Stape: An Alternative to Google Cloud Platform (GCP) for Server GTM Hosting

May 20, 2024

Naturally, customers research different options when choosing a server-side tracking solution. Let’s see what a popular Stape alternative—Google Cloud Platform (GCP)—offers. We hope this comparison helps you decide which Google Tag Manager hosting works best.

Stape Vs. Google Cloud Plattform

Google Cloud Platform overview

Google Cloud Platform is arguably the top alternative customers consider. It is one of the most widely used platforms worldwide, trusted by countless users.

The platform offers various services, including computing, networking, storage, big data, machine learning, and management. This post will focus on the pros and cons of GCP's tagging server and Cloud Run.

Pros and cons of Google Cloud Platform hosting for server Google Tag Manager

Check out the advantages and disadvantages to consider when choosing to work with the GCP:

The default deployment of a GCP project with a single server is usually free but requires adding a credit card. You can have only one test GCP environment for one billing account. Also, you have to monitor the number of requests within the free tier limits.
Community. Google has extensive documentation and a large community, so you will likely find answers to most of your questions quickly.There is no free support. If you need support, you must pay a support fee + % of the money you spend on servers. Waiting to get to human support can be time-consuming and painstaking. 
It is highly scalable, automatically adjusting to traffic spikes without manual intervention. In other words, it can seamlessly handle large volumes of data and tags.Automatic scaling can cause an unexpected rise in expenses when traffic spikes unexpectedly. A case when GCP runs out of servers for sGTM in specific regions during high season (Black Friday, Christmas, etc.) is possible, and if it happens, the server can't be scaled, and server-side tagging stops working.
It offers extensive controls and customization of the system. Making the most of controls and customization features requires some technical expertise. You need to manually monitor, fix, and update the GCP settings in case of any issues.
Pay-as-you-go pricing model. This model can be beneficial for businesses with fluctuating traffic. It could be pricey for startups and small businesses. Billing is challenging for agencies since each client must have their own GCP project and billing. 
Security and compliance. Google provides a high level of security thanks to its extensive resources for maintaining global standards.Security breaches are not 100% preventable, even with Google.
If you need a custom DPA, service agreement, BAA, or any other documents, you can’t sign them with GCP.
If you want the data about your website visitors to remain within the EU, you won’t be able to achieve it with GCP. Though they have server locations in the EU, Google is a US-based company, and any data stored on the EU servers can be accessed by the US company.

As one of the top players, GCP has many benefits beyond the major ones mentioned above. As with any other service, some drawbacks are naturally present. However, the competition is strong. Let’s take a look at one alternative to Google Cloud Platform.

Stape overview

Stape is the easiest way to do server-side tracking. It reduces the technical barrier often associated with server-side tagging, making it understandable for marketers and business owners. Stape has the right tools to set up server-side tracking quickly and effectively. With Stape, you don’t have to worry about your coding and tech skills, as the service is meant for marketers and business owners rather than tech guys.

With Stape, you can stop worrying about third-party cookies and relying on client-side JavaScript. We automated everything possible to make server-side tagging clear and comprehensive, even if you have zero tech background.

Benefits of Stape hosting for Server Google Tag Manager

When you start working with Google Tag Manager, you can either keep hosting your server Google Tag Manager on the Google Cloud platform or move it to custom hosting. Hosting with Stape has a lot of advantages. Some things could be a drawback for you, so we will provide you with complete information so you can make an informed decision.

  • Pricing. Stape’s hosting is around five times cheaper than GCP. We created a pricing calculator where you can check our billing plans and choose one that best fits your budget and needs. There is also a free plan that does not require adding a credit card to your account. Paid plans start at $20.
  • Support. The support team is available Monday through Friday from 7 AM to 5 PM (UTC). We do our best to reply as soon as possible, and on weekdays, we always do so within 24 hours.
  • Server from EU (Scaleway cloud server provider). To be hosted in the EU, select EU on the registration.
  • No need to worry about server monitoring. We do that for you.
  • Ability to sign custom documents (Service agreement, DPA, BAA, etc.).
  • Transparent pricing. You pay for the subscription plan. The price is not based on usage, which can be unpredictable.
  • Security compliance. We are ISO 27001, SOC2, HIPPA certified, and GDPR-compliant.
  • Autoscaling. When our monitoring systems see spikes in traffic, we autoscale servers and add more CPU or memory.
  • Ability to bypass adblockers. Depending on the website industry, the average number of people with an adblocker is around 30% (according to GWI, a market research company). With the Stape custom loader, you can bypass adblockers.
  • Simplicity. With Stape, setting up a tagging server URL takes one click.
  • Free global CDN. It uses Cloudflare platform to load JS files (gtm.js, gtag.js, analytics.js, etc.) from a server closer to your site visitors.
  • You can access Logs for free, while on GCP, logs come with extra costs, which can be as much as the price of servers. You can check access logs, request logs, and response logs.
  • The Stape database is included in the subscription plan, while on GCP, you need to pay for Firestore on top. The price of sGTM servers can double or triple for websites with high traffic volumes.
  • Monitoring. You can create a set of rules that will notify you in case of anomalies, not only with your sGTM but also with server-side tracking in general. For example, you may receive an email if the number of purchases in GA4 is 50% less than yesterday, when Facebook CAPI sends a 500 response code, etc.
  • Power-ups. Stape created many power-ups for your server Google Tag Manager container. Here are the main ones:

Anonymizer. With this power-up, you can remove or anonymize user data from Google Analytics 4.

Cookie keeper. Extend cookies when a person uses any browser with the latest version of ITP, which shortens cookies’ lifespans for responses from third-party IPs.

Multi-domains. Business and higher plans allow you to map several subdomains to one server container.

Preview header. This feature lets you see requests from the CRM in the Google Tag Manager server container preview mode.

Personal/ agency access and billing. You can either create a personal account or manage and create containers for clients via an agency account.

Here’s a more visual comparison of Stape and Google Cloud Platform:

Stape sGTM hosting vs Google Cloud Run Platform

Final thoughts

In a nutshell, Stape is one of the top alternatives to Google Cloud Platform. If you choose Stape, you can get the most out of server-side tracking while planning your budget accurately and accessing a robust community and support.

The main reasons to choose Stape are:

  • Price
  • Intuitive UI
  • Setup and operation speed
  • Support
  • EU-owned servers

You can try Stape for free to see what it can do for your business.

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Host your GTM server at Stape