6

In my Google Analytics real-time I now see a lot of visitors with referrer forum20.smailik.org This link redirects to http://www.aliexpress.com/

What does this traffic mean? (And should I block it?)

4

I would check your log files to see if this is referrer traffic to your site as opposed to Google Analytics. There is a new spam technique seen here: How to fight off Google Analytics referrer spammers? though neither of these domains are owned by this spammer and this answer may not apply- it is well worth a read for general knowledge of a new technique.

If you find forum20.smailik.org in your log files, then it is normal referrer spam- I say spam because as you say it redirects to aliexpress.com which is owned by Hangzhou Alibaba Advertising Co. Alibaba is fairly well known for spam/junk traffic. Alibaba is an ISP in China which is quite permissive.

I researched both of these domain names in my database and did not find anything. I did a quick search and it appears to be fairly normal referrer spam. You can block this using .htacess if you wish with:

RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} ^forum20\.smailik\.org$ [NC]
RewriteRule .* - [F,L]

As well, here is an example from @Flo that is well worth preserving:

<rule name="abort referer spam requests" stopProcessing="true">
  <match url=".*" />
    <conditions>
      <add input="{HTTP_REFERER}" pattern="^forum20\.smailik\.org$" />
    </conditions>
  <action type="AbortRequest" />
</rule>

And of course you can create a filter in Google Analytics. Here is the Google help on creating a filter: https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/1033162?hl=en

  • Thanks. And for the IIS users out there, this is what I already had for semalt: <rule name="abort referer spam requests" stopProcessing="true"> <match url=".*" /> <conditions> <add input="{HTTP_REFERER}" pattern="(semalt\.com)|(buttons\-for\-website\.com)" /> </conditions> <action type="AbortRequest" /> </rule> – Flo Mar 5 '15 at 14:55
  • @Flo I added an IIS example based upon your comment. I hope I got it right! Thanks for the tip!! It will help someone down the road. – closetnoc Mar 5 '15 at 15:38
  • Perfect, the more examples we get out there the sooner this spam will stop...hopefully :) – Flo Mar 7 '15 at 16:44
  • @Flo I had modified one of my tools that does a few simple IP network block stuff for my convenience and I had added htaccess block code output so that I can simply cut and paste it here. I will add your example to that script along with the nginx and cisco code I just added a few weeks ago. It is my mission to stop these b@5t@rd5!! ;-) See- your example will go a long way!! Thanks again! Keep chiming in where you can. It really helps. – closetnoc Mar 7 '15 at 16:54
2

The best way to stop this kind of Referrer Spam is adding a filter in your Google Analytics as @closetnoc says.

1 Go to your Admin tab in Google Analytics.

2 Click on All Filters in the account section of your website.

3 Select New Filter.

4 Fill in the options as shown in the next image.

block referrer spam

Since this sites never reach your site is not useful to us .htaccess file. You can Stop other Referrer Spam like buttons-for-website.com with this method

Some of the most common Referrer Spam are:

bestwebsitesawards.com 
darodar.com 
ilovevitaly.com 
semalt.semalt.com
hulfingtonpost.com

Is better to add a filter for the most common in the list before they start showing and messing with your statistics.

Another way to stop them is to change your Google Analytics tracking ID for one that doesn't ends in 1 like UA-XXXXXXX-2, since this kind of Spam usually targets UA-XXXXXXX-1 ID's.

This is only recommended if you have a new site since changing the tracking ID will start your statistics from 0.

Hope it helps.

0

Using a slightly different technique, all of the Referral Spam domains can be listed in one filter. Personally, I'd rather not have a separate filter for each domain, so I'll just add more domains to the one filter as needed. If there's any inherent flaw with this approach, I'd appreciate the feedback!

Prior to creating my filter, I set my date range for reporting to the last 8 months, selected Acquisition in the reporting sidebar, then All Traffic, then Referrals. I then sorted the list by Bounce Rate. This helped me figure out which Referral Spam domains have been hitting our GA account, and I compiled my list from there.

On the same New Filter page @Chavo references, I selected Custom filter type, and under Exclude selected Campaign Source as the Filter Field. I then entered each domain into Filter Pattern, separated by the pipe character ("|") without any added spaces, as shown below.

UPDATE: I now realize that there's a 255 character limit in the "Filter Pattern" field, so multiple filters will have to be made when that limit is reached.

GA New Filter Settings for Blocking Referral Spam

  • We get a lot of spam from ohow.com so as a first time poster I have to view this suspiciously and remove it. – John Conde Apr 2 '15 at 15:53
  • Removed reference to ohow.co (not ohow.com). Sorry for that. Won't happen again, I promise! – digijim Apr 2 '15 at 16:26
  • No worries. Glad you're here to contribute. :) – John Conde Apr 2 '15 at 16:29
  • Hi Jonh, I think saying that we get a lot of spam it's not right, not even fair I posted a couple of answers (good answers) with a link to an article to support them (after the questions were answerd), of that almost three months ago. The only thing wrong was that they were first answers – Chavo Jun 3 '15 at 20:08
  • You removed the 2 links that were considered as spam in this site(understandable everyone has his own rules) and the rest of the answer stayed, serving the purpose of this site. It's ok if you don't want the links, you decide, but I don't think is fair saying you receive a lot of spam, I don't know digijim and I'm glad one of my methods helped him, since thats what the articles are for, and until now they have been helping thousands of people. – Chavo Jun 3 '15 at 20:19

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.