How To Setup Data Layer For Server Side Container

One of the myths to server side tagging is that you no longer need a data layer since everything happens in the server.

This is not the case.

It is highly recommended that a data layer is used to normalize your eCommerce data collection and allow for easy pass-thru tagging in your server side container.

In this guide you’ll learn how to configure a proper data layer on your Shopify store.

Install Data Layer

Why do you need a data layer on your store for server side tagging?

  • To leverage standard events like product views, add to carts, purchases, etc in your server side tags
  • To utilize variables that your marketing tags need in conversion events – like revenue, order ID, SKU
  • To simplify the process of adding new marketing tags in the future (i.e. no code changes in theme or apps to install).

Options to Install Data Layer:

  1. The “DIY” Free Option: this open source data layer was created 3 years ago and can be modified for use today (click here to view). If you are a GTM beginner then it might be a bit technical to follow and implement (so could take a while). But it is a free option that might work fine for most use cases. You’ll need to create the tags, triggers, and variables in GTM to match this.
  2. Install the GTM Suite app from Elevar. This automates the setup of the data layer to Google’s specs. Plus you’ll have advanced customer data, consent management, advanced matching data, and all of the tags/triggers/variables pre-created for GTM. You can view on the app store here or sign up for a plan to get started with the data layer + server side tagging here.

Once you’ve completed the installation of the data layer on your store then this step is complete.

Next up – send data from your website to your server side container.

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