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Can you count visitors that come from "forwarded" domains easily?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by craigiri, Feb 27, 2013.

  1. craigiri

    craigiri Well-Known Member

    As the title says - for instance....

    1. the new blog I took over had two domains pointing to the same blog. I made it one and use the forwarding (in godaddy) to refer the other one to the root of the one I use.
    How do I count?

    2. Same question if, for instance, I purchased a domain name close to the existing one (with or without an "s" on the end as an example) and forward it. In this case, the purchased URL never had any traffic, just possible typos when people type it in.

    3. A third instance - let's say I buy another small blog, do away with the content or roll it into mine, but forward the domain. How do I count.

    I know I could do it by some kind of redirect instead of forwarding, but wondering if there are better or simpler ways.
  2. Carlos

    Carlos Well-Known Member

    From my experience, more or less.

    When I put a URL frame with the domain that's simply a redirect domain.... I see it in google analytics.

    But when I do a full redirect of the domain, the redirecting domain name isn't well tracked, so I end[ed] up with less *like-minded" domain names in the analytics. So, therefore, the dominant domain name needs to be the one on server. As in, where most of the visits come from.

    [But on the flip coin, if there's more visitors coming from the redirected domain name, google will show it more. I think.]

    You have to determine this. The only thing I use the directed domain name for is to capture the "like-minded" domain name without confusing customers.

    Google shows options for multi-level domain tracking, or mutliple domain tracking, in analytics, but I'm scared as $#!^ to mess with those options.
  3. Anthony Parsons

    Anthony Parsons Well-Known Member

  4. Carlos

    Carlos Well-Known Member

  5. Anthony Parsons

    Anthony Parsons Well-Known Member

    First response: "The tracking code is the same. You have to do the forwarding (redirect) on the page, because if you do the redirect at the server level, the GA never loads on the bogus domain and you cannot track that page."

    In other words, you setup an account on your server, then forward the domain with tracking code in a root page (index.html)... easiest solution for tracking domain forwarding.
  6. Carlos

    Carlos Well-Known Member

    But, how are we going to redirect the domain to the end-domain? It seems like the index.html will only be read and won't go the intended domain?

    Here's the thing, when I redirect domains, I have the option of putting the full url of the domain.
  7. Anthony Parsons

    Anthony Parsons Well-Known Member

    .htaccess... domain redirect.
  8. craigiri

    craigiri Well-Known Member

    Oh, I was just using the godaddy forwarding......thingy. I didn't want to confuse goog with having the redirects on the actual server.....

    I'll look and see if the inbound goog reports show that stuff comes from those domains - maybe answer my own question!
  9. Carlos

    Carlos Well-Known Member

    I do the same, with Namecheap.
  10. digitalpoint

    digitalpoint Well-Known Member

    FYI - you can log Google Analytics server-side if you want via their "mobile websites" tracking system which doesn't run JavaScript or anything else on the client-side. I use it to track a few things, one of them is almost exactly what you are trying to do... It's a domain parking system where people selling their domains can CNAME their domain to one of our IPs and the system automatically redirects it to their domain sale/auction if they are selling it on our site (info on that here).

    For us, we look at the "Host" header being sent by the client, and internally log that as the referrer. Then our Google Analytics referrer report shows which domains are referring the most traffic via the parking.


    Since it's all done server-side, you can log whatever you want to Google Analytics, and then 301 redirect them along (or whatever you want to do).
    Anthony Parsons likes this.
  11. latebus

    latebus New Member

    I built a way to do this easily with no google anayticts involvement, check it out: http://www.gotresultsmarketing.com/...to-your-website-with-a-forwarding-domain-why/

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