Reaching more users is the ultimate objective of creating an internet business. The primary business objective is to make your website as visible as possible. Web traffic enables you to reach audiences that are geographically dispersed all over the world with your company, product, or service. Additionally, it aids in gaining more users, creating more commercial chances, and giving marketers the assurance they need to advance their campaigns.
But every platform has a negative side as well. As your internet business expands, it is inevitable that approximately half of the web traffic will be made up of bots. Simply said, bot traffic is the non-human traffic that spiders and robots send to your website. As a result of this traffic, marketers are led to believe that their websites are being visited by genuine people when, in fact, they are just receiving spam, which is often low-quality traffic that skews your aggregated statistics.
How can one possibly discover that there are bots in your website traffic? How can you ensure that your website visitors are real people and not robots, in other words?
By measuring, keeping an eye on, and analysing the following website metrics, brands may spot bot traffic:
Trends in Traffic
Over time, web traffic normally increases steadily. Your efforts in organic marketing, paid advertising, content quality, and other areas will affect this growth. Therefore, if you see a dramatic increase in traffic throughout a day or week, it should immediately raise the possibility of non-human travel. Such traffic significantly distorts the typical graph, giving marketers the impression that their website truly saw a lot of visitors.
A bot-laden website will exhibit a higher bounce rate. A bounce rate below 50% and between 20-25% is considered acceptable and healthy, depending on the nature of your business. On the same note, there are scenarios where the bounce rates also dip to impractical lows, like 10%, or rise to impractical highs like 95%, which might indicate suspicious bot activities on your website.
Traffic predominantly comes from three primary varieties of channels or sources -organic, direct and referral. During a bot attack, the influx of traffic will majorly be from direct sources. A healthy and human-driven traffic usually descends from referral and organic sources like social media and search engines, respectively, on which you maximise efforts.
Hits on Pages
These are simple and easy to detect. You can be sure that bots have attacked your website if you see a vast number of hits from a single IP within a very short period of time. These bots will usually flood your website at regular, repeated intervals, which will show an unnatural skew in your usual traffic graph of hits.
Unexpected Geographic Locations
Though visitors coming to your website are geographically scattered, you can still identify bots smartly if your target audience isn’t even remotely close to your business location. If you have customers regularly visiting your website from an ‘x’ location and suddenly there is a wave of customers coming from ‘y’ location, that could be a sign of bot traffic.
There are lots of tools available online to detect and filter such bots and to prevent them from returning to your website. A daily or weekly check-up of your website is advisable to monitor and curb bot traffic.