New Interface for Google Tag Manager

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Jay Dillon

Director of Strategy and Creative at Inbound Experts
Jay is a digital marketer and producer whose creative and technical skills have developed digital brand strategies and sales campaigns using a range of complex internet applications from stand-alone websites through to Facebook API integrations.
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RIP old interface of Google Tag Manager, you left us on June 1, 2015. As early adopters roll their eyes, we present this article to welcome GTM V2 to provide an informative transition between the old and new interfaces (really for those who held off on migrating to V2). If you are fairly new to GTM, you’ll be able to visualise the basic differences and learn the renamed terminology.

Changes & Improvements

Changes to terminology (renaming of some items):

Rules have been renamed Triggers

Macros have been renamed Variables

Features that work differently in V2:

There is now a new category of variables referred to as build-in variables. These variables are designed to handle very basic common types of needs to be enabled by the user. Read more on this.

Every trigger now has an associated event.

The auto-event listener tags are no longer required. Simply create a trigger of type Click to fire a tag based on a click. It’s that simple. What’s great about V2 is that Event Listeners, unlike the old version that required both a Listener tag and firing Rule, can now be accomplished with a single Trigger.

API Gloriousness:

What’s great is that Google has also launched an API. The GTM API provides access to GTM’s configuration data for an authorised user, allowing this user to manage accounts, containers, tags, triggers (rules), variables (macros) and user permissions. With Web APIs you can use GTM to manage tags on your sites (tracking Java tags). Without having to edit your site code, you can add and update AdWords and Google Analytics via the GTM user interface. Refer to Google’s developer page for more information.

Visual Changes

As you can see and compare below, V2 has a more modern look that reflects Google’s apps, specifically Drive. V2 has an Admin panel similar to Google Analytics and a new dashboard-style Overview screen. Let’s not forget the step-by-step configuration screens for triggers and variables, as well as tags:

Google Tag Manager V1

Google Tag Manager V1


Google Tag Manager V2

Google Tag Manager V2


June 1, 2015 was the last day for all V1 users because as of that date, all accounts were automatically migrated to the new interface. Although it can be a little disorienting at first, especially for those who are used to V1, GTM users can rest assured that their container setups have remained intact after this automatic migration (unless you’ve already acted on the opt-in migration to V2, available since March 2015).

As with most Google updates, this new colourful interface is designed to make user experience easier and more intuitive with GTM. Now that everyone is on V2, stay tuned for articles on the latest GTM tips.

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