Why Utilize a Duplicate Content Checker
Duplicate content is often debated among search engine optimization (SEO) professionals. While some will say duplicate content across your site and other domains will directly hurt your search engine rankings, many experts claim this to be untrue. In short, duplicate content is fine, as long as it does not come across as spammy content.
But what constitutes spammy content and how do you know if search engines will perceive your content as such? While there may be no straight answer to this, we can explain some best practices for monitoring duplicate content and ensuring your site won’t be penalized by search engines. A duplicate content checker can be of great use here, too. Let’s take a closer look at duplicate content, how to avoid it, and what tools you can use to ensure your site will stay penalty free.
What’s the Problem with Duplicate Content?
Duplicate content refers to large sections of content, within a single domain or across multiple domains, that match another page.
There’s some controversy surrounding duplicate content and its effects on search engine rankings. According to Google, duplicate content is only seen as malicious or manipulative of search engines if the content comes off as spammy. So for the most part, as long as you’re not trying to manipulate search engines, you won’t have to worry about penalties. What you do have to worry about, however, is whether the search engine will be able to pick the most relevant page from two pages with duplicate content.
While you may not have to worry so much about penalties, duplicate content can still hurt your rankings, as search engines won’t know which page to provide in search results. Considering this, it’s good practice to avoid similar content across your site. While you could simply click through each page of your site to check your own content, a duplicate content checker will save time and provide better results.
Choosing a Duplicate Content Checker
As far as duplicate content tools go, any one of them will get the job done. However, some of these tools offer a few more features than others and could ultimately expedite the process. So which duplicate content checker should you rely on?
Though it’s mainly designed to detect plagiarized text within documents, Duplichecker is great for comparing pages of your own site. Simply provide a URL for each page and click “Compare Content” and Duplichecker highlights the duplicated content in a side-by-side comparison.
A great and simple duplicate content checker, Copyscape simply provides a list of domains with matching content. Don’t worry too much when you see similar content on another domain, though, as this is the type of non-malicious content we discussed earlier. Either way, Copyscape is a perfect tool for quick monitoring and easy-to-read results.
Possibly one of the more in-depth duplicate content tools, Siteliner provides you with specific areas of your site that contain similar content and it even tells you the percentage of such content for any given page. However, Siteliner only lets you use the tool for free once every 30 days, which should suffice. Of course, you can upgrade to the premium service to perform additional scans.
Do You Need to Remove Duplicate Content?
Like we said before, you won’t need to worry much about your duplicate content and the potential penalties for such. That is, unless you’re trying to manipulate search engines to improve your rankings or you plan on plagiarizing someone else's content—which is never worth trying. Having said that, it may still be beneficial to optimize your duplicate content, as search engines will have an easier time crawling your pages and choosing a relevant one for any given search query. Optimizing your content can also help you find new areas for keywords, which could help improve some of your rankings or get your site ranking for additional keywords.
If upon utilizing a duplicate content checker you realize your site does indeed contain duplicate content, there are plenty of actions you can take to remove the duplicated content or redirect the search engines to the correct page. Like we said before, rework one of the pages to avoid duplicate content. This way, you’ll have two strong pages on your site, without having to worry about the search engine’s ability to crawl and specify which page is which. For simple duplicates like printer-friendly pages, simply remove them from your site.
Track Your Progress with StatCounter
When improving your website’s presence through SEO strategies, it’s essential to monitor your progress to see if your efforts are paying off or taking you in the wrong direction. Utilizing StatCounter to monitor data and make the necessary changes in your approach to SEO is key.
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