Duplicate content occurs in various instances. The most common occurrence of duplicate content comes from copied content without permission, content curation where a blog post of relevant content is created, content syndication and content scraping.
For a search engine, this becomes an issue because it indexes more than one version of a web page, which reduces the search visibility of that content. Having your own original content makes for better rankings – and with the improving search engine algorithms, duplications are being discovered more often.
But search engines are not the only things affected by duplicate content. For site owners, this could mean diluted visibility of each of the duplicated content pages and therefore diluted link equity.
The other issues that arise from having duplicate content are that search engines won’t know where to direct the link metrics to, and they won’t know which version of the content to rank when it comes to query results.
Avoiding the duplicate content issue in the first place would be your best option, so in order to do that, you need to be careful that you are not inadvertently publishing duplicate content in a variety of ways. These could include using multiple URLs that point to the same content (such as http and https, or www and non-www pages), having the same content in different languages, and paginated content.
The most popular solution is the 301 redirect which allows you to change the URL of the website, which makes sure that your visitors are getting to the correct page by redirecting the duplicated pages to this new URL. Because these pages are now combined to a single destination, they stop competing with each other and create a stronger relevancy.
Another effective method would be to add a canonical tag to the preferred URL of your content so that when the search engine bot is directed to your page and sees the tag, it goes directly to the original source, and this works for any other duplicated content so that your SEO does not lose any value.This is basically like acknowledging to Google that you are aware the content is duplicate, and you are not trying to “cheat” the system for better rankings.
The simplest method to prevent duplicated content is to run a comprehensive website audit to scan the web for duplicate content. Using industry tools allow you to see how close any of your web copy is to another source, that was indexed before yours (and therefore would be deemed by Google as duplicate). Alternatively, if you have duplicate content and do not wish to create original copy, you can use meta tags, specifically no-index meta tags. These tell your search engine not to index the content, but also not to ignore any other links that go to and from that same page. This strategy, however, can impact SEO as Google has fewer pages of “original content” to index, so best to simply avoid duplicate content by creating your own.
Having a unique website that makes you stand out is key to avoiding any issues with duplicated content on your website. You also don’t want to risk being left out of search rankings due to identical pages. By using the options suggested, you can make sure that you eliminate any duplicated content and be a strong contender on the Search Engine Results Page. Speak to your SEO Agency Melbourne Media Consulting today for more information on how we can help you obtain and more importantly maintain outstanding rankings with our unique content strategy.