How to Get Rid of semalt.com in Your Analytics Reports

semalt.com is not real traffic.

Referrer spam from semalt.com
Referrer spam from semalt.com

If you check your Google Analytics reports, chances are you’ll see lots of referrals coming from semalt.semalt.com or a similar domain. Semalt claims to be an ‘analytics service’ but what they really do is muck up the statistics in your analytics reports by artificially inflating the page bounce rate (you’ll see the bounce rate from this referrer is 100%). Typically bounce rate is between 30 and 70%; if it’s going up dramatically, check for semalt.com in your referrers list.

How to Block Semalt Using .htaccess

This is the way I do it, and it’s worked on all my own WordPress sites; this seems to be the most reliable way to handle the problem. To use this method, you’ll need an FTP connection to your hosting account. Download the file .htaccess to your computer (it’s in the root directory of your WordPress installation).

Open up .htaccess in a text editor and add the following:

# block visitors referred from semalt.com
RewriteEngine on
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} semalt.com [NC]
RewriteRule .* – [F]

Save .htacess (making sure the file name stays exactly the same) and upload it to your site, overwriting the old file. That should do it.

Other Ways to Block Semalt

If editing a file isn’t your cup of tea, some sites suggest adding semalt.com as a filter in Google Analytics. However, this has not worked for me; I had to use the .htaccess method to get it to go away completely.

A third possible method is by adding an exclusion in Google Analytics. To do that, open the View Settings for your website property and look for ‘Bot Filtering.’ Tick the checkbox, then Save your new settings. It will block known bots from your site reports. I have not used this myself though, so can’t speak to how well it works.

Note: at this time I’m also seeing a lot of traffic from the referrer buttons-for-website.com, this is another spam referrer you may want to block using the same methods above.

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