Organic traffic is unpaid traffic you get from search engines. Unlike paid traffic, you can…
Bot Traffic: Everything You Need to Know and How to Stop It
Bot traffic is a type of traffic that has been created to perform specific actions on a website. It can be used for sending emails, posting blog articles, commenting on social media sites, and much more.
In this blog post, we’re going to discuss the different types of bots along with the impact they could have on your website.
Let’s get started.
Different Types of Bots
While bot traffic isn’t necessarily bad, they are usually used to spam clicks, send spam messages, and gather user data. Combined, these things could greatly skew your Google Analytics data and leave you with inaccurate information about your website’s overall performance.
For example, if over 50% of your website traffic is composed of bots, you’ll have no idea which of your SEO strategies are working. You’ll be unable to identify which service pages or blog posts are resonating with actual users instead of bots.
In a nutshell, you won’t have the necessary data to make your next big digital marketing decisions.
However, like we previously stated, not all bot traffic is bad. Search engines use crawlers or spiderbots to find and index web pages. Without these crawlers, Google would be unable to find your content.
Some bots also check websites to ensure they’re not using copyrighted images. These types of bots could be particularly useful if your website contains plenty of original images.
How to Identify Bots
Exceedingly High Pageviews and Bounce Rates
Your traffic is growing rapidly and users are sharing the latest posts with their friends. This can be a good sign.
However, if your pages are getting plenty of pageviews in an extremely short period without much user interaction, it could mean that bots are artificially inflating your overall views.
Sudden Spikes in Traffic
When your traffic increases all of a sudden, you can usually pinpoint the cause for it after investigating for a bit. A sudden spike in traffic can be due to an increase in keyword rankings, a link from an authority in your field, and more.
For example, you might notice that your traffic increased during the third week of the month because you sent out a newsletter with a discount voucher. You can confirm this by checking how much traffic you received from your newsletter provider.
However, if you’re unable to pinpoint the reason for a sudden traffic spike, it may be due to bots, especially if the traffic is from a location you don’t usually do business in.
Low Average Session Duration
The average session duration is known as a metric for web performance. It’s an attempt to quantify how long the average person spends on a website when browsing the internet.
We would generally consider an average session duration of two minutes or more a sign that users like and are engaging with your content.
Having a low average session duration is a red flag that your website is being swarmed by automated traffic and bots. The last thing you want to see is your visitors accessing your site continuously without any movement or activity. So, keep a close eye on these statistics.
How to Stop Bot Traffic
Create a robots.txt file.
A robots.txt file is a text file that, when served from a web server, instructs the search engine crawler which pages to crawl and in what order. It’s a file that you use to tell search engines not to index certain pages on your site.
Use a bot management solution.
Bot managers are software tools that manage bots. By using one, you can control which bots can access your website along with what actions they can perform.
If you enter one too many searches on Google, you’ll probably encounter a CAPTCHA. Usually, Google asks you to select the right answer from a variety of images.
CAPTCHA stands for Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart. They’re used to prevent bots from performing specific actions on websites like sending forms, logging in, and more.
By enabling CAPTCHA, you’ll filter out bots that could affect your website’s conversion rate. Let’s say you’re trying to get users to sign up for your newsletter, so you can send them discount codes and other promotions. Without sign-ups from bots, you’ll be able to more accurately tell how many users signed up and which service pages convinced them to do so.
Decreasing bot traffic is a must, especially if you do business online. You can ensure that your website protects user information and get more accurate data regarding how your website is doing.
Cornerstone Digital is a WordPress development company in Sydney. We’d be glad to talk to you about generating the right kind of traffic. Call us on (02) 8211 0668 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A self-professed book and digital marketing nerd, Darlyn Herradura focuses on building trust between customers and businesses with the written word. She understands that creating valuable content is the best way to get found online and happily spends her time doing that.