Block Gq-catalog.gq referrer spam in Google Analytics
What is Gq-catalog.gq?
Gq-catalog.gq is a referrer spam URL that is utilized by an affiliate of a malicious advertising platform. In July of 2016 we broke the story concerning malicious referral links targeting Google Analytics data and Gq-catalog.gq is one of the latest URLs in this category.
Gq-catalog.gq referral spam in Google Analytics can be an issue for anyone who values their website’s real data. Gq-catalog.gq referrals are designed to mix fraudulent web traffic data into Google Analytics reports. If you visit Gq-catalog.gq in your web browser you will be forwarded through an advertising network to a random website. The website may promote malware and rogue programs.
If you notice Gq-catalog.gq referrals in Google Analytics it does not mean that anyone was referred to your website from Gq-catalog.gq. Gq-catalog.gq referral traffic does not actually land on your website. It is a type of web traffic known as ghost traffic that creates phantom web hits.
The reason why Gq-catalog.gq is spamming your website’s Google Analytics data is to get your attention and persuade you to visit the URL in your browser. The website that Gq-catalog.gq forwards to contains paid-services that web masters and anyone who owns a website might essentially find relevant.
However, we do not recommend to trust known spammers and websites that engage in referrer spam. Referrer spam is a blackhat SEO tactic that disregards your website’s data in order to promote spam content. Someone who engages in referrer spam does not care about ruining your website’s analytical data. They would rather promote their website despite the repercussions and acquire you as a customer by any means necessary. Referrer spam is not a tactic used by legitimate and trustworthy companies and websites.
Referrer spammers typically target your website’s data for several reasons:
- Referrer spammers want to promote a website and want you to visit the webpage or search for it online through Google search engine results pages.
- Referrer spammers want to boost their rank on Google search engine results pages by creating backlinks. They do this by logging requests into your website’s access log, which is then crawled by Google’s indexing bots and seen as a backlink to the spam site.
Gq-catalog.gq Google Analytics referrer spam can ruin your website’s analytical data measured by Google Analytics. It can affect most of the data in your reports with fake web traffic and data. For example, Gq-catalog.gq referrals will appear to land on a single webpage on your website and leave from the same website, which will create a 100% bounce rate. If your website is targeted by referrer spammers you may not be able to identify your website’s bounce rate. The same can be said about other data measured in most Google Analytics reports.
How to block Gq-catalog.gq referrer spam
Stop Gq-catalog.gq referral spam in Google Analytics by creating an exclude filter to block Gq-catalog.gq referrer spam at the campaign source. This is the method recommended by Google to block referrer spam in your Google Analytics account.
1. Open your Google Analytics account and go to the Admin tab> Cick Filters on the right side in the VIEW section.
2. Click the + ADD FILTER button to create a new exclude filter.
3. Add Gq-catalog.gq or something you can easily remember as the Filter Name.
4. Select the Custom Filter Type.
5. In Filter Field, find and select Campaign Source in the list. In the Filter Pattern text box, add Gq-catalog.gq and click the blue Save button on the bottom of the webpage. To add multiple URLs to the same filter you can make a Filter Pattern similar to this with a | between each URL: Example.com | Example\.com | Gq-catalog.gq