Does Duplicate Content Still Play a Role?

Our customers know what to look for when it comes to search engine optimization. Of course, they also know the problems that arise when their websites contain pages with largely identical content. We often get the question if there is a risk of duplicate content when distributing content (typically blog posts) for promotional purposes on content distribution platforms.

Current Types of Content Distribution

Content from a company website is often published on partner websites as part of content partnerships or on platforms such as Medium. Types of content typically range from guest contributions in community blogs to specialist publications in science blogs and the like.

Another way this is done is the exclusive use of content distribution platforms. Providers such as Medium, LinkedIn, Reddit, Stack Exchange or Quora offer company pages with blog-like containers for companies, services or communities. There are lots of factors to consider when choosing a content distribution platforms, such as the type of content as well as your target group and their needs. There is an unlimited number of variations, each with their own advantages. When using these platforms you do not need the often cost intensive and tedious maintenance of a company website or blog.

So does duplicate content still play a role when distributing content on countless platforms and in social media?

Two different and highly credible sources have already made it clear that search engines have long since understood how to deal with the various forms of duplicate content.

In his blog post on Social Media Today, Randy Milanovic comes to the conclusion after various tests that the promotional success of his content seeding makes up for the potentially tiny SEO ranking loss.

In his blog post “3 Myths About Duplicate Content”, Neil Patel dispels any doubts: He addresses the integration of non-original content, content scraping and re-publishing of guest posts on his own website and gives tips for how to handle these situations professionally.

Duplicate Content Within Your Own Website

In contrast to the promotional distribution of more or less identical content on content distribution platforms, duplicate content within a website is not a good idea. This usually leads to inconsistent indexing by search engines. Duplicate content may then be indexed multiple times, whereas relevant pages are missing. In addition, the ranking of the pages is falsified. In the worst case, the search engine provider may punish the website, i.e. the website is removed from the search engines and no longer displayed on the result pages. This is not ideal for the search engine, or for business: depending on the situation, a company may lose credibility and customers’ trust.

So the conclusion is that there is an established content distribution market with many participants. With the providers of content distribution platforms as well as content producers being highly active. As a result, duplicate content, which is published in full length or in excerpts on one’s own site and additionally on various content distribution platforms, is not an issue.

Duplicate content under one’s own domain remains a no-go and will be punished sooner or later. For a web page it is still vital to offer unique, high quality content.

Let us know about your content distribution strategies or feel free to contact me if you have questions on this topic.

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