Identifying and addressing duplicate content concerns is essential to keeping a well-optimised website. Duplicate content can harm both SEO and user experience. In this blog, we’ll look at how to find and fix duplicate content on your website, resulting in higher search engine rankings and a more pleasant user experience.
What Is Duplicate Content?
Duplicate content is highly similar and occurs in many locations, either on the same website or across multiple websites. Duplicate content can cause problems for search engines, as they may need help determining which version to rank in search results. It might have a detrimental impact on a website’s SEO and rating.
Causes Of Duplicate Content?
Duplicate content can originate from various sources and circumstances, potentially hurting a website’s SEO efforts and user experience. The following are some of the most common reasons for duplicate content:
- URL Variations: Different URLs might lead to the same content, such as sorting options, tracking codes, or HTTP vs. HTTPS page versions.
- Syndication and scraping: If other websites republish your work without proper attribution, this can result in duplicate content difficulties.
- Printer-Friendly Pages: Making printer-friendly versions of web pages may result in unintentional duplicates.
- Session IDs: Adding session IDs or other dynamic parts to URLs can duplicate content.
What Is The Impact Of Duplicate Content On SEO & Rankings?
Duplicate content can have a negative impact on a website’s SEO and ranks. When search engines encounter identical or substantially similar content on several pages, they have difficulty determining the most relevant result, potentially resulting in reduced rankings and exposure for affected pages. Furthermore, it might save the crawl budget and dilution of link equity, which can harm a site’s overall performance.
The following are the primary effects of duplicate content on SEO and rankings:
- Penalties: Search engines may penalise websites with a high amount of duplicate content, significantly declining rankings and organic traffic.
- Reduced Visibility: When search engines detect duplicate content, they may only display one version, reducing the visibility of other relevant pages on the site.
- Confused Ranking Signals: Duplicate content needs to be clarified for search engines, challenging prioritising the most authoritative page and potentially resulting in lower total domain authority.
- Diminishing User Experience: Users may find duplicated or irrelevant content, resulting in discontent and decreased engagement, affecting overall user experience and site credibility.
How To Find Duplicate Content?
1. Duplicate Content Checker
Use online duplicate content detection tools such as Copyscape, Siteliner, or Screaming Frog. These online tools are specifically developed to search for duplicate content on your website or specific URLs. They work by comparing the content of your pages to content from other websites on the internet.
To use these tools, enter the URL to be checked, and the tool will provide a report identifying any instances of duplicate content and where it was discovered.
2. Using Google Search Console
- Go to your Google Search Console account and sign in.
- Choose your website’s property.
- Go to “Coverage” on the left-hand menu, then “Excluded.”
- Keep an eye out for “Duplicate page without canonical tag” problems. It will generate a list of pages that Google believes have duplicate content concerns.
3. Check URLs of Duplicate Content
Manually analysing your website’s URLs entails visiting each page to look for similar or identical content. Pay attention to page names, meta descriptions, and the website’s main content when inspecting URLs. Take note of any URLs that appear to contain the same or highly similar content.
Scroll to the right in Screaming Frog to find the Last Modified column. It may be helpful to you:
- Determine how recent the content updates are and the magnitude of the site’s content updates.
- Create a timeline of page updates.
4. Keyword Prominence
Navigate to the H1 tab in Screaming Frog and look at the H1, H2, and H3 tags. To find H3 tags on your site, use the H2 tab or construct a custom filter.
Examine the H tags in Screaming Frog for keywords. Keep an eye out for:
- Keyword Word Order: Make sure the order of keywords in your headings is sensible and matches your content’s topic.
- Grammar and Spelling: Check your H tags for grammar or spelling mistakes. Correcting these flaws before publishing material is critical for maintaining a high-quality website.
- Reading Level: Evaluate your H tags’ reading level. Aim for an appropriate reading level based on your target audience to engage and inform your readers properly.
- Identifying and rectifying grammar and spelling problems during a site audit can be challenging, but it’s vital to maintaining a well-performing website.
5. Number Of Outbound Links
Examine the quantity of external (outbound) links on your web pages. If numerous pages have identical outbound links, it could indicate that those pages have duplicate content or boilerplate material. SEO crawlers can assist in determining the quantity of external links on each page.
How to check?
- After identifying the page on which you wish to verify outbound links, in Screaming Frog, click on the URL in the main window, then click on the Outlinks tab.
- Outlinks section: If you wish to detect site-wide outbound links quickly, you may also select Bulk Export > All Outlinks.
6. Number Of Internal Links
Internal links within your website go to other pages.
Excessive links to identical content on different sites may suggest content duplication.
Using SEO auditing tools, you can discover your site’s internal linking structure and detect problematic pages.
- Screaming Frog SEO Spider: This tool crawls your website and offers information about the internal linking structure. You can examine your site’s internal link count, anchor text, and distribution.
- Ahrefs: It has a Site Audit feature that allows you to analyse the internal linking on your website. It contains information about internal link difficulties as well as suggestions for improvement.
- SEMrush: SEMrush’s Site Audit tool examines your internal linking structure, exposing issues such as duplicate internal connections.
- Moz Pro: Moz’s Site Crawl tool may detect internal link issues, such as pages with excessive internal connections to similar or duplicate content.
7. Check Broken Links
Broken link checkers look for URLs that lead to non-existent or “404” pages on your website. Broken links can contribute to duplicate content indirectly by resulting in several versions of the same content. Use a broken link checker tool, such as Xenu’s Link Sleuth, or one of the many online tools.
8. 301 Redirects
Implementing 301 redirects is an effective way to resolve duplicate content issues. When you have numerous pages with identical or highly similar information, you can designate one as the canonical version (the one you wish to maintain) and lead the other duplicate pages to it. This is how it works:
- Select the canonical page: Choose which version of the information to preserve as the primary one. This version should be the most authoritative or relevant.
- Create 301 redirects: Configure 301 redirects from the duplicate pages to the canonical page using your website’s server or content management system. It informs search engines that the duplicate pages have permanently moved to the canonical URL. Internal links should be updated: Ensure that all internal linkages are functional.
How Does echoVME Digital Help In Fixing Duplicate Content?
At echoVME Digital, the best digital marketing agency, we realise the importance of unique and relevant content in maintaining a strong online presence. We execute complete audits with a team of seasoned SEO specialists to discover duplicate content concerns, deploying sophisticated methods such as content consolidation, canonical tag installation, and customised SEO solutions. Partner with us, and let us address duplicate content issues, resulting in increased search engine visibility and user experience, ultimately driving more organic traffic and conversions.
Duplicate content may wreak havoc on a website’s SEO, resulting in lower exposure, potential penalties, and user unhappiness. It is critical to use effective tactics and technologies to discover and correct duplicate content to maintain a strong online presence and improve search engine results.
1. What is duplicate content in SEO?
Duplicate content is defined as large blocks of content that exist on many web pages, either inside the same site or across multiple sites.
2. Does internal duplicate content have an impact on SEO?
Yes, internal duplicate material can cause search engines to become confused and have a detrimental influence on a site’s SEO performance and rankings.
3. How can I avoid duplicate content problems?
Set up canonical tags, use 301 redirects, and create unique, valuable material to eliminate duplicate content concerns and boost overall SEO.