List DuckDuckGo as Organic Search in Google Analytics reporting

Track visits from Duckduckgo.com as organic search in Google Analytics. List DuckDuckGo as organic rather then referral in universal Analytics

You might have noticed that Google Analytics shows visitors through duckduckgo.com (source) to your website as referrals rather than organic search. The reason for duckduckgo.com being shown as the referral as it’s HTTPS encrypted.

But what does that means? in simple words – when you click on a result shown by this search engine, it will directly use the link to that particular site as if it’s hyperlinked into DDG website.

Unlike other search engines like Google, Bing, or Yahoo which redirect them to the particular website after a click action.

This unique redirection thus sends information to Google Analytics as an organic search, which in the case of DDG is not possible. Hence shows the results as a direct referral.

Though duckduckgo.com search engine has its own private encryption policy. However, if you get a good amount of visitors through this source then you can set DuckDuckGo as an organic search in Google Analytics.

Set up Admin tab settings

  • Log in to your GA account – www.google.com/analytics
  • Click on Admin tab

    Google Analytics Admin

    Google Analytics Admin

  • In Property click on Traffic info and then Organic search sources
  • Click on Add Search engine and create & fill the data form
  1. Add Search engine name: DuckDuckGo
  2. Domain name contains: duckduckgo.com
  3. Query parameter: uddg

    Add Organic serachAdd Organic serach

    Add Organic search

As DuckDuckGo is keen on keeping the privacy of users, it’s not possible to get the keyword information in Google Analytics report. Parameter uddg is required for GA to differentiate between search VS non-search traffic source.

The keyword will be still appearing in GA but as ‘not set’ which could be preferably changed to ‘not provided’ using view filters, if needed.

Setting up an advanced filter

Choose filter under option views and hit New Filter option

  • Give the Filter a name
  • Add regex expression to the Campaign Source: (http:\/\/)?(([^.]+)\.)?duckduckgo.com
  • Tick the boxes as shown in the picture below and you will see correct filter GA reports.

    Filter DuckDuckGo

    Filter DuckDuckGo

Please note that domain name is case-sensitive, make sure to enter duckduckgo.com (all in small letters). And enable “Override Output Field” checkbox.

Once you set up this filter and publish the changes, all the forthcoming traffic from DDG will be tagged under organic source. The historical data available in GA will still appear as the referral as a filter will be applicable from the date of creation.

Whats your thought?

I prefer personally prefer to tag my DDG traffic as Organic since the user driving from the source are actually searching for the content and landing on my blog.

If you’ve any other thoughts or ideas to segregate DDG traffic, then please post in below comment. I’d really love to hear you!

If you've any thoughts on List DuckDuckGo as Organic Search in Google Analytics reporting, then feel free to drop in below comment box.
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Hey there, I hope you doing awesome! I’m Kushal Azza, a certified digital analytics professional, technophile, a blogger & your host at @restoreBin

2 Responses

  1. Sydney says:

    Are you saying we need both the filter and organic search sources method?

    • Nikhil says:

      A sort of, as we need to filter out DDG searches and set keyword as ‘not provided’.

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