Create custom tags for Ad Platforms in GTM

1. Click on Tags on your GTM dashboard, then click on New.

The New button should prompt a pop-up with a list of built-in tags.

2. Scroll the list of built-in tags to find Custom HTML under Custom section and click on it.

Ensure you check through the list of built-in tags to confirm if the platform you want is already built-in before choosing Custom HTML. The list is arranged alphabetically, so it is easy to scroll through. Always go for built-in tags if you have them because they are already optimized for Tag Manager, optimized for speed, and will have all the latest features you will need. Take this as a general rule.

3. Copy your script from your Ad platform and paste it in the HTML space provided.

For example, if your Ad Platform is Facebook, all you have to do is copy your Facebook Pixel code and paste it in the space. The essence of this script is to alert Facebook when someone is on your site. For starters, ensure the script is just as it is without any changes.

4. Set up the trigger by clicking on the triggering icon.

Triggers define the conditions that should be met for your tag to fire and send the hit information to your Ad platform. If you select the built-in All Pages trigger, the tag will fire on every single page view. For the Facebook example, the All pages trigger will alert Facebook every single time someone loads any page of your site. You can create your own trigger if you do not want to track all pages, or have other specific triggers. As an example, if you want to set up a Facebook or Google Ads checkout pixel, you should set up a trigger that checks for the page URL, to fire on thank-you pages only, or specific user actions that define a conversion on your website.

5. Click Save and rename the tag with the Ad Platform Initials and track type. Note that your track type is Page View.

All your tags will be listed alphabetically so, it is important you follow the naming conventions of using the Ad platform initials and track type for the name. For Facebook, you can give it a name like FB – Page View. When you set up multiple events for your Ad Platform, naming them with this convention will make them easy to find.

6. Test the new custom Ad tag by clicking Preview on your GTM dashboard. Reload your website and wait to see a tag manager pop-up.

All created tags MUST be TBVed, meaning Trusted But Verified. An Orange banner at the top of your screen indicates you are in preview mode. If you do not see the tag manager pop-up after reloading your site, you can tell something is wrong, and you may need to check if you missed any of the step above. Go through the pop-up, check the summary to see if it’s only the tag you set up that fired. Check further by clicking on the tag name to check if the details such as the Script, trigger and track type are exactly the way you set them up. Note that the code gtm.js is GTM’s way of indicating Page view. After confirming GTM is doing its job right, you should go to your Ad platform to confirm the hits were tracked properly.

7. Verify your tag on the ad platform you created a tag for.

Verification on your ad platform is an extra step to confirm the tag is working properly. For the Facebook example, you can use the Facebook Pixel Helper Chrome extension to verify if the tag is working as it should. The extension will show a green dot in front of your track type to indicate Facebook received the hit from GTM. The Facebook Pixel helper will also give you the details if there is any issue about your setup.

8. Publish your new tag in your GTM workflow by clicking Submit on the workspace, enter the name of the tag and click Publish.

It is necessary to publish your GTM container any time you modify tags or triggers, otherwise your changes will not be applied to your live website.