Are You Using Tags?

Lauren Sytsma's picture
Lauren Sytsma
Lauren Sytsma wrote:

Marketers are working in an era where much of what they do is digital marketing.  The capabilities for marketers to create stunning digital experiences and track a visitors journey through a website were unheard of less than a decade ago. 

The increasing sophistication of digital marketing is underpinned by a technology component that many marketers remain ignorant of: the tag.  The importance and impact of tags is such that marketers need a better understanding of them so they can manage them more effectively.

Definition: a tag is a section (typically referred to as a “snippet”) of JavaScript code that is embedded in an HTML web page.  Tags are sometimes also single pixels that are small and transparent, and therefore visually undetectable on an HTML web page.

Tags are used to transmit information to external applications about visits to the web page on which the tags are embedded.

A few examples of external applications that rely on tags:

  • Analytics
  • Pay-per-click ad tracking
  • Testing
  • Personalization
  • Marketing automation


When a web page visitor’s browser loads a web page containing tags, those tags are activated.  They gather the information they were developed to collect, then transmit it to the external application those tags support.

Examples of how tags enable digital marketing:

  • When marketers send HTML email blasts where each message has a personalized salutation (e.g. “Dear Fred”), tags are in use. 
  • Tags drive the personalization of web pages, dynamically detecting a new or returning visitor, then serving up content specific to that visitor. 
  • Analytics are made possible through the use of tags
  • The wonderfully rich set of information marketing automation systems provide is also tag-driven. 
  • The growing trend toward marketing attribution is certainly tag-dependent


There are many ways that tags enable function that is critical to marketing’s success; these are but a few of the more recognizable examples.  It suffices to say that tags are important and have much to do with the creation of rich, digital experiences.

Are you using tags to their full potential?

To learn more about tags, Click Here to download our Tag Management Best Practices How-to-Guide

Vote up!
Vote down!
+1 vote
Resource Reference 
Tag Management Best Practices

This How-­To Guide will explain tags, tag management, how tags are used, why it is important to manage them and concludes with considerations for determining if you need a tag management solution.