Filtering out the noisy robots – Google Analytics
Google Analytics is already pretty good at being more or less accurate and not including search robots – however it isn’t perfect, discovering this pollution and filtering it out typically isn’t as hard to do as people think it is – but most people never bother to check. There is a string created by @philpearce which is worth implememnting.
Which is an excellent start, it won’t do it all unfortunately – there are thousands out there and your network admin or someone else might have added a few to the list – not all accounts have this issue, but out of the 500 or so I checked, typically, the larger sites suffered, and suffered enough to impact the key metrics.
Typically I do the following –
- open the profile you want to look at,
- Click into Technology >> Network
- Use an advanced filter that looks at the ‘near’ bouncers (1.1 pages / visit),
- typically the top few will be robots.
No idea who some of these robots are, but my previous place of work (Adfero) actually used PSInet as the ISP – so I never saw this issue until I left.
A lot of these services are dynamic liable to change host or company at anytime so it is worth repeating this once a month, maybe automate this (Dan Barker did this see below)
Out of the box Google works, pretty well in fact, but still – audit the xxx out of it, and if you need help with that, drop me an email!
Scanning the site to ensure that Analytics is on every page!
A second thing to check is that analytics is installed on every page – http://www.stateofsearch.com/checking-google-analytics-is-installed-on-every-page-with-screaming-frog/ – whilst putting it in your standard templates it is easy to miss the odd few pages that aren’t included in the standard template.