Huge website traffic drop off in November 2019. Looking for help to explain.

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Regular Contributor

I'm running the Traffic Analytics report in Hubspot from 09/01/19 - 12/02/2019, frequency of Daily. I'm looking at the top graph by Sessions.

 

From this report in Hubspot the traffic to my website appears fairly steady and has an almost predictable pattern.

 

When I look at this same report in Google Analytics, I have a severe drop off that began in November 2019. For example, on November 18, on the Hubspot report there's a session spike that shows 232 sessions that day. That same day in Google shows 35 sessions.

 

I realize that Hubspot and Google do not report the same way. My ask today is if you have any insight as to why Google is suddenly showing very little traffic to my website while Hubspot is still showing the predictable pattern and no significant changes.

 

Did something change in GA that I am not aware of? 

 

Thanks!

 

Sept2019-Dec2019-Sessions-by-Hubspot.PNG09/01/19 - 12/02/2019 Sessions by HubspotSept2019-Dec2019-Sessions-by-Google.PNG09/01/19 - 12/02/2019 Sessions by Google (compared to previous year)

3 Accepted solutions

Accepted Solutions
Community Thought Leader | Diamond Partner

Hi @Crystal_Hopper 

 

Interesting - hope you get a few views and suggestions here. First thing, have you checked that your GA tracking code is still on all pages? I'm assuming not everything is hosted on HubSpot, otherwise it would be all or nothing with the tracking code on it and you cleary have some visits being logged. 

Phil Vallender | Inbound marketing for B2B technology companies
Regular Contributor | Platinum Partner

Hi @Crystal_Hopper , 

 

When looking at your results from HubSpot and Google Analytics, it's recommended to focus on the trends between the two systems — not comparing X sessions from Google Analytics to Y sessions in HubSpot. 

 

Please take a look at this resource for more information about reporting differences in HubSpot en Google Analytics. 

 

Hope this helps! 

 

Kind regards, 

Kim 

 

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Kim | Heuvel Marketing


The inbound strategist among HubSpot partners


Regular Contributor

Thank you for your response. It started me off in the right direction. We did recently have a Hubspot Partner reword our website and your post made me wonder if they changed the way the GA code was distributed across the site. Because that would explain this issue. 

 

However, the GA code was in place where it ought to be in the Website Settings according to this page (https://knowledge.hubspot.com/cos-general/add-your-google-analytics-code-to-your-hubspot-pages-or-bl...). Also on this Hubspot page is an info box with the answer. I've bolded the actual text that had the answer to my issue:

Please note: effective as of November 1, 2019, adding your Google Analytics tracking ID in the Tracking integrations section allows HubSpot to control the Google Analytics script on HubSpot-hosted pages. HubSpot cannot control the Google Analytics script on any externally hosted pages and on HubSpot-hosted pages where the script is added using other steps (e.g., Site header HTML).

When you've a cookie policy requiring visitor opt-in, the Google Analytics script will not load on a HubSpot-hosted page until the visitor opts in, and if the visitor does not opt in, Google Analytics data will not be tracked for them.

 

Obviously, I did not pay close enough attention to a notification that most likely came out before this change took effect. Our company does not do business in the EU and I have edited our Default Cookie Policy and turned off the Opt-In requirement. Already I am seeing a change in the traffic pattern on my website. I know this will continue to correct itself as cookies--or the lack thereof--expire and the browsers reset. 

 

Thank you for making time to respond and giving me a viable direction to start looking in.

4 Replies 4
Community Thought Leader | Diamond Partner

Hi @Crystal_Hopper 

 

Interesting - hope you get a few views and suggestions here. First thing, have you checked that your GA tracking code is still on all pages? I'm assuming not everything is hosted on HubSpot, otherwise it would be all or nothing with the tracking code on it and you cleary have some visits being logged. 

Phil Vallender | Inbound marketing for B2B technology companies
Regular Contributor

Thank you for your response. It started me off in the right direction. We did recently have a Hubspot Partner reword our website and your post made me wonder if they changed the way the GA code was distributed across the site. Because that would explain this issue. 

 

However, the GA code was in place where it ought to be in the Website Settings according to this page (https://knowledge.hubspot.com/cos-general/add-your-google-analytics-code-to-your-hubspot-pages-or-bl...). Also on this Hubspot page is an info box with the answer. I've bolded the actual text that had the answer to my issue:

Please note: effective as of November 1, 2019, adding your Google Analytics tracking ID in the Tracking integrations section allows HubSpot to control the Google Analytics script on HubSpot-hosted pages. HubSpot cannot control the Google Analytics script on any externally hosted pages and on HubSpot-hosted pages where the script is added using other steps (e.g., Site header HTML).

When you've a cookie policy requiring visitor opt-in, the Google Analytics script will not load on a HubSpot-hosted page until the visitor opts in, and if the visitor does not opt in, Google Analytics data will not be tracked for them.

 

Obviously, I did not pay close enough attention to a notification that most likely came out before this change took effect. Our company does not do business in the EU and I have edited our Default Cookie Policy and turned off the Opt-In requirement. Already I am seeing a change in the traffic pattern on my website. I know this will continue to correct itself as cookies--or the lack thereof--expire and the browsers reset. 

 

Thank you for making time to respond and giving me a viable direction to start looking in.

Regular Contributor | Platinum Partner

Hi @Crystal_Hopper , 

 

When looking at your results from HubSpot and Google Analytics, it's recommended to focus on the trends between the two systems — not comparing X sessions from Google Analytics to Y sessions in HubSpot. 

 

Please take a look at this resource for more information about reporting differences in HubSpot en Google Analytics. 

 

Hope this helps! 

 

Kind regards, 

Kim 

 

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Did this post help solve your problem? If so, please mark it as a solution









Kim | Heuvel Marketing


The inbound strategist among HubSpot partners


Regular Contributor

Thank you for making time to respond. Your point is well taken and I do not typically compare apples to apples when looking at stats like these. I was only doing it this time because of the very significant change; in my website traffic pattern the numbers typically not that far apart. But, for anyone else who might read this thread in the future, this is a good reminder and should be followed.