FAQ: Referrer Reports Missing

My log data contains referrer information, but I don't see referrer reports, or search engines, or search phrases. Why not?

Short Answer

Sawmill includes referrer reports if the beginning of the log data includes referrers. If your log data starts without referrers, and adds it later, you won't see referrer reports. Create a new profile from the latest log file (with referrers), and change the log source to include all log data.

Long Answer

When a profile is created, Sawmill looks at the first few lines of the log data when determining which fields are present, and which reports to generate. If it sees a referrer field there, it will create a Referrer report, and Search Engines and Search Phrases reports, and other referrer-related reports.

This can be a problem if the log data does not contain referrer data at the beginning of the dataset. For instance, IIS often default to minimal logging (without referrers), and Apache often defaults to logging in Common Access Log Format (without referrers). If you later reconfigure the server to log referrers, Sawmill still won't know that, because the beginning of the log data does not contain referrers, and that's where it looks. So a profile created from the whole dataset will not report referrers, even though the later data contains referrer information.

The solution is to recreate the profile, and when it asks you where the log data is, point it to the most recent file. That file will certainly have referrer information at the beginning, so the referrer reports will be set up properly. After creating the profile, and before viewing reports or rebuilding the database, go to the Config for the profile and change the Log Source to include all your log data. Then view reports, and referrer reports will be included.