Ghost Referral Spam in Google Analytics

Have you noticed a recent spike in referral traffic in Google Analytics?

Something like the following:

Google Analytics Ghost Referrals

What is Ghost Referral Spam?

A number of our clients have suffered from this, which is being referred to as ghost referrals.

This is when a site sends hits to your website in an effort to get you to look at Google Analytics and think “who’s that?”.  It is hoped that you will then click on their site where they can then capture your details and then spam you incessantly from then on in.

Is this a cause for concern?

There is no real danger to your business from this ghost referral spam tactic, other than to ruin your Analytics data.

The best solution, for the moment, is to add any unwanted referral domains to the referral exclusion list, which is added at Property level in the Admin of Analytics.

This will not stop the traffic to your site, but will stop it being recorded in Analytics and skewing your statistics.

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