Stuck with Google Tag Manager? Relax, we’ve all been there. Not even once. Not even ten or twenty times. It’s not easy to master GTM and if you are determined to do that, many questions will definitely arise in the process.

Luckily, there is a whole bunch of ways how you can get Google Tag Manager help and resolve your GTM issues.

All options are listed in no particular order. Additionally, in the 2nd half of this guide, I’ll give you tips how to be more cooperative and improve the process of getting a quicker GTM help. It’s a two-player game where both parties are equally responsible for solving issues.

Places where you can get Google Tag Manager help

#1. Google+ Community. This was the place where I started my journey. Back in the day, it was really active and helpful community. Even though I still recommend joining it (because you really CAN get help there), IMHO, it’s not the same as it was before: fewer posts are being published now and the entire community does not feel that much engaged anymore.

In fact, it’s not growing very fast either. Why? Spoiler alert! It’s on Google Plus. Every time during my live GTM workshops, when I recommend joining G+ community, students give that weird look saying Dude…Really? Google Plus? It’s 2018.

These were the main reasons why I started a new Google Tag Manager Community, but this time on Facebook.

Recommended: #2. Google Tag Manager Community on Facebook. This is a 2.0 version of GTM community started in January 2018. A constantly growing, active, engaged, and really helpful community. Yeah, I know that parents love their child more than anything but I swear it’s really good. I’m so proud that there are so many awesome people in the community who are willing to help each other and share new ideas.

If you haven’t yet, join us. We have Simo Ahava, Stéphane Hamel, Tamás Geiger (the creator of GTM4WP), Julian (from MeasureSchool), and many others.

Sorry, if I sound too pushy, but this community genuinely great. So don’t hesitate and join.

#3. GTM Product Forums. Another place where you can get answers, although I wasn’t a very frequent guest there (and I’m still not). But that does not mean that you cannot get answers there. Simo is participating there a lot (but he’s very active pretty much everywhere he can 🙂 ).

#4. Stack Overflow. This place is pretty solid to get answers, especially those who are related to a more technical side, like JavaScript, jQuery, etc.

#5. Comments under blog posts. Many people have already asked for Google Tag Manager help here, in the comments section (and successfully got it). So if you find a blog post related to your issue but, unfortunately, it did not answer your particular question, feel free to ask by posting a comment.

But there is one rule: a comment MUST be related to the blog post’s content. It’s really annoying when somebody out of the blue just asks a random question like “why my event tracking is not working?”.

FYI, other commenters (might) get notifications about new comments, so please respect them and the owner on the blog.

Analyticsmania.com isn’t the only place where you can ask questions. You can also do that on simoahava.com, lunametrics.com, and other GTM/GA related blogs.

#6. Hire someone. Look for professionals among Google Certified Partners or in the aforementioned communities. There is also Upwork where you can look for freelancers.

#7. Captain Obvious recommends: Don’t give up and keep googlin’. Google Search (sorry, Bing) is your most powerful tool that you should definitely take advantage of. Finding the answer, solving the issue by yourself and reaching that “Aha!” moment is rewarding and gives you much more experience because you will definitely learn more things on the way (at least that’s how I feel).

Plus, I promise that over the time you’ll get better at “asking Google the right questions” so that you could get your answers much quicker.

 

Wall of Shame

There are also some places where I recommend not wasting your time: Reddit GTM community and GTM LinkedIn community. Both communities are pretty much dead or will become ones soon.

 

How to properly ask for Google Tag Manager help?

#1. Describe the issue and steps how to reproduce it

Saying “Hey, GTM tracking is not working” isn’t helping anyone and is actually really annoying. You need to understand that both parties (you and your possible savior) are aiming for the same goal – solving an issue. So you both are equally responsible for reaching that.

Writing vague statements is just a form of stalling and wasting the time of both parties. The most optimal way is to clearly describe what is not working and steps how to reproduce the issue.

How NOT to describe what is the problem:

  • GTM is not working
  • My events are not tracked

See where the problem? There are millions of places where to start checking/debugging your issue, therefore, you need to help narrow down the field of search. This is a two-player-game.

How to PROPERLY describe what is the problem:

  • My link click events are not displayed in Google Analytics real-time reports. A tag in GTM fires, but don’t see the event in GA real-time reports“.

Now that’s much better. First of all, “events” are narrowed down to link clicks. Next, since the events are not appearing in the RT reports, the problem is usually related either to Google Analytics settings or GA Event Tag Settings (in GTM). In fact, I have a guide which explains it.

This is a good first step toward getting help quicker. But your job is not done yet because the issue is still pretty broad so your next step would be to clearly describe steps how to reproduce the issue.

Remember, if you’re asking for help on communities and someone is willing to help you for free, they’re spending their own time. So please, be kind and respect their effort. Help them help you.

As for reproducing steps, here are some valuable pieces of information that you should mention up front:

  • The URL of the page where your issue occurs. Not just domain of the page (example.com), but the actual page address (example.com/page/this-is-the-page). If possible, this one is a must. It will speed up the
  • If there are several elements on that page and only one causes the problem, mention that exact page element.
  • If the issue occurs only in a particular sequence, describe every step of that sequence. For example, “scroll there, click that, then wait, click another link“.

Sometimes (especially for GTM beginners) it’s difficult to determine which information should be provided, which is important and which is useless. In that case, say something like this:

Hey, I’ve got an issue with event tracking with GTM. My link click events are not displayed in Google Analytics Real-time reports. The GA event tag fires in GTM Preview mode but no event is visible in RT reports.

The URL of the page that I’m working on is https://www.example.com/this-page.

I’m still a beginner so I’m not sure what additional information would be useful for you in order to solve my issue. Please let me know and I’ll provide it to you asap.

Thank you in advance!

If you do not want to publicly disclose a URL of the page, that’s fine. Then mention that you cannot publicly paste the URL but you are willing to do that via Private/Direct Message or email.

 

#2. Always provide Screenshots or videos

Another very important thing you need to provide asap is visual content which can help your savior identify possible issues. I’m talking about screenshots or videos (screen recordings). Your problem will be solved much faster if you provide screenshots of:

  • Tag settings.
    Tag settings

 

  • A trigger which fires the tag.
    Trigger Settings

 

  • Preview and debug mode. Expand it by dragging its top border to the top of the screen (the more it displays, the better):
    • If particular variables are related to the issue, click the event (e.g. gtm.linkClick) in the GTM Preview and Debug Console take a screenshot of Variables tab where those related variables are visible.
      Variables Tab of GTM Preview mode
    • It’s also useful to have a screenshot of the Data Layer tab.
      Data Layer Tab in GTM Preview and Debug mode

 

#3. Share a link to Preview mode (or give a limited access if a person is trustworthy)

If you’re super new to Google Tag Manager’s preview mode, here’s a guide that you should definitely read first. When you enable preview mode in GTM, an orange banner appears in your Google Tag Manager interface. This means that the Preview console will be visible only to you and you will be able to see/test even unpublished changes.

However, you may share also your preview with others using the share preview feature. Click Share Preview in the preview notification banner.

Share Google tag manager debug preview

This brings up a dialog box where you can copy a URL to send to someone else. Enter the website domain (you are currently working on).

Share preview in GTM

Copy this generated URL and send it to the person who is willing to help you with the issue. The preview URL will take the user to a landing page where he/she will be informed that his/her browser has been enabled for preview mode. There will also be a link on the landing page to disable preview mode for that browser.

Sharing the preview link is pretty safe. A volunteer will not be able to do any changes to your GTM container or any tags. He/she will only be able to see what tags fire (or not), what are their settings/triggers, and variables.

If you are sure that a helping person is trustworthy (or you have hired him/her), you can also give him limited access to your GTM container. Go to GTM Admin > Choose a container > User Management.

Container User Management

Click NEW, enter person’s email address and give him/her Edit access. This permission allows your savior to edit/add/remove your tags/triggers/variables, but doesn’t allow to publish those changes live to your visitors. So even if that person does something wrong, your traffic/visitors/website will not be affected + you can always revert the container to the previous version.

Pro tip: It’s always a good thing to create a new container version right before you share a limited access to an outsider. Imagine this like a “Saved checkpoint” in a video game. If something goes wrong, you will be able to start from the previous version once again.

 

How and where to get Google Tag Manager Help: Conclusion

If you feel that learning GTM isn’t very easy, you’re right. It’s not. Just like any other complex tool, it has its learning curve. Nevertheless, the internet is full of places where you can get Google Tag Manager help and have someone to help you solve issues.

In this blog post, I’ve listed several options, where you can start looking for Google Tag Manager help (P.S. If you know more, please let me know and I’ll update the list):

Another important thing you should keep in mind: be as detailed as possible. Provide a person (who’s willing to help you) as many details as you can. Here’s a handy list you should follow:

  • Clearly describe the issue (what is not working)
  • Explain how to reproduce the issue (step by step)
  • Provide a URL of the page that you’re working on. If you cannot disclose it, tell in the message that you’ll send the URL via private message or email.
  • Provide a link to the shared GTM Preview and Debug mode
  • Attach screenshots/screen recordings
  • If remove help isn’t working out and a person is trusworthy, provide him/her an access to edit the container. Your saviour will not be able to publish changes live, so you’re safe.
Julius Fed (Fedorovicius)

Head of Developer Operations at Omnisend. I am highly interested in Google Tag Manager, Google Analytics, Adwords, Email marketing, Email Deliverability, Digital Marketing in general. You can follow me on Twitter or Linkedin.