At NS8, people often ask us how to prevent all bots from visiting their website. Although this is theoretically possible, it is difficult and expensive to implement due to the changing nature of bots and the internet in general. Blocking all bot traffic would run the risk of triggering false positives that would stop real customers, as well as potentially creating SEO issues by blocking the friendly bots employed by search engines to crawl and index websites. Rather than blocking bots entirely, we believe it's more valuable to identify existing bots to be aware of their activity and identify issues and trends with sources of traffic.
Rather than preventing all bots from visiting your website, you can protect your store from malicious bot activity by building order rules and adjusting your settings to manage suspicious users. The Valid vs. Suspicious Users slider allows you to calibrate the score threshold for valid traffic. Depending on the threshold you determine, most bots will fall under the category of suspicious traffic, allowing you to filter bot activity from your data reports. This is useful for reviewing and downloading data that has been cleansed of low-quality traffic so you can optimize your analysis of campaign traffic, website activity, and order history.
You can hide the data pertaining to bot traffic using Customize Columns and the Data Filter tool found on many pages in NS8, including the Suspicious Sessions page, Campaign Activity page, and Sessions Timeline page.
To block bots from your reports, try filtering data by these attributes:
- Valid: Whether a session was valid or not, based on the Valid vs. Suspicious Users slider in Settings. Updates to this setting will not retroactively adjust the attribute for previous sessions.
- Primary User Risk Factor: The primary risk factor associated with a suspicious user, or "None" if no specific risks were found. You may find certain risk factors are associated with bot traffic and wish to filter them accordingly.
- Score: You can use the score itself as your primary filter for removing bots and other invalid traffic from your view. A score below 100 is a known bot, hidden session, or other form of low-quality traffic. A score above 700 shows all the attributes of a real human user. A good starting point would be to filter scores below 300.
You can use these attributes (and many more) in NS8 to better understand your website's traffic. If you have further questions, use the chat icon to contact us.
Updated about 1 year ago