Marketers Have Been Reporting Bot Traffic in Google Analytics
Have you recently seen spikes in your GA traffic that is outside of your normal range? Maybe you are noticing traffic from odd referral sources, or really high bounce rates?
Your site could be falling victim to bot traffic, which is an ongoing, known issue that digital marketers have been dealing with for years. If any of the above scenarios fit your situation, it might be time to dig a little deeper.
How to Spot Bot Traffic
While there are many parts of your data that bots can impact that may alert you to some suspicious activity, the quickest way to see if you have bot traffic is to check your referrals.
If you select Acquisition -> All traffic -> Referrals, and change your time frame, you will be able to see what types of referral traffic you have received.
“If you suddenly see a source you don’t recognize or one that seems fishy (e.g., “bot-traffic.icu”) suddenly giving you a thousand visits in a matter of days, you might have been the victim of some bot traffic infiltrating your GA account.” – Steve DiMatteo, Digital Content Director at Sixth City Marketing
How to Remove It
Thankfully, there is a very quick and easy way to remove bot referral traffic from your Google Analytics account.
- Log into Analytics and navigate to the admin panel at the bottom of the menu on the left side of your screen by clicking on the gear icon
- Once at the admin screen, in the second column, click on “Tracking Info” and then “Referral Exclusion List”
- Then, select “Add Referral Exclusion” and enter in the domain from your referrals that you want removed
- Click save, and you are done!
How to Prevent It
If you want to take precautionary measures to ensure your data doesn’t get interrupted, you can follow the steps above by adding in these well-known bot sources: