Direct Traffic numbers too high


I am looking into our web traffic analytics over the past 2 months and 76% of our overall traffic in Hubspot is coming from "direct traffic", with it only showing 16 total visits from email marketing. We have many email marketing campaigns running with a decent click through rate so this number should be higher (I just turned on the tracking code in links for email so I am hoping this resolves this issue)...but there are also only 100 visits from organic search. The organic search number feels way too low, and the direct traffic is way too high. It appears that our tracking code is installed correctly but I am not positive on that...what else should I check in to? I have gone through the other articles talking about direct traffic numbers being too high and have not found any of those suggestions helpful to our specific case. I checked and all of the tracking items are turned on. 

2 Replies 2
HubSpot Employee

Hi @kselby7 

That does seem high, though some sites do get a lot of direct traffic from traditional marketing etc. It sounds like you have maybe worked through everything in this article?


Some other things to check:

  • Is your Hubspot tracking code being implemented inside an iframe on your site?
  • Do you have Hubspot forms implemented on sites outside of your domain which don't include your Hubspot tracking code?
  • Are you sending traffic to your site via any other potentially untracked sources (that don't include UTM parameters) such as email campaigns outside of Hubspot, web banners (though they should show as referrals), print ads etc.?

If none of the above helps if you could share a URL to your site I can see if I can spot any other issues.

Matthew Shepherd

Senior Inbound Consultant

Professional Services | HubSpot

Contributor | Gold Partner



We also experienced this problem for a while back in 2018. Not sure if this is the same situation, but for us, the culprit was from email bots clicking our logo in our emails, which was taking them to our homepage. For some reason, this was counting traffic from emails as Direct all the time (maybe because the source for the bots couldn't actually be tracked?), which really messed with our analytics.


Are you noticing that many clicks from emails are not necessarily to the content you're sending them (ex. a blog post) but instead to your company logo for instance? See if there are any common patterns with the same domains clicking the same way in every email. That could be a big indicator of bots. 


Additionally, what types of emails are you usually sending out? For instance, are there links in your emails leading to your website? One common issue is if the links that contacts are clicking are sending them to an HTTP page, as opposed to a secure HTTPS page. This will typically count the traffic as Direct. 


I also found a post from HubSpot that also goes into some detail on why traffic is labeled as Direct and how email traffic may not always be labeled correctly. This could be worth a quick read as well!