Try to contain your excitement.
With the amount of data that businesses are collecting expected to continue growing - estimated at a further 800% over the next few years - it’s really time to start taking tag management seriously.
In any large enterprise website there could be over 30 tags running at any one time. When a page loads, these tags get fired off - one by one by one. If it feels slow just saying it out loud, imagine how much it could be slowing down your site? Now, we’re not one to toot our own horn but Opentag powers two of the top three fastest sites in Europe - Shop Direct Group and Staples - read all about it here.
By consolidating your tags into a single tag management system you can start to improve your site’s performance - by using Container Tag, you can exponentially decrease your load time by taking advantage of the asynchronous loading feature. Remember: every second saved can boost pageviews, conversion rates and improve your site's search engine visibility.
Let’s talk Russian. Russian dolls, that is.
Container Tag lets you group third party technologies into one or more containers. Within each container, you are then able to set rules around which tags fire on specific pages. For sites with lots of tags, this system dramatically speeds up page load times as the site effectively only loads the container, rather than lots of individual tags.
Let’s try and visualize it.
Pretend that each of these tags are little Russian dolls and that you wanted to give these dolls to your good friend, Jane. Each of the dolls fit into its corresponding doll, obeying its dependencies and load order, to finally reside in one final container doll. Simple right? Now, here’s the beauty of Opentag: say you have several container dolls to give to Jane, Container Tag means that each of your smaller dolls, ie. your tags, are easily identifiable within the container and can be moved, copied, and edited without ruining your container organization.
Creating and committing your first container
It’s super easy to create a new container. We’ve got a giant green button calling your name! Once you’ve selected the ‘+ Create a container’ button towards the top of the interface, a lightbox will appear prompting you to name your container. Once you’ve chosen a suitably awesome name, hit the final ‘Create Container’ button to see your new container within the dashboard.
A little note on naming your containers: we recommend that you name your containers according to which site or environment they are implemented in. This is so you can easily manage and identify them at a later stage - naming them Container 1, Container 2, Container 3 can get a tad confusing once you hit the double digits! Try instead: UK Site or Product Conversion Container.
Committing your container is easy within the interface. We’ve created two quick buttons that you can commit from, a overview button (no. 1) and individual container button (no. 2). If you decide to not commit the new changes, just hit ‘Undo Changes’ next to the Commit button (no. 2). When you’re ready to commit, a lighbox will appear within the dashboard prompting you to type ‘COMMIT’. This is the final step before pushing your container live - take the time here to make sure you’re 100% certain and only then hit the Submit button.
Opentag was designed with flexibility in mind so for our Enterprise customers, we’ve enabled a feature that allows you to host your containers on a custom CDN host! This means you can take advantage of the convenience of a tag management system whilst still delivering tags through your own network. When committing your container, instead of placing the usual tag on your page, merely point your CDN to the direct URL - for a full how to and more information then please read our FAQ!
Copying scripts to multiple containers
Container Tag becomes particularly useful when you have multiple domains - perhaps you have several different country domains for each of version of your website. We recommend that you create one container for every domain. So for example: one for your US site (.com), one for your UK site (.co.uk), and another for your French site (.fr). You can read more about multiple domain handling in this FAQ article.
Using a nifty little feature ‘copy scripts to’, you can set up your script within one container and once you find it functioning and successful, you can replicate it within your other domains. Simply hit the ‘Configure’ button within the dashboard and open the dropdown menu - you’ll find ‘copy scripts to’ as well as a host of others which you can familiarize yourself with before we touch on them throughout this onboarding process.
Async: Loading tags asynchronously is one of Container Tag’s great features. It speeds up your site by removing the need for a slow steady stream of script loading. You can check and uncheck this box at any time.
Active: Marking or unmarking this checkbox simply activates or deactivates your script within the container. You can also deactivate your script from the main dashboard by selecting the cog icon of the particular script and choosing ‘Deactivate’ from the dropdown.
Dedupe: You will need to check ‘Dedupe’ to initiate our CPA De-duplication tool. We will cover this in future tutorials but if you’re interested in more information, have a read of our FAQ about it.
For example, say you have a script that sets up all the variables that your remaining scripts need to function - we wouldn’t want those remaining scripts to start loading without the variables! This is where script dependency comes in handy. If you set your remaining scripts to be dependant upon the initial variable setup script then your tags fire and function to your heart’s content.
Setting your script dependencies is incredibly simple thanks to the friendly user interface. Start by opening your main script, ie. the tag that will have scripts dependant upon it, and scroll to the Advanced Features dropdown. Moving into the ‘Dependencies’ tab, you should then select your dependant scripts. You can keep clicking on the chevrons, moving them back and forth until you’re satisfied with your dependencies. Super easy, super quick, and super friendly!
Don’t be lagging with your tagging!
We hope you found this look into Container Tag useful - it’s the first of our four pillars of Opentag and it’s only going to get better. We’ve got a great on-demand webinar, featuring our legendary Front End Lead (who may refer to Opentag as his baby at some point), that you can watch and follow to learn more about Container Tag and other Opentag features.