Over the past 6-8 months I’ve seen so many tutorials on how to do nifty tricks in tag management systems.
Reformat your URL with a simple JS snippet!
Dynamically grab menu text with jQuery!
Customize your search result query string!
Tag management systems can do all of this (and more), but before we implement tags we’re missing a key step: thinking. Is using your tag management system really the best way to rewrite URL’s that you’re passing into Google Analytics or should you just use an advanced filter? Do you need to write jQuery to get the text() parameter or can you just grab the innerHTML attribute? I get that it’s easy and it’s quick, but it’s not always the right way to approach the problem (see: golden hammer).
The moral of the story is that while it is easy, fun, and convenient to use custom code in a TMS to make your data look pretty – it isn’t always the best solution. Use custom coding as a LAST RESORT and you’ll save yourself from headaches in the future.