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What is JavaScript Tag vs Image Pixel?

Do you know how your marketing campaign is performing? Tags help your track each campaign based on many metrics. Tags are used for conversion tracking. Tags could be image pixels and JavaScript tags. Traditionally, tags were fired from the browser which were referred to as client-side tags. But, with browser and cookie restrictions and meeting legal compliance, tags are being launched from the server. This process is called server-side tagging. Now, this is becoming more prevalent and preferred.

If you need to track conversions, then you need to know which of these tags will help you track and under what circumstances. Depending on the tag that you choose to use for tracking conversions, the method also varies. So, this provides you with basic aspects that evaluate JavaScript tags vs Image Pixels.

In this article, let’s explore:

  • What is a JavaScript tag?
  • What is an Image Pixel?
  • What is a Postback URL?
  • How Magic Pixel’s server-side tag manager helps you use a hybrid model of implementing these tags?

JavaScript tags vs Image Pixels

JavaScript tag

A JavaScript tag is a code snippet that comes as a third-party tag. It can be used to change your page appearance, collect visitor information, replace images, and many other things. A third-party javascript is not recommended always. Before the cookieless world rose, websites allowed third-party trackers to run their javascript tags to perform many information tracking and analytics. Even before users and the international judiciary insisted upon privacy, allowing third-party JavaScripts to run on your website was not a recommended practice.

To run third-party JavaScript tags, you had to ensure that they are provided by a reliable company. Such tags should also be specific about if it serves exclusively your needs. JavaScript tags can also be used by third-party vendors for tag piggybacking. This threatens the security of the site owner and the privacy of the user.

Here is how a JavaScript tag looks like.

Javascript tag

Image pixel

An image pixel is a pixel URL. Image pixels are delivered to the confirmation page via an HTML image tag.

An image pixel is on the other hand is static. It can only collect and pass information. Where JavaScript cannot be loaded, image pixels can be used in browsers with disabled support for JavaScript. The best part is that image pixels can be extended to the use case of tracking conversions in email marketing too.

Using image pixels is the most preferred method to track conversions, especially for e-commerce websites.

Postback URLs

These are recommended for the cookie-less world. They do not depend on the user’s browser preferences as they are fired from the advertiser’s server. In this method, when a conversion occurs, then the advertiser fires a postback with a transaction ID or affiliate ID, as necessary. The merchant server can also store data for conversion.

Use of different tags with Magic Pixel

With Magic Pixel’s server-side tag manager, you can use the right type of tag necessary to collect information as well as preserve privacy compliance.

For e-commerce websites, which are used on mobile and web browsers that come with distinct cookie restrictions have to depend upon server-side tagging. In such a scenario, Magic Pixel allows the advertiser to use a combination of self-hosted tags as well as those hosted on our server. These include both image pixels and post-back links. The hybrid model of Magic Pixel also allows advertisers to fire JavaScript tags with a first-party context.