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Information on Duplicate Content Issues with CMS & Blogs

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Please note: Since first writing this article back in Jan 2007, Google has made its stance on duplicate content abundantly clear. Click here to see what Google says about it.

If you have not yet read page one of this article ‘Duplicate Web Site Content - One way to harm your site’s rankings’, please click here to view it.

I've already outlined the generally recommended percentages a page needs so as not to fall foul of the dreaded duplicate content filter, and of the folly of reproducing other people's copyrighted materials from industry publications.

Let’s take a look at two other areas where misconceptions often occur.

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Duplicate Content with Content Management Systems and Blogs

  • My site is managed by a CMS and there is a certain amount of repetition from page to page. Is this a cause for concern?
    Under normal circumstances, the amount of duplication caused by a CMS (Content Management System) is minimal (normally about 10% to 15%). Here, the only cause for concern should be whether each individual page offers ‘value’ to its visitors in the shape of plenty of unique, informative content.

    Once again, as long as you ensure that 75% of your content is original, you should have nothing to worry about, aside from the fact that many Content Management Systems are not what you might call ideal for web promotion purposes. The only other time there might be an issue is when product descriptions enter the equation.

    The problem with these is that most webmasters will simply use the manufacturer’s original description, which of course has been used on countless other web sites before, and will be flagged as duplicate content. To minimize this problem, it really does pay to write your own product descriptions wherever possible.
  • Surely the way most blog sites store and serve data must cause duplicate web site content issues?
    Although on the face of it, blogs might be perceived as prime targets for the old duplicate content filter because of the myriad ways in which they allow visitors to search for posts (tags, archives, top posts, etc.) and the different URLs under which content is displayed depending on the searcher’s approach, there seems to be little in the way of duplication penalties.

    Then again, since the vast majority of blogs have a fairly similar way of doing things, you would expect search engines to have made allowances for this. This is one area where trouble may well be looming on the horizon, as blog spamming will result in more and more abuses of this particular medium.

Can it hurt me?

The simple fact is that duplicate content can and will harm a site’s rankings, and regaining lost search engine rankings is usually a slow and painful process.

Once again, click here to find out how Google sees it these days (Nov 2009).

So; whilst spammers are still looking for ever more imaginative ways of beating the latest search engine algorithms, duplicate content filters and assorted other means of trying to keep search engine results as relevant as possible, it is still far more beneficial all round to keep your site design and web promotion firmly aimed at you human audience.


Click here to return to Page 1 of this Article: Duplicate Web Site Content

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