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hiding_your_own_traffic_from_google_analytics [2009/02/01 18:01] (current)
Joel Dare created
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 +====== Hiding Your Own Traffic From Google Analytics ======
  
 +I recently setup a Google Analytics account on this site in order to get a "​second opinion"​ of my traffic (compared to my regular site statistics). ​ What I noticed pretty quickly is that my own traffic was poisoning my results. ​ So, I set out to hide my own traffic.
 +
 +Google Analytics offers a couple different ways to hide your own traffic. ​ Basically, you setup a filter and filter traffic based on some criteria. ​ At first, I considered doing it by IP address, but I regularly make connections from wireless access points at home, at work, on trains, at relatives homes, and even at restaurants. ​ It would be pretty difficult to block all those dynamic IP addresses.
 +
 +My next idea was to setup a special sub-domain, such as example.joeldare.com,​ and then to filter on that.  Right away, I see two possible problems with this approach.  ​
 +
 +  - I don't want the general public to use my hidden domain name.
 +  - I don't want to accidentally use my regular domain name.
 +
 +Solving both problems was easy.  Here are the steps I took.
 +
 +  - Setup "name based hosting"​ on my web host in order to accept requests from my new hidden domain.
 +  - DO NOT set the domain name up on a public DNS server, preventing the public from using it.
 +  - Setup the hidden domain in the host file on my home and work computers.
 +  - Setup invalid entries for my domains in the host file on my home and work computers, breaking the regular domains, but only for me.
 +
 +That's it.  Now I can access the site through my hidden domain name, I can't accidentally use the real domain name, and the general public can't easily use my hidden domain name.
 +
 +Finally, at Google Analytics I setup two profiles so that I can see my traffic as it actually is and also with my own traffic excluded.
 

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hiding_your_own_traffic_from_google_analytics.txt ยท Last modified: 2009/02/01 18:01 by Joel Dare