How to Use TagDebugger™

May 22, 2014 Brad Perry

a man leans back with his feet up on his desk with a lake in the backgroundJavaScript tag debugging can be a huge bummer, right? That’s why we created TagDebugger™. It’s a free plugin for Google Chrome that shows what tags are firing on whatever page you’re currently looking at. It even shows how quickly the tag is loading and what variable content is being passed.

Tag Debugging Made Easy

Using the ObservePoint TagDebugger™ is simple. Here’s how to install and use this freemium tool:

Install, Configure and Open TagDebugger™ in Chrome

  1. Install the TagDebugger™ .
  2. Ensure the extension is enabled by selecting the upright ellipses in the top right of the browser, then More Tools -> Extension. Verify the ObservePoint TagDebugger™ is enabled. It should be enabled by default.
  3. Open the Chrome Developer Tools. On Windows and Linux, press Control-Shift-i. On Mac, press
    Command-Option-i.
  4. Select the ObservePoint panel in the top bar of Developer tools. If this panel is not visible, click on the double arrow and then click on “ObservePoint” in the drop-down.
  5. Refresh the page. When you refresh or navigate to a new page, you will see what tags are firing, along with other valuable information, as outlined below.

Use TagDebugger™

TagDebugger™ provides you with some of the most relevant information about your marketing tags, including:

Tag Name / Path: This is the name ObservePoint uses to uniquely identify each vendor and tagging technology. The path is the tag request up to the query string.

Account: The name of this value varies from vendor to vendor. This is the Adobe Analytics report suite, Google Analytics profile, Webtrends DCSID, etc. Within ObservePoint we call them accounts.

Category: ObservePoint’s classification of the kind of tag listed. Categories include analytics, advertising, tag management, video, voice of consumer, split testing, eCommerce and lead tracking. For a complete list of all tags we support please visit our supported tag vendors.

Status: The network status code of the tag request. Most should be status 200 (OK).

Request / Response Size: Request is the amount of data sent to the vendor’s collection servers. Response is the data sent back to your web browser by the vendor.

Total Time / Latency: Total time is measured from the initial request for the tag to time it is fully loaded. Latency is the time it takes from the initial request to the first response from the vendor.

Use this information to identify what tags are firing on a page-by-page basis, and determining if they are operating properly.

TagDebugger™ has received great reviews. “This is a great tool for verifying that my analytics tags are loaded and firing properly,” said one reviewer.  “Being able to see how the variables are set and what’s being sent to the analytics provider (Google Analytics in my case) is really helpful.”

Yeah, we agree. We use it all the time here. It’s just too handy.

What’s Next?

The only thing TagDebugger™ isn’t great if you want to perform a tag audit across an entire site. It’s just too time-consuming to manually document everything that your tags are doing across your website. Wouldn’t it be great to crawl the site and build a tag database? Yeah, it would.

<whispers in ear> check out our  free mini-audit  </whispers>

Thank us later.

 

 

 

About the Author

Brad Perry

Brad Perry has been Director of Demand Generation at ObservePoint since June 2015. He is, in his own words, “unhealthily addicted to driving marketing success” and has demonstrated his unrelenting passion for marketing in various verticals. His areas of expertise include demand generation, marketing operations & system design, marketing automation, email campaign management, content strategy, multi-stage lead nurturing and website optimization.

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