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Multi Domain GTM Server Side Tracking

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With the increasing reliance on Web analytics, Server Side Tracking (SST) has become a hot topic in the world of digital marketing. But what about when you have multiple domains? Can one SST configuration handle multiple Web sites? Let’s dive deeper into the world of Multi Domain GTM Server Side Tracking.

Why one sGTM for multiple domains

  • Localization: Different domains for different languages.
  • Landing pages: You have several landing pages on separate domains that redirect you to a main site
  • Similar niche: Different websites within the same niche can benefit from the same tracking features.

Challenges in using one sGTM for multiple domains

While using one Server Google Tag Manager for multiple websites can save costs, it also comes with challenges. One is the complexity it brings, especially the increased number of tags and triggers.

In addition, as you add more Web sites, the number of sGTM elements may grow exponentially, perhaps reaching the limits of the server-side GTM container.

Therefore, it is important to configure the sGTM debugger. This helps diagnose problems and make sure everything is working properly.

TAGGRS Multi Domain Tool

TAGGRS Multi Domain Tool allows users to add and validate different subdomains for Server Side Tracking. Setting up the TAGGRS Multi Domain consists of adding and validating subdomains in the TAGGRS dashboard. Next, the necessary variables and settings must be added to the Web and Server Container in GTM.

When TAGGRS Multi Domain Tool does use:

  • Multiple separate domains e.g. taggrs.com / taggrs.de / taggrs.fr.

When not to use TAGGRS Multi Domain Tool:

  • If you work within a single domain that uses geographic or language-specific subpaths, such as taggrs.co.uk/de or taggrs.co.uk/en. In these cases, tracking within the same domain is sufficient.
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TAGGRS Multi Domain setup

1. Add your Subdomain(s) to TAGGRS.

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You get to the TAGGRS Multi Domain Tool, by going to Optimize –> Multi Domain. Then insert the subdomains in question here. You add your current subdomain to this as well which can be found in your dashboard at Tagging server URL. In this case, we are going to add our (fictitious) German and English websites. Additional subdomains have been created for this purpose.

2. Validate Subdomain(s).

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Next, make sure the subdomains are validated just like your current subdomain. You do this by adding DNS Records to your hosting provider.

3. Create New Variable Google Tag Manager (Web Container)

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Next, we move to the Google Tag Manager Web Container (Client Side). We are going to create a new variable. Go to Variables and click New.

4. Variable Configuration – Tracking Domain (Web Container).

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Name the variable, for example Tracking Domain and under Variable Configuration choose Lookup Table.

5. Set Variable (Web Container).

set up tracking domain variable gtm web container

Under Input Variable, choose Page Hostname (listed under Choose in-built Variable).

6. Add subdomain(s) to Variable (Web Container).

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Next, add the subdomain(s) to the Input by clicking +Add Row.

7. Customize GA4 Configuration Tag (Web Container).

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Go to Tags –> GA4 Configuration Tag and make sure to add server_container_url under Configuration parameter and add the created Variable under Value .

8. Go to your Server Side Container (Server Container).

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The section in the Web Container is ready. We are now going to work in the Server Container.

9. Container Settings (Server Container)

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Go to the Admin and click Container Settings.

10. Add subdomain(s) to Container Settings (Server Container).

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When you get to the Container Settings add all your created subdomains. Put your container live and TAGGRS Multi Domain is up and running!

Fact: Google Tag Manager has a limit of 20 subdomains you can add.

Debug mode Multi Domain

When Administering Multi Domain setup, it can be challenging to monitor each domain individually. Fortunately, Multi Domain debug mode allows you to select specific domains and test them separately. This ensures that every tag, trigger and variable functions correctly for all domains involved.

Within your Server Container, click Preview. Next, choose the domain you want to debug.

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Conclusion

Server Side Tracking is becoming increasingly popular, and the ability to track multiple domains is a valuable tool. However, as with everything, it comes with its own set of challenges.

For those who have never worked with SST before, it can be challenging. If you need help setting up, our team of experts is ready to help.

Forget about putting your edits live!

Google Tag Manager Multi Domain FAQ

Is there a limit for using Multi Domain?

The limit for Multi Domain is 20. This restriction has been established by Google Tag Manager.

When I have multiple websites with multiple tag manager containers, do I need to create a separate container for each domain on TAGGRS?

If you have multiple tag managers for multiple websites, you need to create a new container within TAGGRS for each of these domains. TAGGRS Multi Domain is intended for companies that have multiple domains in 1 Google Tag Manager container. When you have this you only need to set up 1 container.


About the author

Ate Keurentjes

Ate Keurentjes

Server Side Tracking Specialist at TAGGRS

Ate Keurentjes is a Server Side Tracking specialist at TAGGRS. He has experience with various Google Tag Manager concepts. Keurentjes has been editing and writing about the latest developments and trends in data collection / Server side tracking since 2023.

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