By: Glenn Judah
One of easiest ways to drag down your search ranking is to fill your website with duplicate content. Google defines duplicate content as “substantive blocks of content within or across domains that either completely match other content or are appreciably similar.”
Why is duplicate content so toxic to your search engine ranking?
When Google’s search crawlers run into identical content on multiple webpages, the search engine cannot decipher which version should be ranked for related searches. According to Moz, this confusion may lead Google to pick the wrong page of content to rank for search results.
Google can also penalize your website by lowering your website’s rankings or stop indexing your website altogether if it believes duplicate content is being used to manipulate rankings and deceive users.
One of the simplest mistakes made on websites is repeating the same paragraphs from the “About Us” section on multiple pages. You can fix this boilerplate content by cutting it down to a few lines of text and linking back to the longer version on the “About Us” page.
If you have multiple pages with similar content, it might be time to combine the content onto a single page. Your other option is to rewrite the content so each page stands out on its own.
Remember that the content of your website is the most important factor when it comes to search engine ranking. If a page of content doesn’t answer a customer’s question or provide relevant information, you should change it or remove it altogether.
Google wants to reward websites with unique information and offer users the best search experience. If you create original content with the user in mind and follow SEO best practices, you will be rewarded with improved search rankings and more website traffic.