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One of the worst practices that can lead to SEO disaster is; to duplicate and copy content.
What is duplicate content? How to avoid it? How can it affect SEO? And how can you fix this issue?
All you need to know about duplicate content; is in this article.
What is duplicate content?
Duplicate content is content you find in more than one place, or in another word; content that is copied or duplicated from another website.
Anyone should know that SEO in Egypt When you copy content from another website, word-for-word; then you are in a big problem.
To be honest; the problem occurs when you copy more than a piece of content, but here is some advice: don’t leave anything to luck, and in the following, you are going to know “why”.
How does duplicate content affect SEO?
According to Google, they try to index pages with distinct information and valuable content.
Google is just like all of us; they want to display the best results.
Here is what happens when you copy content:
1- The copied one may rank:
Google won’t be able to know which version to rank high, to display to the audience.
Even if you own the original content; you should know that; the copied version may be better than yours, in this case, Google will display better content.
For that reason; if you doubt that a website has copied your content; you can report it to Google.
Google rarely will display both versions; so don’t leave anything to luck.
2- Dropping down in ranking:
The same will happen if you have more than one version, of the same content on your own website.
Google won’t be able to know which one is the original, so the original and the copied will suffer to rank.
Dropping down in ranking means; traffic loss, fewer conversions, money, and efforts will be wasted.
3- Google penalty:
In fact; it is rare to happen, but Google stated that duplicate content may lead to a Google penalty, which means; the entire website will be removed from search results.
But as we have mentioned before; it is rare, and happens only when a website relies on copying from other websites.
Because of copied content; Google sometimes refuses to index the page. It can affect you so badly especially if you have an e-commerce website.
How does duplicate content happen?
Usually; you don’t intend to duplicate content, but you still do. Not only you; according to studies about 29% of web content is duplicated; I am going to tell you “how”.
1- e-Commerce website:
E-Commerce websites have this very common problem; “the description of a product”.
They use the same description for the same product. At the same time; Google recognizes the description as duplicate content.
2- Using two or more versions of URLs:
You may create two or more separate versions of your website. One of them is “site.com” and the other is “www.site.com”, or HTTP:// and HTTPS://.
In other words; your www version does not redirect to the non-www version. Google recognizes both as duplicate content.
Actually; all the versions of your website; should redirect to the same place.
How to fix duplicate content issues?
Here are some tips to fix duplicate content issues:
1- Check the indexed pages:
Search for the number of pages on your website that Google has indexed, by searching for site:yoursitename.com in Google.
You can also use Google Search Console to help you. If the number that appears is the same / near the number of pages you have created; you are all set.
If the number that appears is far away; it means the other pages have been created automatically, and are duplicated.
2- Use the 301 methods:
To fix the URL issues, you should try the 301 redirects; it will redirect pages back to the original one, so; Googlebot will index the original page.
3- Stop Copying:
Use original pieces of content, blog posts, and editorial content. Do not copy from another website; try to have unique content; it will help you to rank faster.
4- Do not use the same Keywords:
Make every single keyword in your website unique. I am sure that is so hard, but you still have to do it.
Google doesn’t want to see similar content on the same website.
Note the following Keywords:
“Learn English Cairo”, “Learn English Aswan”
To Google; the previous keywords are the same.
5- Use tools:
Use tools like Siteliner to help you identify where the duplicate content is. Remove or redirect the duplicated content.