What exactly is duplicate content? It refers to content that shows up at more than one URL or location online. There are two types of duplicate content: Internal and External.
Internal duplicate content occurs when there is more than one page on your website with the same content. External duplicate content happens when other websites copy and publish your content, with or without your permission.
Both types of duplicate content are a significant problem for websites. Generally, duplicate content presents three issues for Google:
- The first issue is that Google doesn’t know which version of the content to show in the search results, leading to a poor user experience.
- The second issue is that Google perceives duplicate content as a sign of low-quality websites, which can hurt your website’s ranking in the search results.
- The third issue is that Google may penalize your website for publishing duplicate content, which can damage your website’s reputation and SEO strategy.
These losses can be significant. That means less organic traffic, fewer leads, and lower sales for your business. So, how can you avoid duplicate content and improve your SEO (search engine optimization)?
Scan your website for duplicate content.
The first thing you should do is check your website for external duplicate content. You can use a tool like Copyscape to determine if any of your web pages have been copied by other websites. Just add the link to the page you want to check and hit “submit.”
If Copyscape finds any duplicate content, you’ll see a list of websites where the content has been found. You can then contact the website owners and ask them to remove the copied content.
If you don’t want to use a tool like Copyscape, you can also do a manual check for duplicate content. Just do a search on Google for part of your content, enclosed in quotation marks.
To check duplicate content on your homepage, you case use Siteliner.com
You can also use Google’s Search Console to find out if there are any pages on your website that have been penalized by Google because of duplicate content. Just go to “Security & manual actions” then click on “Manual Actions.”
If you see a message that says “Duplicate content,” click on it for more information. You’ll see a list of pages on your website that have been penalized because of duplicate content.
Or you can use a tool like Screaming Frog to find duplicate content on your website. Just add your website’s URL and hit “start.” The tool will then crawl your website and find any duplicate pages.
If you need professional help, hire an SEO marketing Agency or SEO consulting agency to check for duplicate content on your website. They can help you find and fix any duplicate content issues on your website.
Add a rel=canonical tag.
Canonical tags are a great way to tell search engines which version of a page you want them to index. For example, if you have both a www and a non-www version of your site, you can use the canonical tag to tell Google which version you prefer.
It can help reduce duplicate content issues and ensure that the correct version of your page is indexed. The rel=canonical tag is also the best way to transfer link juice from a duplicate page to another page.
So, when Google finds a duplicate content issue, it will attribute all of the link juice to the canonical page. Hence, your website rankings increase, and the content that matters most to you gets the most traffic.
Take note that the duplicate page will still be there when you do this. It won’t be removed, but it will stop being indexed.
If you’re not sure how to set up a canonical tag, there are plenty of online resources that can help. For example, Google has a great guide on how to set up rel=canonical tags.
Adding a canonical tag is a fairly simple process and only takes a few minutes. But it can make a big difference in how your website is indexed and ranked. So, what are you waiting for? Start canonicalizing your pages today!
Set up a 301 redirect.
If you want the duplicate page to go away and retain the primary URL’s ranking, you need to set up a 301 redirect. A 301 redirect is a way of telling the search engines that the old page has permanently moved to the new page.
So, the link juice from the old page will flow to the new page, and the old page will be dropped from the search engine’s index.
Use the noindex tag.
The noindex tag can be used on a page to tell search engines not to index the content of that page because it’s a duplicate. With this HTML tag, Google will still be able to crawl the duplicate page, but it won’t be indexed.
Hence, your duplicate content will not appear in Google search results. Only the original content will appear.
Minimize boilerplate repetition.
Boilerplate content refers to repetitive statements such as contact information or disclaimers that appear on many pages of a website. While it is important to have this content on your site, Google may think of them as duplicates. As a result, your site may be penalized for having too much duplicate content.
One way to avoid this is to minimize the amount of boilerplate content on your site. For example, instead of having a separate page for your contact information, you can include it in the footer of your website. This way, it will appear on every page, but it won’t be considered duplicate content.
Another way to avoid duplication is to use a robots.txt file to exclude certain pages from being indexed by search engines. It can be helpful if you have a lot of boilerplate content on your site that you don’t want to appear on search engine results pages.
Or you can try to rewrite your boilerplate content to be unique to each page. It may be time-consuming, but it will help improve your site’s SEO.
Ensure any syndicated content is on the right websites.
Syndicated content refers to content that is published on more than one website. For example, press releases or blog posts that are picked up by other websites. It’s a common practice for businesses, as it allows them to reach a wider audience.
When this happens, it’s essential to make sure that the original website is credited as the source of the content. If you syndicate your content and it’s not attributed back to your website, you’re effectively giving away free advertising and valuable link juice to another site. Not only that, but you’re also at risk of having your content getting duplicate content penalties from Google.
To avoid these problems, make sure you only syndicate your content to websites that you trust. If possible, try to get a link back to your website in the syndicated content. It’ll help improve your SEO ranking and give you some extra traffic.
Or you can add a short bio and a link to your website at the end of each syndicated post.
Once you’re removed all of the duplicate content, it’s time to update any internal links. It includes links to other pages on your website, as well as any references to the old URL.
Ensure that all other pages in your website and your site map no longer link to the web page you removed because of duplicate content. Or else, you risk having search engines index the old, duplicate content URL instead of your new one, losing all the valuable link juice and traffic you’ve generated.
A search engine optimization company or SEO company can help you out with this so you can focus on the more important aspects of your website or business.
Duplicate content is an issue that can plague any website, and it can have a significant impact on your SEO results, which can lead to a loss in traffic and revenue.Fortunately, there are steps you can take to identify and remove duplicate content from your site. If you want assistance, work with the Best SEO Services In Los Angeles to help you with that process. An SEO agency can help you with digital marketing and more. So, make sure you reach out to the best SEO companies out there.