Duplicate Content and SEO

2022-03-18 by EPR Staff

Many companies already understand the ramifications of duplicate content on their websites, with search engines punishing pages that have duplicate content, even if it’s just a duplicate title or  phrase. It might seem like duplicate content is a terrible SEO mistake, but that’s not quite the case. What duplicate content really is, is any content that appears at more than one URL or location online. That means if the same information appears at multiple URLs, it’s considered to be duplicate content. However, according to Google’s own definition of duplicate content, it’s any substantive block of content across or within a domain that completely matches other content in the same language. That can include anything from an entire page that appears at different places on a website, to a product description that’s duplicated.

Avoiding Duplicate Content

According to Google, duplicate content doesn’t decrease a website’s SEO ranking. However, companies should always try to limit their duplicate content when possible. This is because when processing duplicate content, search engines don’t know which page they should be showing first in search results. Search engines try to determine the most relevant results for a particular search query, but there’s always a chance that they get it wrong. When that happens, the target audience doesn’t see or doesn’t engage with the right content, because the page that search engines show users when they look up certain information doesn’t actually answer their question. Companies can improve their user experience by limiting the duplicate content on their websites.

Duplicate Content Myths

Many companies believe that having duplicate content on their website will hurt their search ranking. While that might happen in rare cases, duplicate content doesn’t have as big an impact as many people think it does. When ranking, crawling, and indexing websites, Google considers a number of factors. That means companies should be building their reputation by creating valuable and unique content on their websites, to make search engines more likely to crawl a page and rank it higher compared to duplicate pages. Search engines also don’t have a habit of penalizing duplicate content, except in cases of deceptive behavior. Search engines consider duplicating content simply for manipulating search engines to be deceptive behavior, and in that case, they lower the search ranking of a website.

Sharing Guest Posts

Many companies think that reposting their own guest posts from other outlets to their own website will lead to a decrease in search engine results pages rankings. While guest posts are a great way for companies to get more traffic or boost their authority, it’s still important to inform the target audience about the guest posts so they can be aware. It’s important for companies to be careful not to link out too much from their guest posts because that’s actually what is harmful to SEO practices. The best way to go about resharing guest posts is to add an HTML tag to the republished post, so search engines can distinguish the original article from its copy.