Duplicate content is a term used in the field of search engine optimization to describe content that appears on more than one web page, within the same web site. When multiple pages within a web site contain essentially the same content, search engines such as Google can penalise/not display that site in any relevant search results.
In a perfect world there would be only one version of every document but in real life this is not true. A great example is online versions of newspaper sites. In one form or another they all publish exactly or close to the same information about events and facts.
This also applies to many other areas, say, recipes, fitness programs, diet programs, definitions, explanations and many others.
Search engines can penalize a sites ranking if it looks as though content has been taken from another site. However, these sites do sit in index and even rank very well. How can this be? Does it mean there are no filters?
Filters exist, but they are in a primitive form
Search Engine’s need lots of resources to check the entire internet. Therefore, engines use simple forms to uncover duplicate content.
The most common pattern is links. In general engines check between two linked sites for duplicate pages/content. If they exist, then engines try to get rid of the duplicate – usually the one who links to the source site.
How does this work?
If website B (healthy news) republished an article from site A (health research institute) and puts a link from B to A for reference, search engines understands that site A is the original source and the site B has copied it. Site B is seen as dupe content website.
How do search engines penalize?
One or two articles like this won’t harm your site much for example, if website B has lots of original content. However, if duplicate content fills a significant number of pages, websites can be penalized by being moved down in the search result pages, moved to supplemental index or even unlisted from search index.
What does it mean to you?
The idea is simple – don’t link to websites that have the same content as yours – especially if it is in huge amounts compared to total number of pages.
What you should do?
You may not link to websites with duplicate content but your website may have lots of popular articles like from More Niche Content Connection, it is useful to follow few rules of thumb which are based on the fact that engines evaluates the whole page’s code not just the article itself.
To put it simply – engines see all page as code, that probably includes site specific menu, HTML tags, layouts, title, descriptions etc. so it mix it up and articles aren’t considered as duplicate since it is part of some bigger code. That’s the secret.
Some useful tips for Content Connection users:
To ensure even more security from search engines it is recommended to use one or more of these tips:
1) use articles on pages that have a solid size menu
2) try to have a unique intro and closing for used articles, change titles
3) use synonyms to replace words
4) insert comments in the middle of an article or links to detailed info
5) insert contextual short product reviews (1 picture plus one paragraph and link to full review will be just fine)
6) split longer articles into 2 pages or more as long there stays 150 – 200 words on each page
7) rewrite articles into your own words
8) combine two or more articles into one
9) if there are bullet points – mix their order if possible
10) think outside the box…
Duplicate Content is a major problem for all types of websites and especially for Online Stores. Several case-studies showed that Search Engines tend to remove pages presenting a high percentage of Duplicate content. To avoid being excluded from Google’s & Bing’s organic listings, you will need to be extremely vigilant with the duplication of content within your web pages.