How To Stop Referral Spam In Google Analytics - Semalt Practice

It is important to understand the main point of referral spam and how it appears in Google Analytics. It would not be wrong to say that referral spam creates a lot of problems both for webmasters and marketers, and should be gotten rid of as soon as possible. It comes from different types of social media platforms, adult content websites, and the sites that look to be legitimate, offering you plenty of prizes and money.

Referral spam can throw off your Google Analytics report in a short period, and you should identify and remove it before it's too late and your site's performance is damaged. Thus, Oliver King, the Customer Success Manager of Semalt, assures that it is vital to take care of referral spam and explains how to proceed with this successfully.

Why you should care about referral spam?

This question will be answered in two parts: first of all, referral spam slows down the performance of your site and your Google Analytics, so it is important to care about it. Secondly, the spam corrupts your files and data, leading to illegal content being viewed to the humans who visit your websites. The troublesome sources of referral spam create different misleading patterns that can result in inappropriate conclusions. If you set up your website and start receiving heavy traffic without any search engine optimization, there are chances that you have become the victim of referral spam. Even the heavily visited sites might get referral spam, but it is not easy to identify from those hundreds to thousands of hits they receive per day. What does referral spam do to your data? Well, it increases the bounce rate of your website, decreases the performance, falsely increases the sessions, obfuscates referral traffic performance and can hinder goal conversions and location data.

Stopping ghost and crawler referral spam

2017 is a year when various webmasters and marketers are worried about how to stop ghost and crawler referral spam. Google has not laid any policies or provided the solution to this problem, but some people suggest adjusting the settings in Google Analytics and blocking the anonymous or suspicious IP addresses.

Spammers and hackers are always busy in ruing your site's performance and its overall credibility. Google may or may not be providing some deals to get rid of the referral spam so that you can block them through .htaccess files. In fact, it is one of the most efficient ways to stop referral spam and to block the unknown IP addresses to a great extent. Let me here tell you that the .htaccess files are very powerful and dedicate how servers behave and characters are built on your website. Your whole site will be taken done if the referral spam keeps on arriving every day.

Analytics filters

Another way to get rid of referral spam is the analytics filter. The .htaccess files can protect you from the future sessions being imported by referral spam, but this would not leave any impact on the bounce rate of your site. This is where you need to create filters in Google Analytics. The analytics filters are easy to set up and ensure to remove harmful files from your system.


There are some features of Google Analytics as well as several WordPress plugins that can be used to get rid of referral spam. But the above ideas are easy and quick to go with and provide excellent results.