How to Set Up Google Ads Remarketing & Conversion Tags via Google Tag Manager

Configure Google Ads Remarketing & Conversion Tags

Configure Google Ads Remarketing & Conversion Tags

See how to enable Google Ads audience source data collection via Google Tag Manager

After you've imported our GTM data layer containers for Shopify, you'll have Google Ads tags that enable:

  1. Dynamic product remarketing
  2. Conversion tracking

Here's an example of the tags that come with our base container implementations:

Step 1: Remarketing Tags

If you plan to enable Google Ads remarketing data collection via GTM then follow these steps:

Go to Tools > Audience Manager:

Click on "Your data sources" in the left nav. Then go to Google Ads tag > Details:

Then copy the value shown here:

And finally In GTM > Variables > User-Defined Variables, update the Update After Elevar Import - Google Ads - Conversion ID* Variable.

Please ensure your constant is something like 123456789 (no dashes in-between the #'s and no AW in front)

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Please make sure that you're using the correct variable to match the Product IDs in your Google Merchant Center: You can learn more about this in step 5 below.

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We have SKU set in all tags by default when you import, but you can change this to product ID, variant ID, or other variations.

Step 2: Implement Google Ads Purchase Conversion Tracking

Here is the Google Ads Transaction tag that needs your specific Google Ads Conversion Label updated:

Here is where you can find this in Google Ads:

Go to "Conversions" and either create a new conversion or go to your existing purchase conversion action.

Once you click into the purchase conversion and scroll down to the tag setup then you'll see the conversion label similar to what's shown in the image above.

Then just copy and paste the conversion label to the above into the Google Ads Conversion Tag in GTM.

That's it!

Once you begin testing with GTM in preview mode, you should see tags that fire on the front end of your site with data populating. Here is a product pageview example:

We show how to validate conversion data in Google Ads in step 6 below.

Step 3: Remove Potential Duplicate Tracking & Publish

If you previously had Google Ads scripts/app or remarketing tags setup then you will need to remove these to prevent duplicate tags from firing.

We typically see Google Ads implemented in a few different ways:

Hard-coded in the Shopify theme
Utilizing the native Google Shopping App (which doesn't support multi-currency among other issues)
Older tags created in GTM accounts
It's best to check for yourself to be safe.

When all is good then publish your tags in GTM

Step 4: Validate Remarketing Data Is Collecting

There are two requirements to validate that remarketing tags exist and are sending data:

  1. Use the Google Tag Assistant across major pages to confirm data is sent:
  • Home, collection, product, cart, checkout, purchase
  1. View Google Ads tag source data inside of Google Ads account

Below are examples of what valid Google Remarketing Tags look like in Google Tag Assistant.

Example using Elevar GTM Suite

Example using old, non-Elevar GTM parameters (but still work)

You will not be able to validate if the id or ecomm_prodid are the right values (i.e. SKU, product ID) from the GA tag assistant. This must be done inside Google Ads.

How to validate remarketing tag data inside of Google Ads:

Go to Google Ads > Tools > Shared Library > Audience Manager and you should see Google Ads and Google Analytics data sources. If you don't see Google Ads (or it's 0) then the tag is not collecting data.

From here you should get a general sense of health.

Here is an example of an account with errors (see the 2 issues)

Here is an example without errors

Step 5: Validate Product Parameter Data

If your account has errors then you'll see the details of these errors on the next screen after clicking details. The majority of the time it's due to product ID in tag doesn't match product ID in merchant center.

Example of ID mismatch warnings:

If there are mismatch warnings like this then you need to update the tags to send the right product ID. It will be easier to change this vs changing the merchant center IDs.

Your steps to do this are:

  • Inside Google Ads go to Overview (top left) > Product Groups > then click on any product which will bring up a screen where you can view the product ID

See the product image example in Google Ads:

  • If you are unsure if it's SKU, product ID, or variant ID then go to the product URL in browser and add .json to the URL. Then input the value from Google Ads and search for it in browser. Voila.

Things to watch out for when matching IDs:

  • Casing. Both can send SKU but tag has a different case than product.
  • Internationalization for product feeds in different countries

What Good Elevar Parameter Data Looks Like

Here is an example of parameter data that comes through in our remarketing tags

At the minimum we should be sending:

  • id or ecomm_prodid
  • ecomm_pagetype or similar
  • value or ecomm_totalvalue or similar

You can click into the parameters to view more details on them and see what is being sent.

These parameters are pre-configured in GTM Suite tags. If you are using another method - like hard coding in theme or Google Shopping App - then they might be slightly different.

Step 6: Validate Conversion Data

At the minimum every Elevar customer that signs up for a marketing tag audit with us should have the following:

  1. Purchase conversions
  2. Non-purchase conversions for product view, add to cart, initiate checkout
    The implementation can vary. Some might want to keep the conversion tag in Shopify thank you scripts, or GTM, or implemented another way. Our initial goal is to validate it's accurate.

It will never match GA conversions. Read this article understand why if you are unsure.

Here is an example of all conversions configured properly:

A few callouts:

  • Notice the "include in conversions" is only set to yes on the purchase (this is hardly ever set to yes on other conversions)
  • Repeat rate is near 1 for purchases which means there are not duplicates. If there were then this would be closer to 2.
  • To validate I typically pick a 7 day period in Google Ads (you can change date in top right) and then compare to Google Ads report in GA. These should be close (see above for caveat on close πŸ™‚).
    Some brands might have conversions mapped directly from Google Analytics revenue.

In general our recommendation is to always have a Google Ads conversion tag running even if in parallel to the GA import.

But they should never both be enabled as "Yes" in include in conversions otherwise they will inflate reports.

Here's an example of a product view conversion being set as Yes and causing a 911 email after major spike in conversions (the red line graph):

Never change Google Ads settings on existing conversions without your marketing team being aware of this change.

Questions? Let us know!