Islamabad Expert From Semalt: What Referrer Spam Is And How To Stop It

Google Analytics is one of the most influential, useful, and famous web analytics services to date. It reports and tracks the traffic of a website and provides the analytical tools for marketing and SEO purposes. It's safe to say that Google Analytics is currently the best and most reliable tracking service on the internet. Unfortunately, the spammers have come up with a shady way of drawing traffic to their own websites using your Google Analytics account and your website.

Traffic is considered as the most valuable factor while evaluating the performance and ranking of a website. The more valuable traffic your site receives, the higher will be your chances to earn profit from the online business. There are multiple things that influence the quality of your website traffic.

To find out whether your site is receiving quality traffic or not, you should bear in mind the following things stipulated here by Nelson Gray, a top expert from Semalt.

What is fake traffic?

The fake or false traffic is generated by spiders, crawlers, and bots, and the real traffic originates from human interaction. In your Google Analytics account, the fake traffic will also be recorded as genuine, and the spammers can easily trick with your Google Analytics reports with page views, events, keywords, screen views, and transactions. For this purpose, they will require your Google Analytics property ID.

Referrer spam and how it impacts the Google Analytics account

The referrer is a type of link that is shared through the HTTP header when your web browser navigates from one site to another. The information gets tracked in your Google Analytics account and gives you the accurate report about who is your audience and how the people interact with your site. It's safe to say that the referrer spam will seriously mess up the Google Analytics reports. Its effects depend on the size of your website. If you have a large website with lots of views, the referrer spam will not be able to create any major problem for you. And if you own a small or medium-sized website, the chances are that Google, Bing, and Yahoo won't improve its search engine ranking due to referrer spam.

Spammers do the same thing to numerous Google Analytics accounts with the help of bots and spiders. They aim to attract you towards their websites, generating lots of revenues from your clicks and page impressions.

How to detect and fix the referrer spam?

To detect and fix the referrer spam, you would have to navigate to the Referral report of your Google Analytics account and change its date to the last three months. Doing so, you will observe that the bounce rate will start decreasing with time and your traffic's quality will be improved automatically. The referrals with 15 or more sessions will either have a bounce rate of 0% or 100%. If you are unsure of how to detect and fix it, go to your Google Analytics account and create manual filters where you can add the suspicious domain names.

Once you have identified the referrer spam, you would have to block the sites like as early as possible so that they don't visit your website ver again. Since their visits are recorded in the server log and your Google Analytics report, you can edit your .htaccess file too. The key to blocking the referrer spam is by accessing the suspicious site and filter it out. You should update the .htaccess file on a regular basis to ensure your site's safety.

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