I have a website, let's say example.com. We have recently launched a new product and set up a new site in the same domain, newservice.example.com, and have added a prominent link on the existing established site. Both sites are on the same Google Analytics account, but are set up as different properties.

How can I track, using Google Analytics, how much of the traffic coming to newservice.example.com comes from the other site? I thought that they would show up in the "Acquisition" section as "Referrals", but when I go there, I see that 90% of the traffic of the new site shows as "Direct", which makes no sense (it's a new site and we haven't advertised it heavily). The "Referral" section doesn't show any traffic either coming from example.com.

1 Answer 1


You need to update your domain exclusion list for your new Google Analytics Property.

All newly created properties are created with including full your website domain into domain exclusion list automatically. In this case, it's example.com which excludes example.com and newservice.example.com domains from the referral list.

The referral exclusion list uses CONTAINS matching. For example, if you enter example.com, then traffic from sales.example.com is also excluded (because the domain name contains example.com).

In this case, if you want to include example.com under Referrals you need to delete the default one which is example.com and add newservice.example.com. This will include all referrals from example.com under referrals and newservice.example.com as direct traffic.

Adding referral traffic sources

  1. Adding referral traffic sources Sign in to your Analytics account.
  2. Click Admin. In the ACCOUNT column, select the Analytics account that contains the property you want to work with.
  3. In the PROPERTY column, select a property.
  4. Click Tracking Info.
  5. Click Referral Exclusion List.
  6. To add a domain, click +ADD REFERRAL EXCLUSION.
  7. Enter the Domain name.
  8. Click Create to save.1

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