The Issues behind Duplicate Content

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Duplicate content can be defined at the publication of large blocks of nearly identical or matching content to multiple domains or other website pages. If you publish a piece of writing to one site or domain, and then upload the exact same content to another website, you will have created duplicate content.
From an SEO perspective, this process could be a cause for concern due to the way that search engines such as Google are known to perceive and deal with issues such as duplicate content. It’s fair to say that, if your business website is having problems with duplicate content, this can have a negative impact upon the SEO performance of your domain as a whole.

There are two main ways in which issues with duplicate content can begin to develop. The first is through internet users simply cloning content by copying walls of text from one page to another rather than working to put effort into creating unique text for their website pages. The second, and most common, cause of content duplication can relate to technical issues; below, we aim to discuss some of the most commonly occurring technical issues known to be associated with the duplication of text, as well as some ways such issues can be identified.

Content Management Systems creating Duplication

It is crucial to ensure that the content management system being used to management your website’s content is relatively easy to understand and operate, as these systems can sometimes be known to cause content duplication. For example, a content management system, or CMS, is able to display the same piece of content within many different formats. An example of this could be found within the blog posts being displayed upon a website’s blog homepage, buried in the archives of a page, in the blog’s category, and even under the author’s own archive.

Canonicalisation

 

Canonical issues are likely one of the most common causes of duplicate content creation. What may appear, at first glance, to be a set of URLs directing toward the same content have potential to look different from the perspective of the search engine. For example,

 

www.website.com

website.com

www.website.com/index.php

website.com/home.asp

 

the above URLs will be viewed within the search engines as four separate web pages. This means that, unless redirects or the use of canonical tags are implemented, they will most likely be treated as duplications of one another and therefore be considered to contain duplicate content. This example is not just true of a website’s homepage, as in the example, but can also occur on any other page that is able to be accessed via multiple different URLs. For example,

 

website.com/page

www.website.com/page

https://www.website.com/page

https://website.com/page

 

the above URLs could also be identified as duplicate content within search engines such as Google, making it important to identify and resolve issues such as these. The implementation of 301 redirects is a common solution to this issue and one commonly suggested by Google itself, along with ensuring the setup of a preferred domain in your search console and relaying this within all of your internal linking.

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