No Referring Link – Explained

Hi folks,

“Came From” Stats

Your StatCounter “Came From” stats provide you with information about how people are coming to your site.

In your “Came From” stats you will see a list of sites via which visitors come to your site. These sites which refer visitors to your site might be forums, blogs, search engines, directories or websites of any kind that provide links to your site. You may also see entries for “No Referring Link” – we’ll explain what this means in this post.

Indirect and Direct Visitors

Visitors to your website can arrive in two distinct ways. For example:

A Vistor Can Arrive at your site INDIRECTLY by:

  • Clicking though to your website from a Search Engine
  • Following a link to your site on a blog
  • Clicking a link in a forum where someone recommends your site

OR a Visitor Can Arrive at your site DIRECTLY by:

  • Typing your web address directly into their browser address bar
  • Clicking a bookmarked link to your site in their browser

Indirect Visitors

If a visitor arrives at your site via a search engine, the visitor has been referred to your site by the search engine therefore you will see a referring link from the search engine in your stats.


In other words, you will only see a referring link in your stats, if a visitor has been referred to your site by another website, blog, forum or search engine.

Direct Visitors

If a visitor arrives at your site by typing your website address directly into their browser, the visitor has NOT been referred to your site by any other site, therefore you will see a “No Referring Link” entry in your StatCounter stats.


In other words, if a vistor comes to your site directly (i.e. without being referred to your site by any other site), then there is no referring link for that visitor.

No Referring Link – what’s the significance?

There are a number of reasons why you could have a high proportion of “No Referring Link” entries in your stats. For example:

  • People may get to know your web address offline (e.g. in flyers or newspapers) so they simply go directly to your site rather than looking for your site in a search engine.
  • You may have a lot of returning visitors who have bookmarked your site so that they can quickly revisit it.

As usual, comments, questions and suggestions welcome!

To ensure that all referring links are captured, you should make sure that you have StatCounter code installed on all pages of your site. It is not sufficient to have StatCounter installed on your homepage only. This is because visitors may enter your site at any page not just your homepage.


  1. Thanks for explaining the “No Referring Link” thing. It’s really confusing when you see this as a high number and are wondering if that many people are typing in your web address everyday. It didn’t occur to me that it can come from a bookmark.

  2. Makes sense now. Thanks so much for the info and the service.

    Keep up the good work StatCounter Team.

  3. I am glad to read that your customers find or must find it
    easy to istall stats counter, I have work on this for one (1) hour
    and still not been able to install it.
    Glad I have not paid money for this, or I would be one mad cat???
    I am on your site because of PRO2


  4. Sou da Zona Norte de Porto Alegre
    Parabéns pelo blog.
    Sempre quando eu posso eu volto aqui.
    Abraços – Zona Norte, Porto Alegre

  5. I am new to statcounter amd i have found this really useful for me for checking daily u-dates.
    Awesome tool,very resourceful

  6. Hi you guys! I ve been using SC since its beginning and i gotta admit it s served me well always.
    Recently I have observed some weird Chineese links as referal links and was wondering how they have been inserted in the stats? Obviously they re either bots or a new mechanism for visitor attraction.
    any ideas?

  7. I am new to statcounter and i have found this really useful for me for checking daily updates.
    Awesome tool,very resourceful

  8. I believe you, I believe! Could this become doable to help you have your blog translated in to German? English is my own second language.

  9. I’ve been using statcounter for years. I think I still check for updates daily. An invaluable tool. Thank you!!!

  10. I have visitors that have no referring link but they’re not returning visitors either and I don’t think they’re typing in my address either so whats the explaination for that?

  11. Love your stats — they’re the best around and I’ve been using them for years. However, I’m not registering visits from Google Reader :(.

  12. Hi, I’ve used statcounter for years on blogs and I was wondering if there are any plans to create a set of API’s for ecommerce stores as this would be very helpful or would this be down to the developers of the stores and store platforms to develop?


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