Duplicate content can be damaging to your website for a number of reasons. Not only is it frowned upon by Google, but it can also lead to a loss in traffic and revenue. But what is duplicated content and how do you avoid the problem for your website?
What is Duplicated Content?
Duplicated content is defined as blocks of content that are either identical or very similar; this can be across multiple pages on your website or across multiple websites. Importantly, Google does not like duplicate content and will often penalize websites that have it. This means that your website could be pushed down the rankings, resulting in a loss of traffic and revenue.
For example, let’s say you have a page on your website that contains duplicated content. It could be that you have identical content for two location service pages – you’ve just changed the name of the location. In this scenario, Google will likely penalize your website, which could result in the page being pushed down the rankings.
Check Your Website for Duplicate Content
Do you have duplicated content on your website? There are a few ways to check; one way is to use a tool like Copyscape. Just enter your website’s URL into the search bar and Copyscape will scan your site for duplicate content.
If you do have duplicate content on your website, don’t panic; it’s better to know and work on the issue than allow the problem to continually impact performance. The first step is to identify where the duplicated content is coming from, and an SEO agency in the USA thrives with this sort of problem.
There are a few common scenarios that can lead to duplicate content:
- You have multiple pages on your website with very similar or identical content
- You have the same content on multiple websites (perhaps you syndicate your blog posts)
- You have pages with very similar content but slightly different URLs
- Someone has copied content from your website and published it on their own site
Once you’ve identified where the duplicated content is coming from, you can take steps to fix the problem. If you have multiple pages with identical or very similar content, you can either delete the extra pages or combine them into one page. If you have the same content on multiple websites, you can either ask the other sites to remove the duplicated content or add a canonical tag to your own site.
What if somebody has copied your content on their website? Well, you can contact the site owner and ask them to remove the duplicated content. If this doesn’t work, you can also file a DMCA complaint. DMCA is short for the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, which is a U.S. law that protects against copyright infringement.
One of the best ways to ensure that you don’t have duplicate content on your website is to use a content management system (CMS). A CMS can help you keep track of your website’s content and make it easier to add new content. Duplicate content can also be caused by mistakes, such as when you accidentally publish the same article twice.
If you do have duplicate content on your website, change one so that they are unique or combine them. Not only will Google punish duplicate content directly, but you also get punished indirectly because your pages will compete against one another. Since the content is identical, they contain the same keywords. Not only are you competing against other brands, but you’re also competing against yourself.