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Live.com Fake SERP Referrals Are Pissing Me Off

 |  Interwebs

Melissa and I had a short chat about Live.com search results in our stats a while ago. Long story short, a whole bucketload of search result click-throughs were showing up in our hits that were either a) irrelevant to our sites or b) were bullshit, because we weren’t ranked for that term anyway. This wasn’t particularly bothering me at the time — although obviously annoying — so I left it at that.

However, with the launch of rev.iew.me I’m obviously keeping an eye on referrals, hits, SERPs etc. I want the site to do well for the benefit of the users, not just for me. This is becoming impossible with live.com sending a fake/spoofed SERP referral every hour. My search engine referrals a littered with crap so it’s hard to tell fact from fiction, and I can’t even begin to imagine how that’s having an affect on hit counts/etc. The bastard of it is, Microsoft admitted to the referrer/cloaking spam so it’s not even a bug (this is intended behaviour!)

I’m sorely tempted to start blocking the Live.com bot. Despite the fact that this would eradicate any possibility of ranking in Live — oh noes, what a shame — at least my blood pressure would return to a sane level!

Jem Turner jem@jemjabella.co.uk +44(0)7521056376

13 comments so far

  1. Joe said:

    I’m getting them as well. Just random, one-word searches like “pretty”, “couple” and “night” popping up in my search referrals.

    I might block the Live-bot also. Like I care about M$’s shitty search engine. Who seriously even uses it?

  2. Dee said:


    SecFilterEngine On
    SecFilterSelective HTTP_Referer "search\.live\.com"

    Blocks the referrer, not the bot. :P

    It’s not like anyone actually uses Live for real searches, anyway.

  3. Mimi said:

    Block! Block! Block! That’s stupid, I haven’t read the article yet but I shall. Are they just going to continue to do this? Isn’t that wrong or illegal? I am not really knowledgeable about SEO related things, forgiveth me. :P

  4. Katie said:

    I have the same problem as Joe. It’s really getting on my nerves.. I think I will be blocking it as well, now that I know it’s a problem for other people too, and that MS isn’t going to do anything about it!

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