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Google Analytics change or Organic change?

8:57 pm on Jul 31, 2013 (gmt 0)

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joined:Jan 31, 2004
votes: 2

I'd be curious to know if anyone else has noticed a change in Google Analytics numbers starting yesterday, specifically a shift of visitors from the "Direct" category to the "Organic" category?

My Organic numbers have never been outside of a band of 54.1% to 68.3%, but mostly have stuck in the 59% to 64% band. Likewise, my direct numbers have never strayed from a band of 21.8% to 33.7% and are usually 25% to 31%.

Yesterday, I saw an Organic of 73.3% and a Direct of 16.7% - way, way out of whack from normal. No unusual events, and my overall traffic was pretty much where I'd expect it to be.

I know that it has been stated here that a certain class of traffic has been misreported in GA as Direct - I'm wondering if this issue has been corrected, if GA has a bug, or if I am seeing an inexplicable shift in Organic traffic?
3:19 pm on July 31, 2013 (gmt 0)

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joined:Aug 16, 2004
posts: 311
votes: 0

< moved from another location >

Google are messing with my mind...

For the past couple of days, I've had problems in my GWT tools account where all my internal links and details of external links showed 'no data'.

This made me panic a bit but assumed it was an error.

Then, last night, while checking my rankings, my site's positions had improved a lot (my site ranked well but has decreased significantly over the past 6 months).

My mood improved...lots of keywords improved in ranking by 1-2 pages and back to what I was used to seeing prior to recent updates (Penguin, etc).

However, this mood was short-lived as the SERPS seem to have reverted back to how they were?

Anyone have any ideas as to what I saw and why it didn't last? Pretty sure I wasn't imagining it...wishful thinking, and all that!

Mod's note: These posts, while different, as one is about an apparent Analytics blip and one about changes in GWT data, tell similar enough stories that I've grouped them together.

[edited by: Robert_Charlton at 3:18 am (utc) on Aug 1, 2013]

6:55 pm on Aug 2, 2013 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Jan 31, 2004
votes: 2

After 3 days, my "Organic" number has averaged 72%, up from an average of 62%. The traffic specifically came from my "Direct" number, which has dropped to 16% from 26%.

Can someone remind me what traffic Google had been previously mislabeling as Direct? Was it mobile search?
7:56 pm on Aug 2, 2013 (gmt 0)

Senior Member from US 

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

joined:Mar 30, 2005
votes: 200

Google's been labeling iOS search traffic as Direct for a while now. Finally seems to be fixed.


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