Event Tracking in Google Analytics with Google Tag Manager

Event tracking is one of those Google Analytics features which marketers and conversion rate optimization experts keep an eye on. There’s a lot to track on a website. Unlike traditional event tracking methods which requires hard-coding each click, Google Tag Manager has an Auto-Event Tracking functionality to make the process simpler. In this post, we discuss how you can create event tracking in Google Analytics with Google Tag Manager (GTM).

Creating Event Tracking in Google Tag Manager

Auto-event tracking can be implemented either by using built-in variables or user-defined variables. We will go through a generalized 4-step process to create an event tracking using auto-event tracking function of GTM.

Step 1: Create a new tag

Select ‘New’ under the tag menu. In the Choose Product section, select Google Analytics from the list of products. Click ‘Continue’. Then when choosing a Tag Type, select Universal Analytics.


Step 2: Configure the tag

Before you proceed, ensure that your tracking ID is setup. Change the Track Type to ‘Event’. Selecting ‘Event’ will show you a set of boxes below it, each being a field for the parameters of event tracking--Category, Action, Label, and Value.

‘Category’ is often chosen to denote where the event is taking place. ‘Action’ field usually denotes the action that is actually the trigger. It can be a simple video view, form submission, or clicking a particular link. ‘Label’ is optional but it is recommended that it should be filled and denotes which exact action did take place. ‘Value’ box and ‘Non-interaction’ fields can be left unfilled.

Once each of the field is filled, click ‘Continue’.


Step 3: Creating a trigger for the tag

Choose a user-action or a trigger which should fire the tag. It can simply be a click, a form submission, a download, a video view, and every other action that can be taken on a website.

When you choose a trigger, let’s say ‘Click’, you will be asked either to select one from existing ‘Click’ triggers or create a new one. You can do anything based on your preference. Once done, hit ‘Continue’


Step 4: Publish

Now, you already have a lot at your disposal.

  1. A new Google Analytics tag for tracking your specific event
  2. Have the parameters corresponding to that event entered
  3. A trigger which will fire that action

Before you proceed, make sure you don’t skip ‘Preview and ‘Debug’ in the Preview sub-menu. The idea is to make sure everything is working the way you had wanted.

Once you are certain about the functionality, hit ‘Publish’. And there you have it… an event tracking tag using Google Tag Manager.

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