The spam in Google Analytics (GA) is the worst thing any ecommerce website can come across. Following the deluge of referral spam from adult sites, social buttons or other sources, online shopping website owners are getting more concerned about the useless data and traffic they are receiving.

At first, you may get excited with the overwhelming response to your marketing efforts. However, the spam traffic in Google Analytics is a great drawback for your business growth as the traffic is sent from spammers.

Before we start discussing about the methods to stop referral traffic from Google Analytics, it’s important to understand how spam works and the types of spam:


There’s a reason the type of spam is called ‘ghosts.’ It’s because they make up a majority of your website traffic by Google Analytics without even accessing your site. This is never tracked by the Google’s search console and no plugins or extensions won’t prevent ghosts. Spammers leave a fake visit to your website by using randomly generated Google Analytics tracking code ID. And they don’t even care which eCommerce platforms they are hitting.


This is something different to the Ghost spam. Crawlers actually visit your website and they don’t care about the in robot.txt files that prevent reading your site’s specific pages. This way your website receives a real visitor in the form of a bot. It is more difficult to identify crawlers as they usually target known sites rather than random GA IDs. So if you notice a suspicious activity during a website traffic analysis, checking it out on Google is relatively easy.


What Is Referral Spam & How To Remove It In Your Google Analytics?


Steps to Block Spam SEO Traffic in Google Analytics:

Block Specific Countries

If you run an online shopping store, you may get traffic from worldwide. However, if you are noticing a lot of suspicious activities and very legitimate traffic from a specific country, then it is recommended to block traffic from the countries. For example, if you are targeting Canada for your business growth and 65% of your traffic comes from Thailand in spam, there’d be hardly any impact on your business and sales if you block traffic from Thailand using spam blocker.

Use the following process to block specific countries:

  • Admin>> Create another new view>> Filters>> +New Filter Button.

This way you can select the country you want to block with the dropdown.

Use Hostname Filter

In order to eliminate the visit of ghost traffic to your website, it is important to identify their sources. Go to your Reporting tab in Google Analytics and select a time frame to get data for. The time should be wide enough to capture maximum data of the referral traffic and their sources, but not too large to make the data unmanageable. Ideally, it is suggested to get the data of 3 months for better and meaningful website traffic analysis. Select “audience” and then select “Network” after you expand the “technology” section. Select “Hostname” and a complete list of the Hostnames will be visible.

If the hosts are more than 10, you may use the option to “see them all.”

Get all the invalid Hostnames from the database and create a Regular Expression filter that matches the invalid Hostnames. Make sure to get the best ones in there as you are allowed to use only 255 characters in the expression.

Block Common Spiders & Bots

There is a wide range of spiders and bots available that create problem for the online shopping websites. The good news is you don’t need to do it yourself manually, but Google Analytics will do it for you. Blocking the common and known bots will save a lot of your time and effort.

Go to “View settings” and click on “Exclude all hits from known bots and spiders.” You can manually remove a few of your most fundamental traffic sources from the list.

Wrap Up

If left unchecked, ghost spam and crawlers can undermine the reliability of your web analytic. Keep checking your website traffic and their sources while keeping an eye on the GA to block known bots. But, it is important to remember that this doesn’t protect you from all the crawlers and bots, using additional filters prove to be the most effective method for eCommerce platforms to deal with historical spam.