What are robot clicks?

The internet is full of robots that perform important functions, and will frequently open links to generate previews and check for spam.

Many robots announce themselves as such (such as 'Googlebot' or 'Facebookhit'), and so we know these aren't human visitors.

However, some bots are designed to look like humans, and it's up to us to try to figure out whether they are real or not.

How do I filter out robots from my traffic reports?

Use the 'Filter robots' button at the top right of the traffic reports.

Exclude robots button
Exclude robots button

Block robots altogether

In general, we don't recommend this.

There are a number of 'good' bots whose purpose it is is to check for spam. If a good bot finds it has been blocked, your link may be marked as spam regardless, so proceed with caution.

Blocking bots will also prevent custom social media previews from working on most platforms, as a bot is required to open the link to generate the preview.

How to block bots

  1. Create a New Link
  2. Under Block bots & spiders, enable Block robots.
  3. Robots will now see a 404 Not Found page.
Blocking robots
Blocking robots

Frequently Asked Questions about Bot Clicks

Why are robots clicking on my link?

These are almost always to generate previews and check for spam.

Should I block robots?

In general, you should allow robots to visit your link, unless you have a good reason not to.

Blocking robots can cause your link to become flagged as spam on social networks/email clients etc.

Why is the majority of my traffic bots?

Social networks, email campaigns and SMS campaigns tend to be victims of spam, and as a result the tech behind these platforms open links a lot to check the destination is what we say it is.

Usually, the quantity of bots is static, and will represent a small fraction of your traffic as your traffic increases, in absolute terms.

Do bots count against my click limit on Linkly?

Yes. It costs us the same to monitor and redirect traffic, regardless of the source.

Why do I not see these bots on Google Analytics?

Google Analytics data is not complete, as it relies on browser javascript and user consent to track.

Both bots and Google Analytics are designed to exclude bots from the data.

Linkly, by comparison, records all traffic through your link and lets you determine how to interpret it.

How does Linkly know if a user is a bot?

We look at the internet connection. If it looks like it has originated from a server farm, we classify this as a bot.

I'm using a VPN and now my links are blocked

Cheap VPNs route traffic through data centers. Linkly blocks traffic from data centers as its likely to be a bot.

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