing the Facebook Pixel is a requirement. Did someone visit your conference landing page but not sign up to attend? With this tracking code on your website, you can create a retargeting ad to appear for that visitor while they’re browsing Facebook. You can also track conversions from your Facebook ads and build audiences to target with future campaigns.

The Facebook Pixel is another piece of code you’ll want on your site sooner rather than later, so you can start building up an audience (since both Google and Facebook require a number of unique page visits before you can run ads). To learn how to install this code, visit Facebook’s Ad Manager.

 

When it comes to tracking visitor behavior and gathering data to make your campaigns more effective, this is only the beginning. But having these tracking codes in place will ensure you’re on the right path to maximizing your marketing opportunities.

Dylan Stone, Account Manager headshot

Written by Dylan Stone

“I make the most of every opportunity.”