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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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Thank-You pages in the Landing Pages report

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
Thank-you pages appear in reports as Landing Pages, with diverse source / medium. My guess is that a session expired while users were on a webpage with a form (they were not active for more than 30 minutes on it). They came back to that page and submitted the form, which made the new session start with a thank-you page, thus be a Landing Page. In this scenario I was expecting to have the source as (direct), but it's not like that.
If a user has cookies blocked, which would make any page appear as a Landing Page, how would the source / medium show? Shouldn't it be (direct) as well?
Any other possible case here? How are you treating these conversions like?
1 Expert replyverified_user

Re: Thank-You pages in the Landing Pages report

Rising Star
# 2
Rising Star
The most common mistake I see is not setting "thank-you' pages to no-index (https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/93710?hl=en) and they end up in organic search results.
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Director of Marketing | Nehmedia | Partner Profile

Re: Thank-You pages in the Landing Pages report

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 3
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
True, we just fixed that too. Thanks for the observation. Still, there are other sources that appear with the thank-you pages as LPs.

Re: Thank-You pages in the Landing Pages report

Rising Star
# 4
Rising Star
I've had a chance to test cookie blocking and ad blocking behavior on some fairly large sites with a fairly mixed demographic. The cookie blocking behavior is about 1% and the tracking opt-out via Google Analytics Opt-out Browser Add-on seems to be about 2% - but these are lower numbers than others have shared with me. Even so, this traffic may be too low to account for what you see.

When you segment these visitors landing on your thank-you page, are they new or are they returning? Is there something valuable (a receipt, offer, etc) on the thank-you page that would lead people to share or bookmark it? An old-school solution is to use a redirect to another page if the referrer is not what you expect (https://unix4lyfe.org/mod_rewrite-on-referer/) so only form completion visitors see the page. The approach I've taken is to fire an GA event on the thank-you page when the referrer is the form post URL and to use the event as the goal completion (I am a heavy Google Tag Manager user so this step is fairly straightforward).
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Director of Marketing | Nehmedia | Partner Profile

Re: Thank-You pages in the Landing Pages report

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 5
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
Thank you, that's helpful. To answer your points:
- Good to hear that the opt-out traffic may be too low to account anyways.
- All users on these LPs are returning, except very few.
- There's nothing valuable on the thank-you page, just the confirmation message. We use virtual thank-you pages in some cases as well. Those don't appear as LP indeed.

Still, I don't know what to do with these ones - they're quite a few, and they keep growing. I'm counting them as conversions, but I can't use them in analyzing the user behavior on the website at all, or the sources performance. I'll just give up on that, but for the future I wish I can stop it from happening. I'm not sure how though - will consider setting up a virtual thank-you page instead. Thanks again!

Any other suggestions are welcome.

Re: Thank-You pages in the Landing Pages report

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 6
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
Hey Lavinia,

I'm having a similar issue, where there are a large number of "Thank you" pages being recorded as the 'Landing page' in our GA account.

Do you use an external payment page, before the "Thank you" page? What we currently do is direct customers to an extrenally hosted payment portal, which then directs back to the TY page. I have a feeling that I was looking into this a while ago and this was what was causing the Landing Page discrepancies. Might not be your issue, but hope it helps! Smiley Happy

Re: Thank-You pages in the Landing Pages report

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 7
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
Thanks. That would make sense but it's not the case here. What we have is just a page with a form to fill out to get the report by email. After filling out the form they're directed to the thank you page. There's no other way to get there, and the page itself doesn't offer any other valuable assets.

If you want to see the flow let me know and I can share a link as example.

Otherwise, would the scenario I'm assuming, described in the question, make sense to you?