- 1. What is Duplicate Content?
- 2. Why is Duplicate Content Important?
- 3. How To Determine Duplicate Content Issues?
- 4. How To Fix Duplicate Content Issues?
- 5. What are The Best Practises to Avoid Duplicate Content?
- 6. What Are The Impacts of Duplicate Content For Your SEO Strategy?
- 7. How Can Our Expert Team Help You To Fix Duplicate Content Issues?
What is Duplicate Content?
As developments within the world of SEO and content marketing grow, and brands and businesses become more aware of how their online presence can impact their content strategy, it is becoming more and more important to be aware of different elements that can harm your overall online marketing strategies. When it comes to content, search engines are becoming more aware every day of what good and relevant content looks like, with new ways of indexing and checking data getting more advanced with every algorithm update. One of the most harmful aspects that can impact your SEO and the overall effectiveness of the content that you produce is duplicate content on websites.
Duplicate content refers to content that appears on more than one URL, across different spaces on the internet. This can be from duplicates on your own website or it could be from the same or similar content that appears on another website. Duplicate content can be caused by a variety of different things and it is extremely important that brands and businesses are able to pick up on when these kinds of issues arise and have a good idea of how to fix them. Duplicate content is not always done with malicious intent, and very often it is an issue with product pages whereby different brands are using the manufacturer’s product descriptions within their own product information! Duplicate content is not just something that occurs when competitors are writing in a similar way duplicate content on the same site is also a big issue when it comes to your SEO. Whether your content has been copied or there are issues with your own site and the way that content is being produced and released, solving issues surrounding this problem is vital!
Why is Duplicate Content Important?
Having a good understanding of what duplicate content is and how to avoid making errors that may lead to these issues occurring is vital for website owners. Having duplicate content can lead to confusion around which pages to rank and it may impact your SEO. When it comes to search engines, algorithms have adapted and developed in such a way that content has become a very important aspect to be aware of, and having duplicate content is detrimental to both the quality of your website and the rankings that it may get on search engine results pages. When content is duplicated, search engines do not know which content to rank higher on results pages, and very often, both pages will lose rankings. If you have content duplicated across your own website in an attempt to seem more authoritative over a specific topic, you may want to adjust your content so that it is not being confused. Search engines may also be confused and unsure of where to send link metrics as they are unaware of whether the duplicate content suggests that only one page should be directed to or multiple pages. These aspects can be extremely harmful to SEO and rankings for search queries may be directed to the wrong page, leading to the lowering of the user experience.
Is Duplicate Content Bad For SEO?
You may be asking yourself “does duplicate content affect SEO” and how does this happen? The answer to this is yes, it definitely does. Search engines rank certain results according to the information that search engine crawlers provide through the indexing of pages, and when there is duplicate content, it can confuse them. Both the rank and quality of links will lower, ensuring that rankings on search engine results pages will also be affected. When it comes to inbound links, if a website has multiple versions of the same content, these links may be spread out across multiple versions of the same content, and this lowers your authority. When it comes to links, you want as many high-quality links as possible being directed to your webpage, and if these links are spread out across multiple versions of your website, you are lowering your chance of being recognised as an authoritative site. This has a profound and negative impact on your SEO and overall rankings on search engine results pages!
How To Determine Duplicate Content Issues?
When it comes to looking at how to check for duplicate content on websites, having a duplicate content checker tool on your side to monitor whether or not your content is being duplicated, across your own site or another, can help you ensure that duplicate content issues do not affect your overall site health and SEO. Whether you have duplicate content on the same site or have another site that is duplicating your own content, it is important that you are aware of the issues surrounding this content problem. The following are a few tools and ways that can help to pick up on and solve the issues surrounding duplicate content.
Use Google Search Console
Google Search Console is a great tool to use if you are hoping to find a way to pick up on duplicate content issues. This tool is able to determine where you rank for certain search queries on search engine results pages and help you figure out any issues that may be impacting your rankings. Whether you have duplicated webpages on your own site that are interfering with your ranking or are hoping to find out if any other website is using similar content to your own, Google Search Console is able to help find any issues relating to duplicate content.
Use Crawler Tools
Crawler tools work in a very similar way to search engine crawlers and they are able to make their way through your website and pick up on any issues that a search engine crawler would. Using crawler tools provides you with vital information about your website, and any issues that may be interfering with your ranking will be shown through using these kinds of crawler tools. As a crawler makes its way through your website, it can identify issues with your content, URLs and many other features, all of which can determine whether you have duplicate or similar content on your website. Using these kinds of tools to fix issues on your webpage can be a great way to improve your SEO, your rankings and the experience that your users have on your website!
Care About URL Variations
When monitoring your webpage by using click tracking and analytical tools, very often, issues can crop up that may cause duplicate content issues. URL variations occur when the same URL is repeated, creating a page with a URL that is exactly the same. Though you may not see this duplication, users may be redirected to an alternate version of your website. Another way that URLs are duplicated is through print-only versions of the same webpage. These versions seem to be from a different URL but they will have exactly the same content, thus creating a duplicate content issue. Being aware of the different ways that content can be duplicated across different URL variations will ensure that you avoid tactics that result in this issue!
How To Fix Duplicate Content Issues?
Now that we have a good understanding of how duplicate content issues can impact the content on a webpage, it is now time to look at how we can rectify these different issues. The following are a few ways that you can fix duplicate content issues on your website.
Do a 301 redirect
If you have duplicate pages that you cannot delete, it is important that you ensure that users are not taken to this webpage and that the content is not included when a search engine crawler indexes your webpage. Using a 301 redirect will redirect users to the page that you want them to be on and ensure that the content that you have on your webpage is unique and not copied over to another webpage that users can visit. When using a 301 redirect, you are combining all of the copied versions of a page into one and this means that they are no longer competing against one another and being indexed as separate pages.
One of the best and most effective duplicate content tips to ensure you know about is the use of canonical tags. Canonical tags are tags that tell search engines which pages are duplicates and which is the master page, ensuring that search engine crawlers know which page you want to be indexed. This tag is extremely useful and can help to avoid duplicate copies being indexed and compete against the page that you want to appear on search engine results pages!
What are The Best Practises to Avoid Duplicate Content?
There are many different ways that you can avoid duplicate content negatively impacting the experience that a user has with your webpage and your SEO, and how you use these different strategies can be the reason you succeed or fail. The following are just a few of the best ways that you can ensure that you avoid having duplicate content on your website.
Watch For The Same Content on Different URLs
One of the most common issues with duplicate content is that the same content appears on different URLs on a website. Having content appear on more than one page is extremely confusing for search engine crawlers, and you will often find that pages from the same website will begin competing with one another on search engine results pages. To be sure that the page you want to appear for certain searches is correct, it is important that you are aware of duplicate content appearing across different URLs or pages on your website!
Check Indexed Pages
By being aware of which pages are being indexed on your website you can keep up to date with which pages are being crawled and are ranking on search engine results pages. Checking your indexed pages is a great way to do this, and if you find that pages are being indexed with duplicate content, be sure that you solve this issue by using a canonical tag or 301 redirects.
Make Sure Your Site Redirects Correctly
If you are using a 301 redirect to stream users to the correct page on your website, the one that you want to be crawled, you need to be sure that the redirect is in working order and that there are no issues with the redirection. Ensuring that the code is written correctly and that the redirect happens quickly will ensure that this addition does not negatively impact the user experience.
Keep An Eye Out For Similar Content
It is important that you are aware as to whether or not your content is being copied or stolen from your website and used on another, doing Google searches of your content and monitoring what comes up in these searches can help to ensure you are aware if similar content is being produced.If you are concerned that your information and content is being copied and used on another website, there are ways that you can get accreditation or ask for the information to be removed. The first step would be to contact the webmaster of the page that you believe is using your content as its own and ask for the information on the website to be either accredited to you or ask for it to be taken off of the website, as this will ensure that the copied content does not interfere with your ranking and SEO. Another way to ensure that search engines are sure that you are the source of the content being created is to use canonical tags that are self-referencing as this will ensure that search engines are aware of where the information came from and how it is used.
What Are The Impacts of Duplicate Content For Your SEO Strategy?
Many may be thinking “how does duplicate content affect SEO” and why is it an important thing to monitor when it comes to performance? duplicate content and SEO are two concepts that impact one another, and having duplicate content can greatly impact how effective your overall SEO performance is. If the content is duplicated, search engines are confused by which page they should rank and you may be splitting your chance of ranking highly with two lower rankings pages. Search engines are not likely to rank two pages with the exact same content highly on search results pages, and your SEO may suffer when these issues are not noticed and fixed quickly.
Can People Get a Duplicate Content Penalty?
While search engines do not directly penalise for duplicate content, it can greatly impact the amount of traffic that is streamed to your web pages through organic search results. It is vital that you keep up to date with the content that you are producing across your website and ensure that none of it is repeated across different pages as this can cause different pages to rank for the same thing, splitting your chances of being ranked or ranking highly for pages that may not contain the most important information.
How Can Our Expert Team Help You To Fix Duplicate Content Issues?
To avoid issues whereby content is duplicated either across your own website or on another, it is important that you have a team behind you who can help to monitor and fix any duplicate content issues! Whether it is monitoring whether other websites are using your own content as your own or streamlining web pages through 301 redirect or canonical tags, having a team who can quickly and effectively monitor and fix these kinds of problems can be the determining factor as to whether you succeed or fail as an online platform. With our professional SEO consulting and SEO copywriting team, Markethinkers is able to do all of the above, while also ensuring that you have the tools to rank as highly as possible on search engine results pages! With our award-winning SEO strategies and unique tools, you can be sure that the Markethinkers team is who you want to help you succeed and achieve your goals!