Server-Side Tracking With GTM

Server-Side Tracking Agencies With GTM at Low Cost

It manages its own data collection and sharing, speeds up page load times, and relies solely on first-party cookies.

Server-side Tracking setup with Google Tag Manager

With traditional client-side tracking, users’ browsers are littered with all sorts of third-party JavaScript downloaded by the many marketing pixels implemented on your website. This all changes with the introduction of a server-side implementation of Google Tag Manager.

Advantages of Server-Side Tracking

  1. Reduced page load time
  2. Higher compliance, send only the data you approve
  3. First Party Cookies, reduce the impact of ad blockers
  4. Solve the limiting cookie expiration on Safari (ITP)
  5. Hide sensitive API Keys and Client Secrets
Every time one of those marketing pixels are installed on your website, you have basically established a direct communication channel between your users’ web browsers and the third-party vendor’s platforms. With Server-Side Tracking instead, for every event happening on your website a single HTTP request is sent to your own server. From there, behind the scenes, you can manage which data to send to third-party vendors, after having it cleaned and filtered to your requirements.

This paradigm-shifting technology brings many advantages to web tracking:

Reduced page load time

The web page downloads and processes many resources to fully load. With the current average number of JavaScript snippets used for statistical and marketing purposes, websites load very slowly, even if the scripts are loaded asynchronously. In sGTM, one transfer of information is transferred to his GTM container on the server side. The latter modifies the data according to your specifications and sends it to selected third-party platforms (Google Analytics, Facebook Ads, CRM, etc.). Very few third-party platforms currently provide GTM templates for use with GTM’s server-side tracking container, so start leveraging server-side tracking by creating custom API calls for your provider’s platform. I can. Don’t wait for the industry to catch up.

Higher compliance, send only the data you approve

Third-party pixels can collect more data about you than you might think. B. Device information such as screen size, browser and operating system, and browser settings. Server-side tracking allows you to control exactly what is sent to these providers and in what format, as your data is intercepted and modified before it is sent. to that destination. Data that may be used for user profiling and fingerprinting can therefore be deleted before it reaches its final destination. This provides significant benefits for GDPR compliance and related data protection measures.

First Party Cookies / Reduce the impact of ad blockers

Servers should ideally be located on subdomains of your top-level domain, so most ad blockers will allow tracking data to be sent without blocking this type of traffic. You have the option to edit the response returned to the website from the server-side container. B. Which cookies to set. These could all be first party cookies from the same top level domain.

Solve the limiting cookie expiration on Safari (ITP)

The Apple Safari browser has a number of privacy-enhancing features known as Intelligent Tracking Prevention (ITP). One of its features is that the first-party cookie created by JavaScript expires automatically after 7 days. Historically, this has made tracking and identifying iOS users very difficult. This limitation can be circumvented if the cookie is set by the server instead. In other words, the expiration time of the cookie is whatever you set on the server.

Hide Sensitive API Keys and Client Secrets

API Keys, Client Secrets, or API Tokens can be stored directly in the server-side GTM container, greatly improving security and allowing users to not even publish it. For example, the Google Analytics UA ID can only be added at the server-side container level and is not visible when the website is loaded in the browser. This may eliminate a known spamming technique of stealing Google Analytics UA IDs and sending bogus traffic to them.

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