By Jill Whalen
As part of my SEO for 2013 and beyond series, I promised to provide more in-depth information about the “SEO killers” I mentioned last time.
Today I’m delving into duplicate content as it relates to SEO. My SEO audits of sites that lost traffic over the past year and a half showed that duplicate content was present on most of the sites. While it’s an issue that generally goes hand in hand with other SEO problems, duplicate content comes in so many forms that I found it to be the single most prevalent problem that can affect a website’s success with Google. Before 2011, duplicate content used to be filtered out of the search results and that was that. However, post-Panda/ Penguin, dupe content on websites can often have major repercussions.
How to Check for Duplicate Content
While there are numerous duplicate content checkers available, the simplest method is to copy a random snippet of content from various pages of a website, then wrap them in quotation marks and do a Google search. If a lot of dupes show up in the search results, you may have a Google duplicate content issue.
Another good duplicate content checker is to go to your Google Webmaster Tools account. Under “Optimization” you’ll see “HTML Improvements.” If you click “Duplicate Title Tags” you may learn about some duplicate content you had no idea existed on your website.