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Google Analytics Confusing Sources?

Discussion in 'Google Analytics' started by lesterj, Jan 13, 2021 at 10:18 AM.

  1. #1
    Hi Everyone,
    I have an SEO client who is also doing a paid Google Ads campaign on his own. After optimizing the client's site we saw a huge rise in organic search traffic, especially from Google, going from 700-800 organic users/mo to 7,000 organic users/mo. His Google Ads traffic was 15k-36k/mo.

    In December, the client paused his Google Ads campaign for 3 days. Not only did his paid traffic drop to almost nothing (as expected), but so did every other source, including organic search. Google Organic search dropped from about 250/day to 30/day. Even Bing organic traffic dropped from about 80/day to less than 10/day. Referral and direct traffic data also dropped.

    Three days later, when the client restarted his Google Ads campaign, all the traffic data went back up to their levels before the pause.

    One additional piece of information is that the number of clicks Google Ads indicates is roughly the same as the number of clicks Google Analytics indicates in the Acquisition => Google Ads => Campaigns report (35,800 clicks). However, the number of users (23,250) and sessions (27,411) indicated in the Acquisition => Google Ads => Campaigns report is about 40% and 30% less than the number of clicks.

    Does anyone have any idea as to what would cause this?

    Is Google Analytics confusing traffic that is actually from Google Ads and mis-reporting it as organic search (and referral, direct traffic, etc.)?

    Your help is greatly appreciated.
    lesterj, Jan 13, 2021 at 10:18 AM IP