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Firm Management

How Syndicated Content Hinders Website Rankings

If you subscribe to a syndicated content resource for your blog, your firm is at an SEO disadvantage. Here’s why.

If you subscribe to a syndicated content resource for your blog, your firm is at an SEO disadvantage. Here’s why.

When duplicate content is found in a search query, search engines don’t know which URL to show. If they get it wrong, it negatively impacts their search quality, which could damage their brand. So, they don’t do it.

According to Portent, “Google does not impose a penalty for duplicate content. However, it does filter identical content, which has the same impact as a penalty: a loss of rankings for your web pages.”

Duplicate Content Types

Duplicate content comes in a few forms, including:

  1. The same content posted on several websites, e.g., blog content.
  2. Duplicate content on the same website, e.g., landing pages mirroring blog posts.
  3. Duplicate met title and description tags on more than one page.

How to identify duplicate content.

There are few remedies you can use to identify when your content is being duplicated, such as:

  1. Copyscape
  2. Plagspotter
  3. Duplichecker
  4. Sitelines
  5. Smallseotools

In addition, the Digital Marketing Institute shared this tip.

“Google recommends copying around ten words from the start of a sentence and then pasting it with quotes into Google. If you test this for a page on your website, you would expect to see only your webpage to show up and ideally with no other results. If other websites show as well as your site, Google hints that it thinks the original source is the result it shows first. If this isn’t your website, you may have a duplicate content issue. Repeat this process by testing a few random short sentences of text from your webpage into Google.”

Duplicate Content Remedies

If you’re buying content for your blog or website, here are some simple things you can do to fix duplicate content issues.

  1. Change the title; this is the most impactful tip.
  2. Ensure there are links to reputable sources within the content when posted in your blog/page.
  3. In the page or blog post meta title and description fields, add a keyword phase and unique description. See example below.
  4. If an image is incorporated, change the file name to a term that reflects the topic. Then upload the image to your site and include an alt tag with a keyword phrase. If it’s your own image (non-stock), apply the same practice and add an image description.

Example

  • Purchased Content Title: Inflation Reduction Act’s Individual & Small Business Tax Credits
  • Image provided by seller.
  • No links within the content.

Take these actions before the content is posted to your site.

  1. Change the title, making it very relevant to your audience, e.g., How the Inflation Reduction Act Impacts Realtor Tax Credits.
  2. Change the image file name to “inflation-reduction-act-realtors.png.” Since it’s a stock image, there’s no need to add a description. But add an alt tag, like Inflation Reduction Act for Realtors.
  3. Add links to reputable sites within the content.
  4. Adjust any copy to focus on your target market.
  5. If you have more than one article about this topic, at the bottom of your post, include an “Additional Resource” bulleted list of similar content. It helps to keep visitors on the site longer. 

In addition to the steps you can take, Moz offers advanced technical remedies your website developer can put into practice to help you avoid the duplicate content issues.

With busy season right around the corner, using a syndicated resource to provide content for your site might seem like a win. If published as provided, you may miss out on valuable search rankings. Avoid  duplicate content syndrome and pack your content with links, relevant images, and keywords for your specific audience.