Bogus Users on Google: Websites Traffic Gets Inflated By Czechia and Seychelles Spam Guests. How to Deal With This?

Do you remember if you were a kid, you believed you had received an amazing present, and it was actually a couple of socks?

Well, the equivalent of that will in the life of an SEO professional is opening up Google Analytics, seeing a spike in organic traffic, and also discovering it was all the lie.

That’ s exactly what happened with the Rock Content blog at the beginning of August.

Virtually overnight, we started to receive a huge amount of traffic through two places that in no way appeared in our rankings: Czechia and Seychelles.

After investigating, all of us realized that this was happening along with several other websites on the internet. And after that we concluded: the traffic was fake.

A unfortunate story full of broken hopes and unfulfilled goals, correct? But a story that introduced valuable lessons to the entire team — and that I wish to share with you now.

In this post, you will see how our investigation proceeded to go and what to do when your site receives fake traffic.

How did Czechia and Seychelles come into our lives?

It all started on August 4th, once the traffic on our US weblog (which remained constant all through June) grew 37% from one day to the next.

On the 8th of August, we were already obtaining almost twice as much traffic compared to a day in June.

The very first thing I did was identify the source of this visitors in the Acquisition Reporting section associated with Google Analytics. Maybe it had been a spike in compensated traffic coming from some marketing campaign. Maybe we went viral on social media, who knows?  

But no, it was in fact a spike in organic traffic. This already struck me as odd, since Rock Content ‘ s blog traffic has never behaved this way.

Then I did something I usually do: I put “ Country” as a secondary filtration system on Analytics. And this was your result:

The United States left first place because the country that most accesses our blog, losing its crown in order to two countries that had never appeared in our search positions.

The strangest thing has been Seychelles, an archipelago within Africa with a population associated with less than 95, 000 people who, ten years ago, had lower than 2, 000 internet users, based on Wikipedia . If you like cartoons, it’s near Madagascar .  

This intrigued all of us: how does a small archipelago that has tourism and fishing as well as its primary economic activities turn out to be so interested in Digital Marketing all of a sudden?  

The analysis continues…

Once I understood where the traffic had been coming from, I needed to understand why .

First, I identified how traffic in Czechia and Seychelles socialized from June to Aug . Was it a far more or less natural growth, or something more akin to an explosion in periods?

Looking at the percentages is enough to understand that the second option received:

This particular behavior also went towards anything else observed on the weblog.

My next step was in order to identify the pages that were getting the the majority of traffic from these countries (with the help of the Behavior Confirming section associated with Google Analytics).

The ranking was quite varied, but some pages were getting more attention in both regions, like our posts about:

And that’ t when things got also stranger.  

Despite attaining a lot of traffic, the most went to pages in Czechia plus Seychelles had an incredibly high bounce rate. Besides that will, the average session duration practically did not exist.

All this directed to the presence of robots on our site.  

What I needed to know right now was if this attack was happening only with Rock Content or with other websites as well.

It’s everyone’ s i9000 problem. But what’s leading to it?

A simple online lookup revealed to me other people confirming the same problem.

Source: Reddit

Some professionals shared possible causes on websites and forums, but the exact reason for the particular spike in organic traffic is unknown.

One hypothesis is that the affected sites are victims of a DDos attack. Basically, it is a type of assault that consists of flooding a server along with traffic to prevent users from accessing it.

Precisely why? According to Kinsta , there are some reasons, for example:

  • Your competitors could remove your website to steal business from you while you are offline.
  • Perhaps the nature of the content on your site can be controversial enough that people wish to block access to it.
  • Or maybe a company requires down your website to show how the internet service they offer is better than one you have.

Although this hypothesis is valid, websites from different segments were affected in the same way. So it doesn’ t appear to have been the coordinated DDos attack having a specific intent.  

This leaves us with the 2nd hypothesis: it is a problem of Google Analytics itself , which is not able to filter the bots for some reason.

How did we achieve this conclusion?  

NameHero did an interesting experiment to see how their traffic was behaving in Google Analytics 4 (GA4), and found that will its numbers there were pretty close to reality — in other words, the platform did not identify traffic coming from Czechia and Seychelles.

So check your data over the GA4. Maybe this is taking place to you too.  

Czechia and Seychelles: what to do with all the fake traffic?

The most talked about solution online is to block the fake traffic using Cloudflare .

There are reports of people by using this service and seeing visitors from Czechia and Seychelles being stopped (check away an example on Mighty Gadget )

But there are also chances that this traffic flow may end naturally. That’ s what happened in order to us on the 16th associated with August:

Whatever the problem was, it could be that Google has already fixed this.  

And thankfully, after analyzing our data within SEMrush, it seems safe to say that the bots have not harmed our SEO strategies.

Lesson learned

What happened had been pretty bizarre and didn’ t bring definitive answers, but it made even better the importance of always analyzing information in depth.  

Whenever traffic spikes occur, it’ s best to be suspicious and hold back the enjoyment.  

It could be that your articles plan is paying off, certain, but it could also be something totally out of your control influencing your numbers.

So investigate 1st, celebrate later. This is the living of an SEO professional.

Do you wish to continue to be updated with SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION best practices? I strongly claim that you subscribe to The Beat , Rock Content ’s interactive newsletter. There, you’ll find all the trends that matter in the Digital Marketing landscape. See you there!

The post Fake Users on the search engines: Websites Traffic Gets Inflated By Czechia and Seychelles Spam Visitors. How to Deal With This? appeared 1st on Rock Content .

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