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Learn to identify referral spam traffic, as well as best practices to reduce referral spam in your Google Analytics account
 
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Receiving Direct Traffic From Network Domain Unknown.Unknown

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Good Morning,

 

I am going through my direct traffic report in Google Analytics after receiving lots of ghost spam.

 

I have been able to eliminate some fairly obvious ones, however there are some sources that I do not know exactly what to classify as.

 

The one's in question are listed as unknown.unknown , com and (not set).

 

Any ideas as to what this traffic is?

 

Thank you, I appreciate the help!

 

- Charles

 

 

1 Expert replyverified_user

Re: Receiving Direct Traffic From Network Domain Unknown.Unknown

Rising Star
# 2
Rising Star
Hi Charles, there are a couple of reasons for this behavior.

The most common is using the Referral Exclusion List for Spam, what will happen is that the referral part will be stripped and leave the "visit" as direct. If this your case, just remove the spam from the list, and create a segment with your hostnames to clean your data.

The second reason and less common but harder to solve, it's probably a bot going around I've found a few accounts that started having an unusual increase at the beginning of July 2015, others in December. While the source is unknown, you can check different dimensions to find some pattern. The use your that to create a segment to exclude those visits. Some dimensions worth to check are the flash version, browser version, screen color.

You can find more details about all this in this post:
http://www.ohow.co/unusual-increase-in-direct-traffic-on-ga-spam/

Hope it helps,
Google Analytics Rising Star | Was my response helpful? If yes, please mark it as the 'Best Answer.' Learn how here!
Analytics Consultant at Carloseo.com - Find me on Twitter | Email me

Re: Receiving Direct Traffic From Network Domain Unknown.Unknown

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 3
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
Thanks Carlos!

I went back into analytics and it seems that since it started tracking in April 2014 there has been traffic each month from Com, Unknown.unknown & (not set), but it increased dramatically in October 2015.

I am currently working on putting together a report for the client, is it safe to say that visits from these three categories I mention above should be removed from the Direct Traffic totals for each month?

I have already removed lots of other sources that were spam, based on information I found in some of your blogs and posts online.

Thanks a lot for all of your help and for your other posts, which I used to help ID the other spam sources.

- Charles


Receiving Direct Traffic From Network Domain Unknown.Unknown

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 4
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

"If this your case, just remove the spam from the list, and create a segment with your hostnames to clean your data."

 

How would you do that?