How To Stop Spammers In Google Analytics
It’s getting quite boring dealing with all the false stats appearing in my Google Analytics accounts. It’s time for a solution to stop all this referral spam – and here it is courtesy of eGenie.
Why are forum.advokateg.ru shopping.ilovevitaly.com, darodar, co.lumb appearing in my Google Analytics?
The spammers are using your Google Analytics code to create false page hits & referrals in your stats. If you click on these you are typically directed to a shopping site which the spammers earn a referral from. (I know this to be a Google Analytics problem as I run Webtrends Analytics on my website & do not have the same problem in their reporting.) Because the spammers are never actually visiting your website, there is no server-side solution to this. You need to filter the spam from your analytics account.
Here’s how to filter forum.advokateg.ru shopping.ilovevitaly.com, darodar co.lumb from your my Google Analytics?
First, identify the hostnames the spam traffic is coming from. You will need a custom report to do this, so here’s one I prepared earlier, you can download from Google Solutions Gallery.
You can use this report to identify friendly domains & hostile ones. Here we see eGenie.biz (Friendly – our domain) and Eventbrite (Friendly – listing our courses). But there are some malicious domains there too, such as forum.advokateg.ru
Click on this and we see the dodgy referral source.
Click again and we see the page title. I can safely say that this page does not appear on our website!
Right, let’s get rid of it.
We need to create a filter. Start by creating a filtered view (never use the main data view), see my other blogs if you need to know how to do this.
I could set up a filter to include only visits to the hostname eGenie.biz – however, this would also remove some of my friendly hosts. This could be very important to you if you use third-party site, especially for payments, shopping-carts or bookings.
So we’ve identified the friendly hostnames, here’s how to create a filter to allow only the data from those to appear in your Google Analytics stats. Use the pipe symbol | to separate your friendly domains.
This type of filtering has its problems. If we add new friendly domains to our stats, we need to remember to add them to the filter. This is why it is important to keep an unfiltered View, so that you can go back and check you’re not missing anything.
An alternative is to exclude the baddies (same procedure as above apart from select exclude & enter the spammer domains). This does mean that you will have to continually repeat this whole process as new spammers come & go.