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IAB Releases Report on Best Practices for Website Tagging

  |  November 29, 2012   |  Comments

The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) has released its "Site Tagging Best Practices" report for public comment.

The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) has released its "Site Tagging Best Practices" report for public comment.

The IAB's report outlines what the firm believes are the best practices for tagging website data for marketing purposes. The practices lay out how marketers can best avoid potential tagging pitfalls and develop better operation procedures for website tagging.

"Tagging is a foundational element of the heavily data-driven interactive advertising ecosystem without which it would not continue to thrive," said IAB VP of Advertising Technology Steve Sullivan.

"To better meet the needs of publishers, advertisers, marketers and consumers, we must not only take account of the ongoing value of site tagging, but more fully understand the operational challenge presented by site tagging's increasingly prolific use."

Tagging is when someone puts snippets of JavaScript code into a website's pages' HTML. Each view of a tagged object results in data collection. Tags are designed to provide useful insights into a consumer's web habits.

The IAB created its site tagging best practices as a way to educate "taggers" on ways to reduce challenges and risks that come along with site tagging. The firm says that without proper systems in place tagging can cause issues like data leakages, operational slow-downs, consumer experience problems, and privacy hurdles.

The report covers best practices for handling workflow planning, implementation, and maintenance. Along with tips to handle performance, data capture, data transfer, and privacy needs.

Among the practices recommended in the report, the IAB points out that firms should be fully transparent about how they use the data collected through tags. The IAB says that each company that collects data through a tag should be clearly identified and documented.

"Without question, site tagging has helped to revolutionize digital advertising from a system of basic ad serving to an extremely sophisticated and complex marketing system -one that is of immense importance to our industry," said senior vice president of partner development at BrightTag, and co-chair of the IAB site tagging task force Todd Chu.

"By adhering to fundamental best practices around data capture and transfer, all digital marketing stakeholders will benefit along with the customers interacting with their sites."

The IAB's full list of best practices for website tagging can be found here. The practices will be open for public comment until January 4, 2013.

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