A little of technical skills will help you catch unusual traffic easily but the ones without technical skills can also do. All you need to do is watch the post analytics data insightfully and try to figure out a pattern in the traffic. The below 12 points will give you a clear idea on the quality of traffic that you are getting on your website.

  1. Language – Check the traffic via language and see if there is any unusual or invalid language source of traffic
  2. Referrals – This is one of the important metrics to check on as maximum spam traffic comes via referral. E.g. If you see a sudden spike of traffic from Reddit, compare it with last month and see the difference on the hits. If it’s high and no activity was done on Reddit recently, then it’s a spam for sure.
  3. Very less or very high Bounce rate – If the BR is very high consistently and no engagement is happening on the website it is for sure a bot giving impressions also If the bounce rate is extensively low where the time spent is also less, the chances of spam or bot traffic is high
  4. Page view/Session – If you notice page view/session more than pages available on your website, it is definitely bot traffic. E.g. You have a dynamic website of one page where the URL doesn’t change which will ideally have higher bounce rate but if you still notice low bounce rate do scrutinize the source of traffic.
  5. Network Domain – Check the network domain of the traffic that you got, if all the traffic is coming via unknown.unknown then please double sure the traffic by all the metrics available in Google analytics. The dimension does not confirm 100% but yes an important one to check on as maximum spam traffic hides their network domain due to which it is recorded as unknown.unknown.
  6. Browser – If you notice the traffic is coming from the browser which is not famous or known in your country defines the traffic as spam e.g. if you see traffic from browser Maxthon or coc coc in India, it is quite unusual as India has maximum traffic from Chrome, Mozilla, Opera Edge, IE.
  7. City – Traffic source from an unusual city or mentioned as “not set” defines the traffic as spam. This point is taken seriously on the terms of the percentage of traffic received
  8. Operating System – The source should not be “not set”. If yes, please scrutinize further.
  9. Session Duration – Though today the bots have become really smart but by using this dimension you can still check the percentage of traffic with 0 seconds as maximum of the time these bots just refreshes the page to get numbers in analytics
  10. Hour – Check hourly traffic, if you see a sudden spike, please double check if any article was shared socially at the same time or any activity which made that spike. If not, it is worth giving some more time to verify
  11. Organic traffic – Benchmark your paid traffic basis organic traffic always. If the organic bounce rate is 55%, make sure to benchmark paid traffic under 65% and not beyond, similarly, time spent, etc. This is important to evaluate as the organic traffic gives you an idea of your website performance. Generally, organic traffic numbers are pretty fine, if the same is unusual please also check your website performance.
  12. User flow – If you see a high consistency of the user flow, trust me chuck out the traffic source. It is not a human but a well-trained Bot giving you the kind of traffic you want.

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