How to block Google Analytics Internal Traffic

Last Updated: May 20, 2022

In this article, I will show you how to block Google Analytics Internal Traffic.

What is Google Analytics Internal Traffic?

The internal traffic is the traffic recorded by Google Analytics for your website from your employees working from home or office.

There is a good possibility that you and your employees may be inflating your own website traffic data by visiting your website every day or so. 

The traffic generated by you or your employees, suppliers and other service providers to your website is called the ‘Internal Traffic’.

Since these people are not your target market, you should not track their activities on your website in GA.

Internal traffic can easily skew your website usage metrics (sessions, bounce rate, page views, time on site, ecommerce conversion rate, etc) and therefore must be filtered out from your Google Analytics reports.

Google Analytics does not honour the ‘Do Not Track’ request

Do Not Track is an opt-out feature available in all major web browsers.

When you turn this feature ‘On’, it sends a ‘Do not track’ request to each website you visit. 

It also sends ‘Do not track’ requests to each third-party advertiser whose contents/ads are hosted on the websites you visit.

Depending upon the individual’s privacy policies, websites and third parties may or may not honour the ‘do not track’ request. 

The websites which do honour the request will immediately stop tracking your browsing behavior.

Google Analytics does not honour the ‘Do not track’ request. 

So enabling ‘Do no track’ is not going to help you in blocking the internal traffic in GA reports or being tracked by Google Analytics.

The most effective way to block Google Analytics Internal Traffic

The majority of optimizers recommend using IP based filters to block internal traffic in Google Analytics or do some ‘JavaScript‘ hack. I don’t:

Do not use IP based filters to block internal traffic

The IP based filters applied to a Google Analytics view are not effective as IP addresses keep changing and the majority of people do not use static IPs. 

So you may be working under the impression that you are already blocking internal traffic in GA when that is not the case.

Install and enable Google Analytics Opt-out Add on

Google Analytics opt out add on

In order to minimize or even completely eliminate the possibility of inflating/skewing the traffic of your own website, I would suggest installing Google Analytics Opt-out Add-on on all of your desktop/laptop computers and enabling it.

I use this extension all of the time. It is a chrome extension that disables Google Analytics (ga.js, analytics.js, and dc.js). 

So then, no matter how many times you or your staff visit your own website, your visits will not be recorded by Google Analytics.

It is independent of IP addresses. So a change in IP address won’t affect this extension.

This extension is also available for other web browsers: ‘Mozilla Firefox’, ‘Apple Safari’ and ‘Opera’.

Use only those browsers/machines to access your website where you have installed this extension. 

Avoid visiting the website via tablet or mobile devices wherever possible, as this extension won’t work there. 

Ask all of your employees and suppliers to install this extension on their desktop/laptop computers.

Employees who are most likely to visit your website frequently are your web developers and web designers.

So make sure at least that they use the ‘Google Analytics Opt-out Add on’.

Testing your internal traffic block in Google Analytics

The ‘Google Analytics opt-out Add on’ disables the firing of Google Analytics tracking code. It does not remove the Google Analytics tracking code from web pages.

So if you use an add-on like ‘Ghostery’ (which display the list of all the analytics tag on a web page), it will still show you the Google Analytics tag.

But that does not mean that the GA tag has been fired.

So add-ons like ‘Ghostery’ are not the best tool to test whether the GA tag is firing or not. Use Google Tag Assistant.

Click on the ‘tag assistant icon in your browser and then check the ‘where to optimize‘ section. You should see the following message:

No Google Analytics HTTP responses because opted out code detected.

block google analytics internal traffic

This message validates that your Google Analytics tracking code has not fired because of your ‘Google Analytics Opt-out Add on’.

If you are brand new to Google Tag Assistant then read this article: Complete Guide to Google Tag Assistant 

Alternatively, disable the GA opt-out Add on before you do testing/debugging of your GA tracking and/or installation.

Because as long as this add on is enabled, the Google Analytics tag won’t fire.

Related Article: How to turn on IP Anonymization in Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager

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