Duplicate Content and How to Fix It

Duplicate content refers to substantive blocks of content within or across domains that either completely matches other content or are appreciably similar.

Technically a duplicate content, may or may not be penalized, but can still sometimes impact search engine rankings. When there are multiple pieces of, so-called “appreciably similar” content (according to Google) in more than one location on the Internet, search engines will have difficulty to decide which version is more relevant to a given search query. A good SEO company in Philadelphia will always advise against duplicating content.

How to fix them

Whenever content on a website can be found at multiple URLs, it should be canonicalized for search engines.

There Are Three Main Ways To Do This

Using a 301 redirect to the correct URL, the rel=canonical attribute, or using the parameter handling tool in Google Search Console.

  1. 301 redirect: In many cases, the best way to combat duplicate content is to set up a 301 redirect from the “duplicate” page to the original content page.When multiple pages with the potential to rank well are combined into a single page, they not only stop competing with one another; they also create a stronger relevancy and popularity signal overall. This will positively impact the “correct” page’s ability to rank well.
  1. Rel=”canonical”: Another way to fix o duplicate content is to make use the rel=canonical attribute. This tells search engines that a given page should be treated as though it were a copy of a specified URL, and all of the links, content metrics, and “ranking power” that search engines apply to this page should be credited to the specified URL.
  2. Google Search Console allows you to set the preferred domain of your website (e.g. yourwebsite.com instead of <a target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow” href=”http://www.yoursite.com”>http://www.yoursite.com</a> ) and specify whether Googlebot should crawl various URL parameters differently (parameter handling).

The main drawback to using parameter handling as your primary method for dealing with duplicate content is that the changes you make only work for Google. Any rules put in place using Google Search Console won’t affect how Bing or any other search engine’s crawlers interpret your website; you will need to use the webmaster tools for other search engines in addition to adjusting the settings in Search Console.

Having an expert SEO Agency in Philadelphia can help you resolve these issues.

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