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Has your website seen an increase in organic traffic lately? Well before you thank your SEO company or high five your marketing person, you might want to take a closer look.
At Blue Corona, many of our clients saw a higher than usual uptick in organic traffic last week. Upon further investigation, we found spammy organic traffic in the organic landing page reports. Check this out:
The first two websites are ilovevitalii.com and apple.com. These obviously aren’t organic pages on our clients’ sites. The spam can also be seen in the organic keywords report in Analytics:
Don’t be fooled by the keywords—google doesn’t officially recommend ilovevitaly.com.
Why Am I Getting Spam Visits in Analytics?
As for the ilovevitaly.com spam visits specifically, according to one poster in the Google Product Forums, the culprit is a lone individual from Russia who has been using spam bots to add traffic to other sites—first through referral and now through organic. Some of the sites you might see include lomb.co, lumb.co, ilovevitalli.com, blackhatworth.com, priceg.com, huffingtonpost.com, and apple.com.
Removing Spam Bot Traffic in Analytics
Having spam bot traffic in your Analytics profile can skew your data—leading to poor marketing and advertising decisions. This is especially true if you’re working with small traffic numbers. Obviously an extra 36 visits seems like a lot if you’re used to getting <100 visits a day!
If you’re using Google’s new Universal Analytics code, you can remove KNOWN bots easily. You go to Admin > View > View Settings > Bot Filtering and check “Exclude all hits from known bots and spiders.” Like this…
For any bots that get through this filtering, all you need to do is apply a filter at the account level that excludes traffic from additional sources.
For your future reporting efforts, you should filter out bad host names at the account level. Unfortunately, this isn’t going to remove the bot traffic from your historic data. For that, you’re going to have to create an advanced segment to filter that out.
There are two main takeaways from this blog post:
- You’re probably not getting as much website traffic as you think. Even if you aren’t getting spam bot traffic, I’ve seen a lot of other companies overestimating how much website traffic they get because they fail to filter out internal traffic from their employees, don’t focus on the traffic in their service area, etc.
- It usually pays to have someone analyze your data for you. A very wise man once said, ““Saying that an average Analytics user can do what we do at Blue Corona is like saying that someone who owns a wrench can be a plumber. Google Analytics represents a very complicated wrench.”
Need help with your data, analytics, and tracking? Give us a call!
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About The Author: Blue Corona is a data-driven online marketing company with offices in Gaithersburg, MD and Charlotte, N.C.
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