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Understand information in your reports and troubleshoot reporting issues such as self-referrals, (not set) data, and inaccurate information
 
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Direct Traffic Issues

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

 

 

Hello,

 

In October, 2016, we have seen a dramatic increase in Direct traffic, primarily from India, to our Homepage.

 

Our BOT filters are on. We checked for inaccurate tracking codes, tags, etc. We can't seem to narrow down why all of a sudden our homepage is receiving 3-4 times the normal direct traffic as compared to just 1 month ago. Is there an unknown BOT out there that needs to be identified? Are others seeing similar increases in October, 2016?

 

 

Direct Traffic Issues

Explorer ✭ ☆ ☆
# 2
Explorer ✭ ☆ ☆

Hi Julian,

 

Create a segment for direct traffic from India. Apply the segment and then go to Audience < Overview. Are pages per sessions and average session duration close to 0? Bounce rate 99%+? Lots of traffic under language "c"?

 

Those are usually indicators of bot traffic, especially if your site doesn't normally receive a lot of traffic from India. I have filter blocking out traffic with language code "c" for this reason (if you don't already have this filter and want to add it, make sure you use the ^c$ regex instead of just "c"). 

 

Best,

Mike 

Direct Traffic Issues

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 3
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hi Mike,

 

We do get a lot of traffic from India normally - It is actually part of our Target Geo audience. When I applied the "Direct traffic, India Only" segment our pages per session are 1.3 and the average session is 44 seconds so it's clearly not all BOT traffic.

 

Direct traffic is just so hard to pin down! :-)

 

Regards,

Marie (& Julian)

Direct Traffic Issues

Explorer ✭ ☆ ☆
# 4
Explorer ✭ ☆ ☆

Hi Marie (&Julian),

 

What about the language code? It's on the bottom right when you go to the Audience Overview report. If you're seeing lots of sessions with "c" language code with the India/Direct segment applied, I would add language exactly matches "c" to the segment and see what you get. 

 

Best,

Mike

Direct Traffic Issues

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 5
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

 Hi All

 

I can confirm the same issue as Julian.  Direct traffic from India over the period of Oct-Dec 2016 is double that of Jul-Sep 2016.  No signs point to bot traffic, i.e.: sessions do not come from a specific browser, bounce rate unaffected, avg time on page and pages per session unaffected; no other dimension coincides with the increase and this is not just a spike.  Although New Users are responsible for a large part of the increase, Bounce Rate for New Visitors has not increased.

 

Beginning in October, traffic just doubled and has since remained there, without any appreciable increase in transactions (obviously, conversion rates are cut in half).

 

Also, no other countries show the same trend.

 

The possible solutions mentioned in this thread have come up with nothing.  The only global Google news related to India in October had to do with AMP and mobile search results, though mobile traffic increased at the same rate as desktop traffic.

 

We are treating our properties for bots, the typical hostname spamming and referral spam.  The sudden increase seems to defy the logic of spamming.

 

Any help would be greatly appreciated.