Duplicate Content SEO

Aaron Haynes
Nov 2, 2021

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Duplicate content is an SEO issue that arises from the same content appearing on multiple websites. It’s a problem for website owners and SEO professionals as there is no clear definition of what constitutes duplicate content. What is known, however, is that duplicate content hurts rankings.

Here, we’ll discuss duplicate content issues, explain why being aware of duplicate content is essential for your digital marketing and search engine optimization efforts, and answer the most frequently asked questions regarding duplicate content.

What is duplicate content SEO?

Some websites have identical or very similar content. When the same content appears on two different URLs, the problem of duplicate content SEO arises. Duplicate content SEO might be created accidentally, but it can also be created on purpose by website owners.

Source: SeerInteractive

Creating identical content from a different web site’s original content is pure plagiarism.

Just like in music, publishing, and other creative industries, taking someone else’s intellectual property and using it for yourself is considered both immoral and illegal. As such, Google and other search engine crawlers are well aware of the difference between content duplication and unique content. If a search engine discovers a web page has duplicate content, they impose a duplicate content penalty on that page, and also possibly the entire domain.

A clear definition of duplicate content isn’t available; some sources say that there must be 100% or even 95% similarity for two pieces of content to be considered as duplicate content. What can be said is that if two pages are similar, they can affect search rankings negatively.

Why is Duplicate Content SEO Important?

Duplicate content can affect website rankings in several ways. Understanding how search engines perceive and deal with duplicate content can help webmasters, and web admins avoid copied content and create an original, beneficial piece of content.

1) If the pages are very similar and rank on the same keyword, there’s a risk they will both be ranked very low. A page with duplicate content that ranks first is obviously better than another page with exactly the same content but ranks second. Sites with low rankings have fewer visitors and hence less conversion (which is an important KPI).

2) If the pages are different but ranking on very similar terms, it’s likely that only one will be returned in the SERPs. This can be bad if a page with important information that should be displayed is hidden behind a page with less useful information.

3) Pages containing duplicate content are usually penalized by Google, hurting their rankings even further. This is another reason why having more than one ranking for similar content is not good for SEO campaigns.

Duplicate Content SEO FAQ

How do I fix duplicate content in SEO?

1) Duplicate content that is always the same on two or more pages can be merged into one. It’s a lot of work, but it’s worth rewriting with SEO in mind it if there are many pages with duplicate content.

2) You can use canonical tags to tell search engines which page to return in SERPs. This way, you ensure that important information gets displayed and there aren’t any unnecessary rankings of similar pages.

3) You can use schema, which is a type of metadata that specifies the layout of your content. Google uses schema to generate the HTML code for search engine results pages (SERPs). If you add schema, it will ensure that your content is rendered correctly in SERPs.

Source: Fool

What can be said is that it’s almost impossible to define a clear markup and schema standard, but Google’s schema format is an easy way to create a similar standard for your site. Marketers can also help search engine crawlers index their pages by following SEO best practices and adding meta descriptions, sound URL parameters, and pagination practices to ensure search engines notice them as the original source of content.

A problem area for duplicate content is often eCommerce websites selling similar products. This is because the landing page might be different, but the product pages and product descriptions might be very similar to competing websites. This can make it difficult for content marketing on these specific pages, which is why using category pages in an eCommerce store is essential for good SEO.

Does duplicate content affect SEO?

1) Duplicate content may harm the credibility of websites and different pages if there are misleading or unsubstantiated links pointing to them. Furthermore, if duplicate content is found in the same keywords as the real sites, it can negatively affect rankings and be considered spam by Google.

2) There’s also an issue with respect to site trust. Website owners can lose trust by having duplicate content, or content that’s too similar to other pages. A page with duplicate content that ranks well may look too “fake” because it says the same thing as numerous other pages on the site.

How do I stop SEO duplicate content?

To stop duplicate content on your own website, you need to do more than just clean up your own site. It’s important to go further and develop better content, with a clear vision for the site itself. It’s also important to follow the guidelines given by Google to avoid penalties and improve your site’s rankings in the search engines algorithms.

The best way to get rid of duplicate pages is to transform it into unique information and make sure visitors also know what they’re looking for when visiting your pages. This is why it’s important to develop a content strategy that includes “headlines” and “titles” to make sure visitors know what they’ll find when they visit your site.

If you’ve found duplicate content on separate pages in the search engines, here are some tips:

Make sure you have SEO professionals that can help you find duplicate content and come up with an effective plan for cleaning it up.

When looking for duplicates, make sure you consider both links and text.

Is content syndication the same as duplicate content?

Content syndication is the repetition of the same content on different websites. Duplicate content is created deliberately, often by webmasters who wish to increase their search rankings.

Content syndication does not affect SEO in the same way as duplicate content, but it can be a problem for your site’s reputation. In other words, if visitors know that you’ve copied content from other sites and rewritten it for your own site (even if it’s for SEO purposes), they might not trust your site or its information as much.

Don’t forget: check out the other definitions (over 200) in our growing SEO glossary.


Hopefully, this article has given you a better understanding of duplicate content SEO.

The best way to avoid duplicate content is to create new articles and blogs with updated information regularly. The best way to avoid others duplicating your content is to follow SEO best practices which signal to search engines that your website is the original source of content.

To learn more about how we at Loganix can help you avoid duplicate content and structure your pages for maximum performance, please take a glance at our SEO services.

Hand off the toughest tasks in SEO, PPC, and content without compromising quality

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Written by Aaron Haynes on November 2, 2021

CEO and partner at Loganix, I believe in taking what you do best and sharing it with the world in the most transparent and powerful way possible. If I am not running the business, I am neck deep in client SEO.