Google Analytics is the best way to track your readers on your site – what they do, what they don’t do, where they go, how much time they spend on your site, and so much more. But you can muddy your analytics waters by also tracking YOUR usage.
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By excluding yourself (excluding your IP addresses) from Google Analytics tracking, you are ensuring that your data actually represents your site visitors.
Don’t Use A Plugin For Google Analytics
First things first: you do NOT want a Google Analytics plugin to help you on your site. You will want to go directly to analytics.google.com for your data.
You will get the most accurate information straight from the source (Google) and keeping your site running fast and smooth.
Plugins like MonsterInsights and Google Search Kit can slow down your entire website.
However, if you do use one of these plugins, make sure you only place your Google Analytics (and Search Console) code in one place.
If you have the code in the plugin AND within your code or a header code manager (like Header Footer Code Manager – free), you will see duplicate tracking in Google Analytics (meaning, each visitor will look like 2).
What Are IP Addresses?
If you don’t know, IPs are basically your web address for each device you use.
There are 2 types of IP addresses:
- Public (or external): Provided by your Internet Service Provider (ISP) to basically name your network.
- Local (or internal): These are IPs assigned by things like your home router giving each device on the network a unique identifier.
It will look something like 10.17.35 or 10.26.87.1.
Now just to be a little more confusing, there are 2 versions out there for IPs: IPv4 and IPv6.
You just need the IPv4 version (which all have).
If you are tech savvy and want to learn more about IP addresses and how they are all based on TCP/IP, I’m not the best source to explain this (lol). But you can learn more about TCP/IP in this article.
How to Find Your IP Addresses
So for most of us, you will need to find the IP for your computer, laptop, tablets, and smartphones (whichever you use to access your website).
The easiest way to detect your IP is to merely search “what is my IP” in Google and you will see it listed in your search results.
Or, you can go to something like whatsmyipaddress.com and it will automatically display.
Both these methods will only show you your Public IP which is all you need.
There are other methods for detecting your IP based on your computer type, operating system, and so much more.
So try one of the two methods above and if that doesn’t work, Google detecting your IP on your computer and operating system and there are tons of tutorials out there (this blog post would be endless if I wrote them all out!).
Keep in mind that your Internet Service Provider (ISP) may change your IP address without you knowing. Most will not do this (it can cause all sorts of connectivity issues), but it’s good to know it can happen!
TIP: Make sure to check your IP address on your wifi network AND your network!
How to Block IPs in Google Analytics
Ok this is going to look very complicated, espeically if you are new to Google Analytics.
1) Login to Google Analytics
Head on over to Google Analytics and login with whichever account you used to add the code to your site for verification.
If you have multiple properties, just repeat this process for each one.
2) Navigate to Filters
Select the Admin menu (lower left-hand corner) > All Filters > Add Filter
3) Create Your IP Exclude Filter
Now you just need to fill out informaiton about the filter you are creating.
It looks intimidating, but it’s pretty simple for excluding IPs.
- Add a name to your filter: this can be anything you want but should tell you which device the IP is for in case you need to edit it later
- Leave the Filter Type as “predefined”
- From the dropdowns under Filter Type, select “Exclude then in the next one “traffic from the IP addresses” then finally “contains”
- Enter your IP address in the field provided
Then scroll down a bit and select “All Website Data” and the arrow (“Add”) to move it over. If you have more than one view set up, bring them all over so they are all excluded.
Click Save and you’re done!
Congratulations, you just blocked yourself from being tracked on your own website.
4) Test Your IP Filter
Now that your filter is in place, head on over to your site and look at a specific page (maybe one that you know doesn’t get a lot of traffic).
Basically, you just want to check your analytics and see if that action or pageview was tracked for you.
Look good? No change in the numbers after? You’re done!
Alternative Methods to Block IP Tracking
There is a browser extension you can also use to block your IP from being tracked. However, this will only work on desktop.
As an example, there is one called Block Yourself from Analytics and it supports many browser types. You just flag your site in the extension to block tracking.
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