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How to Block Yourself from Analytics to Get Accurate Web Data

Sep
29

Written by Rose Souders

Does your Direct traffic seem high in your Google Analytics? There could be multiple reasons for this (for example: dark social, using Bitly links, new press, etc), but one you might not have considered is that Google Analytics is picking up your own visits to your site. If you’re trying to get an accurate look at who is visiting your site or how well it’s performing, you’ll definitely need to make some adjustments and block yourself from analytics. Here are two different ways to filter out your own traffic in Google Analytics.

The Easiest: Google Analytics Opt-out Browser Add-on

If you’re not so comfortable in Google Analytics’ Admin section or with technical stuff, then you might consider installing Google’s Opt-out Add-on Chrome Extension. When installed, it tells the Google Analytics JavaScript not to send information for your web visitors using the extension. This means that when you visit your own site, Google Analytics will turn a blind eye and not track your sessions or movements.

If you’re using this, you’ll need to keep in mind that it will only work if you’re using the Google Chrome browser. If you’re one to hop on Safari or Firefox every now and then, then you’ll want to go with the second option, listed below. Also, keep in mind that this Chrome extension will not block out your mobile traffic. It will only work with Desktop traffic via Chrome if your extension is on.

The Best: Create a Google Analytics IP Address Filter

To cover your bases and block yourself from analytics, you’ll want to set up an IP Address filter. First, you need to know what your IP Address is.

Step 1: How to find your IP Address

Open up your browser and type into Google “what is my IP address”. Yes, it’s that easy! Google will spit out for you at the top of the search page. Copy it.

Step 2: How to set up the IP Address Filter

Now that you have your IP Address, you’ll need to head over to your Google Analytics account. Log in and then at the very bottom left of your screen, you’ll see a little gear icon that says “Admin” when you hover over it. Click it!

On the Admin page, there will be three columns of menus, but you’ll want to focus on the right menu labeled “View”. In the View menu column, click “Filters”, which is the 5th from the top.

Once on the Filters setup page, click the red button that says “+ ADD FILTER”. Now follow these steps:

  1. Make sure “Create new filter” is selected in the top section.
  2. Name your filter. I recommend labeling it based on your location or office. For example:
    “Potluck Office-IP Filter”
  3. Select “Predefined” for the filter type.
  4. Select Exclude on the left dropdown menu.
  5. In the middle dropdown menu, select “traffic from the IP addresses”.
  6. In the right dropdown menu, select “that are equal to”.
  7. Paste your IP address in the text box.
  8. Click the blue “Save” button!

It should look like this:

how to create a google analytics ip address filter

Voila! Now you have an IP Address filter that will block yourself from analytics. If you have multiple places that you work and view your website from, like home and office, then you should set up an IP address filter for each. IP Addresses are associated with WIFI networks so it will also block out any other computers from the same office. Yay!

It’s important to note that the filter doesn’t remove any historical data and will only block the traffic moving forward. I recommend marking down the date you set it up so that you can keep it in mind when you’re looking at your past website data.

That’s it! Now you have website data that shows what your customers are doing and how well your website is actually performing.

Feeling motivated? Trying reading “Is it working? How to track success with social media reporting.”, which goes into detail about how to use Google Analytics to track your web traffic from social media. Read more.