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Site Getting Visits From Google Employees?

     
2:34 am on Sep 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

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I started this site about one month ago and I've been link building pretty aggressively (white-hat only, no paid links), and for the past couple of weeks, I'm seeing visits from Mountain View, California come in about once every few days. Could these be Google employees? I saw a thread in this forum from someone with the exact same issue [webmasterworld.com...] and according to it, the visits were from preview visitors. What are preview visitors?

[edited by: tedster at 2:37 am (utc) on Sep 14, 2012]
[edit reason] make link clickable [/edit]

8:38 am on Sept 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Administrator phranque is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

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welcome to WebmasterWorld, plc90210!

where are you "seeing visits from Mountain View" - analytics?
analytics should not be showing visits by GWP, so these would be real people if seen in GA.
have you checked your server access logs to see what user agent string was recorded with these requests?

Google Web Preview - Search Engine Spider and User Agent Identification forum:
http://www.webmasterworld.com/search_engine_spiders/4223018.htm [webmasterworld.com]
12:31 pm on Sept 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Senior Member netmeg is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

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I get a ton of these, some are real and some are WMT and some are preview (the screenshot you sometimes get when you mouse over a result in Google)

You mostly see them in programs like Statcounter.

I notice that I get hit by a Google visit every time I post something to Google+ too (and it must read javascript in order to be picked up by Statcounter).
2:51 pm on Sept 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

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I use Woopra for my analytics, that's where I was seeing the visits come from.

How do I check my server access logs?
2:53 pm on Sept 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Senior Member netmeg is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

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You have to get your logs from wherever your site is hosted, and start reading them. If you get a lot of traffic, and you don't know what you're looking for, it's not going to be easy at first. But with practice you'll know how to look for specifics.
4:06 pm on Sept 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Senior Member piatkow is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

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How do I check my server access logs?

Log in to your account with your hosting service. Some free or low cost hosting services may not make the logs available.
4:16 pm on Sept 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Administrator phranque is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

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if you have a web-based control panel application for your hosting account there might be a feature that facilitates log file downloads.
6:52 pm on Sept 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

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One thing I noticed when checking the logs was that the operating system & browser are "unknown" for these visits from Mountain View. Also, the screen resolution is 1024x1024. Does this information provide any insights as to whether the visits are from actual humans or something else?
 

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