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SEO traffic seen Direct

Louis 04-28-16

SEO traffic seen Direct

[ Edited ]



We launched few weeks ago an A/B targeting traffic on our homepage excluding the url with a paramater. This was made to target SEO and Direct traffic. We use Google Universal Analytics, so I've added an optimizely custom dimension to track properly the marketing channel. 

However, it's seems that not all the SEO traffic is being allocated to SEO but a part of it is going to direct. I see that because when I compare traffic data Week over week, Homepage traffic seems suspeciously higher for direct and suspeciously lower for SEO. 

Do you know any trick to be sure that traffic is correctly allocated to the proper channel ?



Level 1

DavidS 04-29-16

Re: SEO traffic seen Direct

Hi Louis,


Thanks for reaching out!

First up, Optimizely doesn't make changes to the Google Analytics data itself, we simply fill a Google Analytics Custom Dimension that then gets added to the Google Analytics tracker on your website. 


Consequently, if you are simply setting up an A/B test on your homepage you should not experience channel discrepancies. The only thing that could cause this behavior is if you are running a redirect experiment within one of your internal pages (not your homepage domain). Do you think it is the case? 


To check that your Google Analytics integration is correctly set up, you will want to make sure you have properly checked the Google Analytics Universal integration in the Options menu. You'll also want to make sure the Custom Dimension is being correctly tagged on your page. You can do that by installing the Google Analytics Debugger and making sure that the correct Custom Dimension index gets filled in with Optimizely data (experiment ID and variation ID). 


Second, I am not aware of any trick to make sure traffic is correctly allocated to the proper channel - as Optimizely is not modifiying Google Analytics data it should have no impact. 


I hope that is helpful. Feel more than free to reply back with any additional questions at all.