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Effect of Duplicate Content on SEO and Google Ranking

Duplicate Content

Imagine risking the content of your website! It doesn’t matter whether the duplicate content placed on your website was an accident or if someone stole blocks of content from your site. You are required to remedy the situation immediately. 

It also doesn’t matter whether you are managing the websites for a small business or a large corporation, all websites are vulnerable to the threat posed by duplicate content to your SEO friendly website campaign. 

Let’s find out how you can identify duplicate content and decide whether it affects your website performance internally or in other domains as well.

What is duplicate content?       

Duplicate content refers to pieces of content that are identical to each other or are extremely similar (these are called near-duplicates). The near-duplicate content implies that there are two blocks of content having just a little bit of difference. Keep in mind that having similar content is pretty natural and can be unavoidable in many circumstances, such as quoting the same article published on the net. 

There are two kinds of duplicate content. There is internal duplicate content when a single domain develops duplicate content by using several internal URLs of the same site. The second type is the external duplicate content that is also called cross-domain duplicates. It occurs if two or more domains have the same copy to be indexed by search engines.

How to Check for duplicate content?

If your website has pages that are full of content and yet its ranking position is declining, you need the help of SEO services to find out whether your content is getting copied and utilized by other sites. Some of the ways of doing it include doing an exact match search where you copy a few lines from the content and search for their duplicate on Google. You can also use an online tool called Copyscape for verifying duplicate content. 

What’s the relation between Duplicate content and SEO?

Officially, Google does not place any penalty on duplicate content. But the big search engine filters the identical content, which means it may deviate your traffic resulting in a penalty. It, therefore, means a loss of ranking for the website. The duplicate content is responsible for confusing Google, and it forces the search engine to select between the identical pages for ranking in the eyes of Google. 

It may not matter who produced the content originally, as there are chances that the original content may not get selected for ranking in the SERPs. This is one of the several reasons why duplicate content is one of the SEO mistakes to avoid.  To resolve this, you can consider working with an SEO consultant. That will eliminate the problem posed by duplicate content, plus the SEO services wouldn’t cost much. 

Which are the important On-page elements?

To avoid duplicate content problems, ensure that all pages of your website have a unique Meta description and page title within the HTML code for the page. You need to have headings such as h1, h2, h3 that vary from other pages of the site. 

Although the Meta description, title, and headings make for just a small amount of content on your web page, it is safer to maintain your website out of the grey area related to duplicate content as far as possible. It is an excellent method for getting the search engines to check the value of Meta descriptions included on the page.

Duplicate Content and Product descriptions

For obvious reasons, it is difficult for e-commerce companies to create unique product descriptions. It may take a long time to write the original descriptions for every product on a site. 

But if you are looking to rank for a Raspberry Pi 4 in the search engine, you are required to differentiate the product page for Raspberry Pi 4 from other pages describing the product. If you are selling your products via third-party retailer sites or have other resellers that offer your products to their customers, you need to provide a unique description of all these resources.

What is Scraped content?

When one of the website owners steals content from another for improving organic visibility, it is termed as scraped content. These webmasters attempt to get the machines to rewrite the scraped content they have stolen from other sites.

Sometimes it is easy to identify the scraped content as the stealers many times do not bother to replace branded terms placed in the content. If you are found trying to manipulate the search index in Google, you will find that the website is getting ranked significantly lower or may even get removed from the search results altogether.

Final Words

Avoiding unintentional duplications is important as well because this could lead to a penalty from Google, which would negatively impact all your posts at once.

1) Ensure originality by making sure every word is written instead of just cutting-and-pasting text or images without adding anything new 

2) Make good use out of keywords in order to maintain relevance 

3) Use synonyms when possible.

Google is constantly updating its algorithms to find spammy sites and penalize them. Having a healthy SEO strategy can help you steer clear of this!

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