Incoming traffic is an indicator of a website’s success, and every site owner celebrates a spike in traffic. However, not all traffic is good or genuine. Unusually high traffic from specific locations is enough to cause alarm. For instance, if all your traffic comes from unusual places like China, it could result from spam or bot traffic.
Bot traffic refers to non-human website visitors. The traffic surges are exhilarating at a glance, but wait until you engage your Google Analytics. The sudden windfall of good fortune is not all it seems. The average time a visitor spends on your site, the percentage of new visitors, and bounce rate figures are all terrible.
How to Identify and Eliminate Spam Website Traffic
Nobody would want useless, fake traffic to invade their website. However, you may lack the know-how to identify and weed out spam traffic off your site. Here, we look at some of the ways to identify fake bot traffic.
Find the Location of the Traffic Surge
One simple way to confirm a spam bot suspicion is by analyzing the source location of the traffic spike. On your Analytics, click Audience, then Demographics, and finally, Location. Go through the locations that report the most visits. If you are operating a local website, say in California, and you get a sudden increase in visitors from China, you have reason enough to suspect spam.
However, if you run an international website, it could be that one of your guerrilla marketing campaigns has paid off. Expand your date range on Analytics and see whether you get regular visitors from China. If you regularly get traffic from the location in question, then the traffic could be genuine.
Analyze the Traffic
Now that you know the source of your fake traffic, it’s time to reveal the bogus visitors’ identity. The first thing is to check the domain from which the traffic is originating. The simplest way to do this is to go back to the previous demographic analysis on Analytics. You need to add Domain as a secondary dimension to the suspicious traffic from the location in question.
If you don’t get unknown.com, search the domain, figure out the source, and determine whether it is genuine. But if you get the feared unknown.com, go to Audience, then Technology, and finally, Networks. Here, you will figure out the network generating the abnormal surge.
Disable the Fake Visitors!
Create an Advanced Segment in your Google Analytics that excludes the fake traffic provider you have just identified. You can now compare data without the fear of fake numbers. Remember, you should only block traffic from a specific country when you’re absolutely sure it’s fraudulent. The last thing any website wants is to prevent genuine visitors from accessing its content.
Not all bot traffic is bad. It all depends on the purpose of the bot. Some bots offer helpful digital assistance for businesses and are welcome to visit your site. You can also buy adult traffic and choose your traffic source without harming your site.
However, other bots are mostly harmful. They generate spam traffic that throws your Google Analytics report out of kilter and dilutes the real data in a sea of fake traffic. They bring down your site’s engagement metrics and waste server resources, eventually increasing load speed for real traffic.