“Duplicate content”! These words just shake the website owners from the inside out. The penalty that other website owners have faced due to the duplicate content (they think so) on their website completely justifies the fear.
But, hey, duplicate content isn’t as bad as understood. Yes, it can affect your rankings and traffic, but duplicate content only is the reason for it is by no means true, at least until now.
What is duplicate content?
Let’s get the basics right. What does duplicate content mean? Duplicate content implies the same content at more than one location or URL. In simple words, if the same content is present at multiple URLs or say locations, it is termed duplicate content.
So, what counts as duplicate content? Well, anything from the entire article to a few paras, anything can be considered duplicate content. If your content matches the other sources or is majorly similar, it is likely that the duplicate content penalty will come into the picture.
Let’s understand it with an example. For instance, if you have an eCommerce website named, “www.website.com/eCommerce”. Now, there comes a festival sale, and you redirect it to “www.website.com/sale/eCommerce.” Well, you are selling the same products, with the same content and images, but at two different URLs, which implies that Google will scan your websites in terms of duplicate content.
Why should you avoid duplicate content?
So, what are the primary reasons that you are required to avoid duplicate content? Checkout the answers by Pat’s Marketing, a top-rated Toronto SEO agency below.
1) Google has made it clear that any form of duplicate content will be penalized. If your website incorporates it, then you need to stay prepared for the fall in website rankings.
2) Duplicate content will directly impact your website traffic, hence degrading sales. Of course, the conversions are bound to degrade when your website isn’t generating the traffic that it should.
3) The consequences of a large duplicate content can be very serious that might even mean permanent closure of your website. You obviously don’t want to start all over again.
What are the various myths about duplicate content?
Now, when you are aware of the meaning of duplicate content, and the reasons that you need to avoid it, let’s understand the various myths revolving around it.
1) Duplicate content degrades your website rankings drastically: Yes, duplicate content does degrade your website rankings, but not as drastically as it is assumed. Google considers various factors like crawling, indexing, etc. when it comes to website rankings
Or maybe, there are flaws with your marketing? Well, there are numerous probable reasons for your website not being liked by Google, and duplicate content is just one of them. Hence, if your website rankings are not so good, and if you find duplicate content on your site, change it, and also look for other reasons.
2) Every piece of duplicate content is meant to be penalized: This is another common myth revolving around duplicate content. Yes, Google does penalize duplicate content, but only if the manipulation is the real intention behind this piece of content.
If you are adding duplicate content on your website to manipulate search engines and crawlers, you are likely to become a victim of the troubles. Mighty Google is wise enough to rectify the manipulation attempts, and hence waste no time in penalizing these websites.
However, if your intentions aren’t to manipulate Google, but to deliver value to the users and if you don’t use any illegal SEO tactics, Google won’t be punishing you. In fact, it would love people to visit your website. Hence, if you have been thinking that every piece of duplicate content is meant to be penalized, it’s time to think another way around.
3) Google can identify original content creators: This is another common myth that numerous Digital Marketers believe in. With the reputation that Google comes alongside it, it’s completely understandable why they do believe it.
However, the reality widely stands on the other side. Google or any other search engine by no means can identify original content creators at all.
Yes, if someone steals your content, and posts on their website, Google will penalise it, but under the violation codes of plagiarism. Here, by no means does it recognize the original content creator.
Please note that Google hates plagiarism, and rightly so. After all, no one deserves that opportunity to steal someone’s content and post it on their website. Hence, if you have been using plagiarism as your tool to improve your website rankings, you stare at the trouble.
However, please stop believing that Google can identify original content creators at all.
Top facts about duplicate content
Now, when you know the top myths about duplicate content, let’s go through some of the facts that you must know about the same.
1) 301 redirects are always helpful: If you are looking to minimize duplicate content, 301 redirects are always helpful. Redirecting an old URL to a new one always helps when it comes to minimizing duplicate content.
Hence, if your website incorporates duplicate content, use 301 redirects effectively on your website and get rid of the same.
2) URL variations are dangerous: Yes, minor URL variations are usually fine, but they might be a reason for duplicate content on your website. For instance, “www.website.com/shop” and “www.website.com/shop/black” might have the same content, hence bringing your website into the scanner.
Hence, avoid URL variations at all as it will reduce the chances of issues due to duplicate content considerably.
3) Understanding CMS will help: Understanding the content management system (CMS) is another reliable way of ensuring that the duplicate content stays away from your website.
Knowing every insight about the CMS will help you to recognize the duplicate content and hence get rid of the same efficiently.
Hence, understand the CMS of your website efficiently as it will immensely help you out in terms of keeping the duplicate content away from your website.
We hope that you are now clear with some of the top myths and facts revolving around with regards to the duplicate content.
If you desire to get more information, or if you desire to get any sort of assistance with duplicate content on your website, you can count on Pat’s Marketing, a top-rated SEO company in Toronto to do the job perfectly right for you. Our experts ensure that your website isn’t troubled by duplicate content at all, hence not allowing it to be your reason for degradation in rankings. To connect with our high-rated experts, reach out to us at 437-826-9333 (toll-free).