In March I speculated on Twitter that the Google analytics referral spam referral spam problem might be solved.
At the time, lots of people agreed with me, and things stayed pretty clean through the first part of April.
Did @googleanalytics fix the referral spam issue? To me it seems so. No Feb spam in over a dozen domains so far. #SEO
— Scott Hendison (@shendison) March 4, 2016
However, in May referral spam came back with a vengeance, and nearly every single client had new spam domains showing in Analytics, and the older ones seemed to come back worse than ever, with dozens of fake visits, showing an artificial spike in traffic.
Even worse, my own lovingly maintained referral spam segment became corrupted somehow, and Google would no longer let me update. No matter what I did, since mid April, anytime I try to either edit or preview my segment I ontinue to get this error –
This morning I rebuilt the segment from the ground up, starting completely over, using a slightly different method. Instead of putting every domain on its own line for easy location and editing, and using Source / Contain, I went back to using what’s called a regex expression, putting multiple domains on the same line.
I used all of the domains from my own segment, which i’ve accumulated over the past year, plus added the domains form the RegEx shared here so there may be some duplication. This segment should remove 100% of your referral spam, and you can download it here from the Google Solution Gallery