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What You Don’t Know About Duplicate Content Can Kill You

How to deal with duplicate content right now

How to deal with duplicate content right now

All of us create and duplicate our own content unintentionally. Content can be fully or partially scraped by others. Duplicate content can cause your pages to not rank well on search engines, be removed from search results and even lead to legal complications.

Here’s my advice on how to identify and deal with duplicate content.

What is duplicate content?

Google Webmasters (now Google Search Console) defines duplicate content as “substantive blocks of content within or across domains that either completely match other content or are appreciably similar. Mostly, this is not deceptive in origin.”

Search engines do a great job of showing the best possible content in response to a search query and of identifying the original content source as well. Adhering to Webmasters guidelines will make it easier for search engines to understand what page holds the original content and help it rank accordingly. Having too much duplicate content on your site will lead to loss in rankings and organic traffic. Having other sites duplicate your content could have your content eliminated from search results, especially if the other sites have greater authority, higher number of links pointing to their sites and they have provided no link attribution indicating yours is the original content.

Needless to say, when dealing with Hispanic SEO, it is quite easy to generate duplicate content in two different languages or by geo-targeting. I have covered some of these issues in my International SEO article.

The first thing to understand are the different types of duplicate content: deliberate or malicious, and non-malicious.

Non-malicious duplicate content could happen on discussion forums that may generate a separate desktop and mobile page, in online stores’ product definition that may be repeated on several different and distinct pages, in comment pagination, in lack of definition for the preferred domain, and even when offering printer-only versions of your website pages. This type of duplicate content is not penalized by Google, although I highly recommend avoiding it as much as possible. What you don’t consider malicious, search engines may.

Malicious or deliberate duplicated content occurs when a website owner attempts to manipulate search results to rank better or increase traffic. This is penalized by Google with removal from search results.

Google Panda and duplicate content. Discover how to deal with duplicate content right now.

Google Panda and duplicate content

The most malicious duplicate content of them all: Content scraping

Let’s say you are researching a topic you want to write about and happen upon a wonderfully written piece of content. Who hasn’t? What to do? What to do? As long as you do not scrape the article and you do provide proper attribution, you may cite it. Providing proper attribution will allow you to avoid being accused of plagiarism. Plagiarism is passing someone else’s work off as your own. This is different from copyright infringement, that is using someone else’s protected work by Copyright law without permission which exposes you to being taken to civil or criminal court. Is it really worth it?

Even better yet, ask the content owner for permission. This is very easy to do. Usually there’s an email, a contact form, or a Twitter handle where you can simply write: “Hey! I love your content. Can I properly cite it? What type of attribution would be acceptable to you?” What do you think can come out of this? A resounding yes and the likelihood that they will share your content on their own network. Pretty nifty, huh?

How can I properly cite somebody else’s content and why?

You may think that writing the source alone provides clear attribution, but look at your article again. Does it read as if it’s yours and at the very end, there’s a footnote with the source? Then the attribution is not clear.

Another benefit of proper attribution is the respect earned from your own readers who will see you as an honest content developer. A third benefit is the appreciation of the person you have cited. Who knows? They may invite you to guest blog one day.

Are you afraid that your readers will exit your site to read the source instead? Then make your content even more engaging. Provide more value. When was the last time you were reading a great article who cited somebody else with a link and you clicked on it? Probably not recently. The number of people who will leave your site because of a citation/attribution is minimal and is important to remember that people will leave your site eventually, anyway.

My recommendation for proper attribution of content is to enclose the text in quotes, indicate within the paragraph who said it and add a link to the source. There is no need to link to the source every time you mention them but you should mention them each time you are citing something they said. Therefore, it is clear you are not misappropriating content and passing it off as yours.

How to provide proper attribution to content from others

How to provide proper attribution

If you decide to reword content but still share someone else’s original concept, add the name of the source to the paragraph and link it to the source page from there. Here’s an example:

Example of proper attribution. How to deal with duplicate content

Another example of attribution

Still worried that people might leave your site or that you will lose Google juice if you adhere to these practices? Let me assure you, you will get the exact opposite.

Penalization for duplicate content may not be too severe right now but wait a couple of years and try to save your site from another “Panda.” As far as people leaving your site, think about yourself, do you click on every link a page offers or do you keep on reading the article? If you are still afraid, improve your content, provide greater value to your reader and get rid of your fears.

If you decide to copy the whole article (and I strongly advise that you do not, especially if it’s one of my articles), I highly recommend citing the source at the very beginning and at the end. And, for your own protection as well as respect to the person that wrote the article, canonicalize the URL by pointing to the original URL. Then you can offer the content to your readers while letting search engines know which is the original article. Don’t know what “canonicalize” means? Don’t worry. Keep reading.

<head>
<link rel=”canonical” href=”http://domain.com/original-content-page/” />
</head>

If you have a WordPress site and have the Yoast SEO plugin installed, add the URL to the canonical field.

Has somebody scraped my articles?

There are several ways to find out if your content has been scraped. A Google search, is usually my very first check, but you can create a Google Alert out of that search to be alerted when somebody infringes your copyright or scrapes your site. Another great tool is Copyscape. Their free version will allow you to identify if your content has been duplicated on other sites.

Notice of infringing content removed by Google

Infringing content removed by Google

Here’s a result for one of my articles, copied in its entirety by the first site. Yes, I have requested they take it down. I sent them an email and copied their hosting company. Did they? No, and a month passed by. What are your rights then? Submit a request reporting them to Google thanks to the DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act). Does it work? Check it out on your own. 😉 A short time after  I reported them, the page does not show up on search anymore and there’s a very nice footnote from Google about it.

The notice also gets posted to the Chilling Effects database. Chilling Effects is a project of the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at the Harvard University and collects notices of copyright infringement from the web.

Have I given you a great reason not to infringe copyright and to quote, provide proper citations and use lots of “according to…” and loving links instead? Good. Nothing that is not yours should read as if it was yours.

Karma’s a Bitch

How does scraping somebody else’s content affect my life? Simple: infringing copyright is a crime and you may end up in civil court. Have you scraped content and would like to find out if Google has filtered you out? Add “&filter=0” at the end of the search query.

Content scraping SEO penalties

Content scraping SEO penalties

Non-malicious duplicate content and how to address it

We all have duplicate content… duplicated by ourselves!!! Some of these types of duplicate content are very common. One of the most common types are the printer-friendly pages. You know, those pages that pop up without any page formatting so people can print the page? If not properly addressed, these are exact copies of the original content. Always make sure that your printer-friendly page does NOT get indexed on search engines.

Do you understand URLs?

A rose by any other name is a rose. This is a great analogy to understand URLs or Unique Resource Locators. The URL is the true address of a page and it’s where search engines can find the content you have so painstakingly developed.

In real life, every home has an address that’s unique to that home. We can append modifiers to it, like “the last one on the block” or “the one with the blue door” but people know how to resolve these directions and end up on the same address. The problem is that search engines need a bit more direction than that. Let me show you some examples of URLs that we know are the same but search engines understand them as different:

http://domain.com and http://domain.com/index.php

http://domain.com/articlename and http://domain.com/articlename?sessionid=1234

http://domain.com/product and http://domain.com/product/?ref=name

http://domain.com and http://www.domain.com

http://domain.com and http://domain.com/

http://domain.com and https://domain.com

http://domain.com/categoryb/producta and http://domain.com/categoryb/producta

Session ID’s, URL parameters, page printer-friendly versions and even a backslash at the end of an address are interpreted as a different URL by search engines, if proper directions have not been given. To complicate matters more, think about those pages that can be displayed under a couple of categories, if the category is part of the URL. For example, an article that can be found under social media and SEO. There are many more situations where this type of content duplication occurs as this is not an exhaustive list.

Canonicali…. what???

Here’s comes the concept of canonicalization. A tongue twister on its own (try to conjugate the verb really fast!), it ends up being much forgotten by developers and SEOs alike. Not an easy concept unless you have some technical knowledge but I’ll try my best.

Canonicalizing a URL is the equivalent of adding signals for search engines that state, no matter what the address looks like, if this content is the one displayed, then this is the address of the original and indexable content because it’s the original version.

The good news for those on large platforms like WordPress, Shopify, Drupal, Joomla, there are plugins and apps that can help with it. Otherwise, you need to add the canonical tag to the head section of the page. This indicates to search engines which is the original version of the page.

<link rel=”canonical” href=”http://www.domain.com/original-product-content/dateposted” />

Canonicalization is key on learning how to deal with duplicate content. A word of caution: do not use canonicalization when a re-direct is needed and search engines may choose to ignore your canonical tag.

What are canonical url tags? Find out!

What are canonical url tags?

And the duplicate content saga continues

URLs are not the only way of unintentionally creating duplicate content. Repeating paragraphs all over your site to emphasize a concept is a great way to tell the search engine that you don’t know which page is the most relevant for it.

Another great way of generating duplicate content is adding your bio to all of your article footers, even though so many website owners feel proud to see their bio there. Do you think it’s a good idea to disseminate the bio that is on your site to everybody that requests your bio? Absolutely not. I make it a point to create a different bio for publishing on other sites. Some of them a bit more alike than others, but definitely different than the one I publish on my site. This is why it really upsets me when somebody scrapes my website bio to add to the sites where I collaborate. Yes, it’s a shortcut and you may think nothing of it. But if somebody is collaborating with you for free, shouldn’t you just ask for them to also provide you with the bio they want published?

Now, let’s tackle content syndication. We all want to see our content shared all over the web. Hey! Let’s plaster it everywhere, what do we care? NOT! When you syndicate your content you are creating copies of it, exact duplicates. Mmmm.. which one is the original one that should be indexed by search engines? I wonder. Back to canonicalization? But how can you control other people pointing at your URL? Do they even know how to do that? Maybe you can ask for their article to carry a no-index tag. And maybe you should only syndicate a particular, different version of your article. Add a slight spin to it and syndicate.

Duplicate titles, descriptions and snippets are another great way to generate duplicate content. Think about it for a minute. If I show you two articles with the same title and description, which one will you choose? They must be the same, correct? But search engines add other factors in order to determine that they are one and the same like the URLs, and thus consider the page to be its own duplicate.

If you have a Google Search Console account, you can identify most of these pieces of duplicate content under Search Appearance >> HTML improvements.

What Duplicate Content Boils Down To

Going back to the physical address analogy, there could be many ways for someone to indicate how to get to the same house, but search engines are not people and they will think each unique description is a different house altogether.

Generating confusion for search engines is not where you want to be. First, because search engines will display only one of your “many pages” as they are identical in content and the search engine has a hard time determining which one is the most relevant. Second, people may link to the different URLs and this reduces the authority of your page.

I suggest you begin by addressing a list of duplicate content with the implementation of canonical tags, using 301 re-directs when needed, linking back to the original content, utilizing Google’s URL parameters tool and Bing’s Ignore Parameters Tool, improving your URL structure and avoiding the creation of duplicate content whenever possible.

I hope this has been a helpful little guide on how to address duplicate content. It is no means exhaustive. There are many other amazing SEOs that have written about it in much more depth. But feel free to ask questions in the comments section below. I’ll do my best to address them as best I can.

Doing the impossible quote

Doing the impossible quote

Next Quote? funny inspirational quotes on every post!

Pinterest Search by Interests, a Google contender?

Pinterest is rolling out “Interests”, a new type of Pinterest search. How does it work and what does it mean to your brand? What search algorithm is used?

by Havi Goffan

Pinterest keeps taking steps to becoming the next Search Engine and a very strong Google contender. By rolling out “Interests”, a new type of Pinterest search that allows you to explore your own interests in a highly engaging and exploratory manner. Gone is the restriction imposed by the pre-determined Pinterest search by Categories. Now, the search is open to all content.

Pinterest search preview

Pinterest search preview

Pinterest is rolling out "Interests", a new type of Pinterest search

Pinterest is rolling out “Interests”, a new type of Pinterest search

 

How exactly does Pinterest Search by Interests work?

When a Pinner performs a search by Interests, the results are displayed with a new format, as seen below, but even more interestingly,  the Pinner’s boards and Pins, basically, his or her interests, become the search categories. Let’s call this level of engagement 1.

How exactly does Pinterest Search by Interests work?

How exactly does Pinterest Search by Interests work?

The second level of engagement takes place when the Pinner sees his or her own Pins as the covers of many of these search result boards. The search result boards carry the names of the Pinner’s own boards and pins and will become the keyword used on the Pinterest search by Interests.

Once the Pinner selects one of these boards or keyword – a selected group of Pins or Pinterest search results – is displayed delivering the third level of engagement, as the Pinner is already interested in the subject.

Pinterest Search by Interests results

Pinterest Search by Interests results

The Pin that Inspired the Search or Keyword

The Pin that Inspired the Search or Keyword

Pinterest Search: What search algorithm is used?

The algorithm for this Pinterest Search perform searches by both keywords and images and it seems to have sufficient intelligence to remember certain associations such as Darth Vader for Volkswagen, as depicted below. According to the information shared on the Pinterest blog for business, some metadata is used as well.

Pinterest Search: What search algorithm is used?

Pinterest Search: What search algorithm is used?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What does this new Pinterest Search mean to brands?

Last December, when I spoke at a Social Media Conference on Pinterest and stated that Pinterest was going to become the next search engine, I myself did not expect it to happen so fast. Ben Silbermann, you and your team have outdone yourselves again.

The Pinterest search by interests definitely helps brands get more exposure on Pinterest. I would highly recommend the use of Rich Pins, crisp images where the logo and the product are clearly identifiable, and last but not least, the use of keywords and hashtags. 

Now, brands can feature their products in a very attractive way to both men AND women (remember Topman UK has the largest follower base in Great Britain), add search engine optimization to their Pins as usual and now, more than ever, listen and SEE the conversation on Pinterest.

Interests will be rolled out to mobile and everyone around the world soon.

How to Market to Latinos on Pinterest. Step 2: Understanding User's Intent. A guide to successfully market to Latinos on Pinterest. Don't miss out!
30% of Pinners prefers to be on Pinterest rather than watch TV
What makes for an effective Pinterest strategy
Reverse Showrooming: how to leverage the power of Pinterest

Header image Credit: Vue Photography Online

love this quote

love this quote

Next Quote? funny inspirational quotes on every post!

What You Don’t Know About Duplicate Content Can Kill You

How to deal with duplicate content right now

How to deal with duplicate content right now

All of us create and duplicate our own content unintentionally. Content can be fully or partially scraped by others. Duplicate content can cause your pages to not rank well on search engines, be removed from search results and even lead to legal complications.

Here’s my advice on how to identify and deal with duplicate content.

What is duplicate content?

Google Webmasters (now Google Search Console) defines duplicate content as “substantive blocks of content within or across domains that either completely match other content or are appreciably similar. Mostly, this is not deceptive in origin.”

Search engines do a great job of showing the best possible content in response to a search query and of identifying the original content source as well. Adhering to Webmasters guidelines will make it easier for search engines to understand what page holds the original content and help it rank accordingly. Having too much duplicate content on your site will lead to loss in rankings and organic traffic. Having other sites duplicate your content could have your content eliminated from search results, especially if the other sites have greater authority, higher number of links pointing to their sites and they have provided no link attribution indicating yours is the original content.

Needless to say, when dealing with Hispanic SEO, it is quite easy to generate duplicate content in two different languages or by geo-targeting. I have covered some of these issues in my International SEO article.

The first thing to understand are the different types of duplicate content: deliberate or malicious, and non-malicious.

Non-malicious duplicate content could happen on discussion forums that may generate a separate desktop and mobile page, in online stores’ product definition that may be repeated on several different and distinct pages, in comment pagination, in lack of definition for the preferred domain, and even when offering printer-only versions of your website pages. This type of duplicate content is not penalized by Google, although I highly recommend avoiding it as much as possible. What you don’t consider malicious, search engines may.

Malicious or deliberate duplicated content occurs when a website owner attempts to manipulate search results to rank better or increase traffic. This is penalized by Google with removal from search results.

Google Panda and duplicate content. Discover how to deal with duplicate content right now.

Google Panda and duplicate content

The most malicious duplicate content of them all: Content scraping

Let’s say you are researching a topic you want to write about and happen upon a wonderfully written piece of content. Who hasn’t? What to do? What to do? As long as you do not scrape the article and you do provide proper attribution, you may cite it. Providing proper attribution will allow you to avoid being accused of plagiarism. Plagiarism is passing someone else’s work off as your own. This is different from copyright infringement, that is using someone else’s protected work by Copyright law without permission which exposes you to being taken to civil or criminal court. Is it really worth it?

Even better yet, ask the content owner for permission. This is very easy to do. Usually there’s an email, a contact form, or a Twitter handle where you can simply write: “Hey! I love your content. Can I properly cite it? What type of attribution would be acceptable to you?” What do you think can come out of this? A resounding yes and the likelihood that they will share your content on their own network. Pretty nifty, huh?

How can I properly cite somebody else’s content and why?

You may think that writing the source alone provides clear attribution, but look at your article again. Does it read as if it’s yours and at the very end, there’s a footnote with the source? Then the attribution is not clear.

Another benefit of proper attribution is the respect earned from your own readers who will see you as an honest content developer. A third benefit is the appreciation of the person you have cited. Who knows? They may invite you to guest blog one day.

Are you afraid that your readers will exit your site to read the source instead? Then make your content even more engaging. Provide more value. When was the last time you were reading a great article who cited somebody else with a link and you clicked on it? Probably not recently. The number of people who will leave your site because of a citation/attribution is minimal and is important to remember that people will leave your site eventually, anyway.

My recommendation for proper attribution of content is to enclose the text in quotes, indicate within the paragraph who said it and add a link to the source. There is no need to link to the source every time you mention them but you should mention them each time you are citing something they said. Therefore, it is clear you are not misappropriating content and passing it off as yours.

How to provide proper attribution to content from others

How to provide proper attribution

If you decide to reword content but still share someone else’s original concept, add the name of the source to the paragraph and link it to the source page from there. Here’s an example:

Example of proper attribution. How to deal with duplicate content

Another example of attribution

Still worried that people might leave your site or that you will lose Google juice if you adhere to these practices? Let me assure you, you will get the exact opposite.

Penalization for duplicate content may not be too severe right now but wait a couple of years and try to save your site from another “Panda.” As far as people leaving your site, think about yourself, do you click on every link a page offers or do you keep on reading the article? If you are still afraid, improve your content, provide greater value to your reader and get rid of your fears.

If you decide to copy the whole article (and I strongly advise that you do not, especially if it’s one of my articles), I highly recommend citing the source at the very beginning and at the end. And, for your own protection as well as respect to the person that wrote the article, canonicalize the URL by pointing to the original URL. Then you can offer the content to your readers while letting search engines know which is the original article. Don’t know what “canonicalize” means? Don’t worry. Keep reading.

<head>
<link rel=”canonical” href=”http://domain.com/original-content-page/” />
</head>

If you have a WordPress site and have the Yoast SEO plugin installed, add the URL to the canonical field.

Has somebody scraped my articles?

There are several ways to find out if your content has been scraped. A Google search, is usually my very first check, but you can create a Google Alert out of that search to be alerted when somebody infringes your copyright or scrapes your site. Another great tool is Copyscape. Their free version will allow you to identify if your content has been duplicated on other sites.

Notice of infringing content removed by Google

Infringing content removed by Google

Here’s a result for one of my articles, copied in its entirety by the first site. Yes, I have requested they take it down. I sent them an email and copied their hosting company. Did they? No, and a month passed by. What are your rights then? Submit a request reporting them to Google thanks to the DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act). Does it work? Check it out on your own. 😉 A short time after  I reported them, the page does not show up on search anymore and there’s a very nice footnote from Google about it.

The notice also gets posted to the Chilling Effects database. Chilling Effects is a project of the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at the Harvard University and collects notices of copyright infringement from the web.

Have I given you a great reason not to infringe copyright and to quote, provide proper citations and use lots of “according to…” and loving links instead? Good. Nothing that is not yours should read as if it was yours.

Karma’s a Bitch

How does scraping somebody else’s content affect my life? Simple: infringing copyright is a crime and you may end up in civil court. Have you scraped content and would like to find out if Google has filtered you out? Add “&filter=0” at the end of the search query.

Content scraping SEO penalties

Content scraping SEO penalties

Non-malicious duplicate content and how to address it

We all have duplicate content… duplicated by ourselves!!! Some of these types of duplicate content are very common. One of the most common types are the printer-friendly pages. You know, those pages that pop up without any page formatting so people can print the page? If not properly addressed, these are exact copies of the original content. Always make sure that your printer-friendly page does NOT get indexed on search engines.

Do you understand URLs?

A rose by any other name is a rose. This is a great analogy to understand URLs or Unique Resource Locators. The URL is the true address of a page and it’s where search engines can find the content you have so painstakingly developed.

In real life, every home has an address that’s unique to that home. We can append modifiers to it, like “the last one on the block” or “the one with the blue door” but people know how to resolve these directions and end up on the same address. The problem is that search engines need a bit more direction than that. Let me show you some examples of URLs that we know are the same but search engines understand them as different:

http://domain.com and http://domain.com/index.php

http://domain.com/articlename and http://domain.com/articlename?sessionid=1234

http://domain.com/product and http://domain.com/product/?ref=name

http://domain.com and http://www.domain.com

http://domain.com and http://domain.com/

http://domain.com and https://domain.com

http://domain.com/categoryb/producta and http://domain.com/categoryb/producta

Session ID’s, URL parameters, page printer-friendly versions and even a backslash at the end of an address are interpreted as a different URL by search engines, if proper directions have not been given. To complicate matters more, think about those pages that can be displayed under a couple of categories, if the category is part of the URL. For example, an article that can be found under social media and SEO. There are many more situations where this type of content duplication occurs as this is not an exhaustive list.

Canonicali…. what???

Here’s comes the concept of canonicalization. A tongue twister on its own (try to conjugate the verb really fast!), it ends up being much forgotten by developers and SEOs alike. Not an easy concept unless you have some technical knowledge but I’ll try my best.

Canonicalizing a URL is the equivalent of adding signals for search engines that state, no matter what the address looks like, if this content is the one displayed, then this is the address of the original and indexable content because it’s the original version.

The good news for those on large platforms like WordPress, Shopify, Drupal, Joomla, there are plugins and apps that can help with it. Otherwise, you need to add the canonical tag to the head section of the page. This indicates to search engines which is the original version of the page.

<link rel=”canonical” href=”http://www.domain.com/original-product-content/dateposted” />

Canonicalization is key on learning how to deal with duplicate content. A word of caution: do not use canonicalization when a re-direct is needed and search engines may choose to ignore your canonical tag.

What are canonical url tags? Find out!

What are canonical url tags?

And the duplicate content saga continues

URLs are not the only way of unintentionally creating duplicate content. Repeating paragraphs all over your site to emphasize a concept is a great way to tell the search engine that you don’t know which page is the most relevant for it.

Another great way of generating duplicate content is adding your bio to all of your article footers, even though so many website owners feel proud to see their bio there. Do you think it’s a good idea to disseminate the bio that is on your site to everybody that requests your bio? Absolutely not. I make it a point to create a different bio for publishing on other sites. Some of them a bit more alike than others, but definitely different than the one I publish on my site. This is why it really upsets me when somebody scrapes my website bio to add to the sites where I collaborate. Yes, it’s a shortcut and you may think nothing of it. But if somebody is collaborating with you for free, shouldn’t you just ask for them to also provide you with the bio they want published?

Now, let’s tackle content syndication. We all want to see our content shared all over the web. Hey! Let’s plaster it everywhere, what do we care? NOT! When you syndicate your content you are creating copies of it, exact duplicates. Mmmm.. which one is the original one that should be indexed by search engines? I wonder. Back to canonicalization? But how can you control other people pointing at your URL? Do they even know how to do that? Maybe you can ask for their article to carry a no-index tag. And maybe you should only syndicate a particular, different version of your article. Add a slight spin to it and syndicate.

Duplicate titles, descriptions and snippets are another great way to generate duplicate content. Think about it for a minute. If I show you two articles with the same title and description, which one will you choose? They must be the same, correct? But search engines add other factors in order to determine that they are one and the same like the URLs, and thus consider the page to be its own duplicate.

If you have a Google Search Console account, you can identify most of these pieces of duplicate content under Search Appearance >> HTML improvements.

What Duplicate Content Boils Down To

Going back to the physical address analogy, there could be many ways for someone to indicate how to get to the same house, but search engines are not people and they will think each unique description is a different house altogether.

Generating confusion for search engines is not where you want to be. First, because search engines will display only one of your “many pages” as they are identical in content and the search engine has a hard time determining which one is the most relevant. Second, people may link to the different URLs and this reduces the authority of your page.

I suggest you begin by addressing a list of duplicate content with the implementation of canonical tags, using 301 re-directs when needed, linking back to the original content, utilizing Google’s URL parameters tool and Bing’s Ignore Parameters Tool, improving your URL structure and avoiding the creation of duplicate content whenever possible.

I hope this has been a helpful little guide on how to address duplicate content. It is no means exhaustive. There are many other amazing SEOs that have written about it in much more depth. But feel free to ask questions in the comments section below. I’ll do my best to address them as best I can.

Doing the impossible quote

Doing the impossible quote

Next Quote? funny inspirational quotes on every post!

Pinterest Search by Interests, a Google contender?

Pinterest is rolling out “Interests”, a new type of Pinterest search. How does it work and what does it mean to your brand? What search algorithm is used?

by Havi Goffan

Pinterest keeps taking steps to becoming the next Search Engine and a very strong Google contender. By rolling out “Interests”, a new type of Pinterest search that allows you to explore your own interests in a highly engaging and exploratory manner. Gone is the restriction imposed by the pre-determined Pinterest search by Categories. Now, the search is open to all content.

Pinterest search preview

Pinterest search preview

Pinterest is rolling out "Interests", a new type of Pinterest search

Pinterest is rolling out “Interests”, a new type of Pinterest search

 

How exactly does Pinterest Search by Interests work?

When a Pinner performs a search by Interests, the results are displayed with a new format, as seen below, but even more interestingly,  the Pinner’s boards and Pins, basically, his or her interests, become the search categories. Let’s call this level of engagement 1.

How exactly does Pinterest Search by Interests work?

How exactly does Pinterest Search by Interests work?

The second level of engagement takes place when the Pinner sees his or her own Pins as the covers of many of these search result boards. The search result boards carry the names of the Pinner’s own boards and pins and will become the keyword used on the Pinterest search by Interests.

Once the Pinner selects one of these boards or keyword – a selected group of Pins or Pinterest search results – is displayed delivering the third level of engagement, as the Pinner is already interested in the subject.

Pinterest Search by Interests results

Pinterest Search by Interests results

The Pin that Inspired the Search or Keyword

The Pin that Inspired the Search or Keyword

Pinterest Search: What search algorithm is used?

The algorithm for this Pinterest Search perform searches by both keywords and images and it seems to have sufficient intelligence to remember certain associations such as Darth Vader for Volkswagen, as depicted below. According to the information shared on the Pinterest blog for business, some metadata is used as well.

Pinterest Search: What search algorithm is used?

Pinterest Search: What search algorithm is used?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What does this new Pinterest Search mean to brands?

Last December, when I spoke at a Social Media Conference on Pinterest and stated that Pinterest was going to become the next search engine, I myself did not expect it to happen so fast. Ben Silbermann, you and your team have outdone yourselves again.

The Pinterest search by interests definitely helps brands get more exposure on Pinterest. I would highly recommend the use of Rich Pins, crisp images where the logo and the product are clearly identifiable, and last but not least, the use of keywords and hashtags. 

Now, brands can feature their products in a very attractive way to both men AND women (remember Topman UK has the largest follower base in Great Britain), add search engine optimization to their Pins as usual and now, more than ever, listen and SEE the conversation on Pinterest.

Interests will be rolled out to mobile and everyone around the world soon.

How to Market to Latinos on Pinterest. Step 2: Understanding User's Intent. A guide to successfully market to Latinos on Pinterest. Don't miss out!
30% of Pinners prefers to be on Pinterest rather than watch TV
What makes for an effective Pinterest strategy
Reverse Showrooming: how to leverage the power of Pinterest

Header image Credit: Vue Photography Online

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Hulu Generates Most Ad Views

Hulu generated more US ad views than any other online video property in June 2010, according to comScore VideoMetrix data.

Hulu Narrowly Beats Tremor

Americans viewed more than 4.3 billion video ads in June 2010, with Hulu generating the highest number of ad views at 566 million.

Americans viewed more than 4.3 billion video ads in June 2010, with Hulu generating the highest number of ad views at 566 million.

Americans viewed more than 4.3 billion video ads in June 2010, with Hulu generating the highest number of ad views at 566 million. Tremor Media Video Network ranked second overall (and highest among video ad networks) with 524 million ad views, followed by BrightRoll Video Network (333 million) and Microsoft Sites (222 million).

Video ads reached 46.1% of the total US population an average of 31.5 times during the month. Hulu delivered the highest frequency of video ads to its viewers with an average of 24.2 during the course of the month, and reached 7.8% of the total US population.

Meanwhile, Tremor only averaged a monthly frequency of 8.2 ads per viewer per month, but reached a much higher percentage of the US population (21.4%, the highest among the top 10 online video properties by ad view).

YouTube Propels Google Success

More than 177 million US internet users watched video content in June, totaling 5.1 billion sessions and an average of 870 minutes per month per user.

Google Sites, driven primarily by video viewing at YouTube.com, ranked as the top video content property with 144.5 million unique viewers, followed by Yahoo! Sites (44.9 million viewers) and Vevo (43.7 million viewers).

Google Sites had the highest number of overall viewing sessions with 1.8 billion and average time spent per viewer at 261 minutes, or 4.3 hours. Hulu also had high viewer engagement with an average of 135 minutes (or 2.2 hours) per viewer.

Other Findings

  • The top video ad networks in terms of their potential reach were: ScanScout Network with 43.7% reach of the total US population, BrightRoll Video Network with 40.6%, and Break Media Network with 36.8%.
  • 84.6% of the total US internet audience viewed online video.
  • The duration of the average online content video was 4.9 minutes, while the average online video ad was 0.4 minutes.
  • Video ads accounted for 12.2% of all videos viewed but only 1.2% of all minutes spent viewing video online.

Google Monthly Viewership Sharply Drops

Using different metrics, The Nielsen Company determined that after increasing 50.7% in May 2010, monthly viewership for Google dropped 30.9% in June 2010. Google slipped from fourth to fifth place in the monthly ranking of online video brands by unique viewer, with about 13.02 million unique viewers.

Conversely, ESPN Digital Network saw its monthly viewership grow 50.5%, putting it in ninth place with about 8.5 million unique viewers. YouTube retained its clear dominance with 101.1 million unique viewers, a slight 0.2% decline from the previous month. The number two brand Yahoo, trailed with about 26.7 million unique viewers, representing 10.3% month-over-month growth.

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Job Applicant, Beware: You’re Being Googled

In a posting at the Brazen Careerist Web site, Jason Warner, Google’s head of staffing for online sales and operations, contends that this trend “will become a non-issue as this phase of the Internet Age plays itself out.”

In a posting at the Brazen Careerist Web site, Jason Warner, Google’s head of staffing for online sales and operations, contends that this trend “will become a non-issue as this phase of the Internet Age plays itself out.”

It’s not just what you say that can be held against you when you’re looking for a job. It’s also what you post on MySpace, write in your blog and broadcast on YouTube.

That’s because if a potential employer uncovers salacious or otherwise unflattering material about you online, that job offer you were expecting could vaporize. With 77 percent of employers Googling and otherwise researching applicants, you never know what your future bosses may think about those times you ranted about your coworkers or got sloshed at a party. They may simply decide to avoid your questionable past and move on to the next candidate.

“Who wants to be the person in HR who brings in the kid who has bong hits all over his page?” says Michael Fertik, the CEO of ReputationDefender, a services company that helps job seekers clean up their online reputations.

A 2006 survey of 100 executive recruiters by job search and recruiting network ExecuNet found that 77 percent use search engines to learn about candidates. Of those researching candidates online, 35 percent eliminated a candidate from consideration based on information they uncovered online — up from 26 percent in 2005. ExecuNet predicts that the number of job seekers prejudged or eliminated due to this “digital dirt” will climb.

Is Ignorance Bliss?

Others say the trend may not be as widespread or as likely to accelerate. “I never run them through Google,” says recruiter Michael Kelemen of his candidates. “I call their references for background.”

“I think a lot of the stuff we read about recruiters doing background checks on their candidates online is more rumor than anything else,” adds Kelemen, who runs the Recruiting Animal blog.

Recruiters use Internet searches “to avoid major red flags, but it is just another assessment of a person,” says the anonymous blogger known as Your HR Guy. He adds, “My general view on Internet searches is that, for most positions, ignorance is bliss. Most of what is online for a majority of workers is personal, and most workers’ personal stuff [doesn’t play a role at work].”

But If Everyone Has an Online Past…

Others say the pervasiveness of social networking sites, such as Facebook and MySpace, and the way young people virtually live online mean employers won’t be able to judge candidates based on their digital dirt. If they do, the thinking goes, they will miss out on top-notch employees, given that just about everyone will have some incriminating information online.

In a posting at the Brazen Careerist Web site, Jason Warner, Google’s head of staffing for online sales and operations, contends that this trend “will become a non-issue as this phase of the Internet Age plays itself out.” He suggests five reasons employers won’t spend time worrying about “unfortunate online photos” and “other embarrassing antics”:

  • College students have always behaved in this manner.
  • More details about everyone will be online.
  • Searching for photos won’t be worth recruiters’ time.
  • The information is irrelevant.
  • It’s a slippery slope, especially if employers start to research existing employees’ outside behaviors.

Warner acknowledged the risks of having “those photos” online, and in a subsequent online discussion about his views at Brazen Careerist, others noted how interviewers and hiring managers may find it impossible to disregard what they learn online about candidates, even if the material falls into the category of forgivable indiscretions.

Clean Up Your Act or Stay True?

Certainly the possibility that a prospective employer can uncover things about your past can create anxiety about whether you should clean up your online image by revising Facebook pages, requesting that videos and blog posts about you be removed, or by hiring ReputationDefender or a similar service.

In a Brazen Careerist article titled “Twentysomething: Raunchy Old Photos Will Be Part of the Revolution,” Ryan Healy, cofounder of Employee Evolution, a Web site for Millennials entering the workforce, said he knows people who have removed materials “to save some face in the real world,” but has never considered doing so himself. “Why should I pretend to be one person for eight hours a day and someone else entirely the rest?” he writes.

And consider this: The generation moving into the workforce may not want to work for an employer that wouldn’t hire a talented 20-something for having a drunken photo on Facebook, suggests Scott Allen, coauthor of The Virtual Handshake: Opening Doors and Closing Deals Online. “The standards are going to radically change,” he says.

Source: Allan Hoffman, Monster Tech Jobs Expert

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Mobile To Outpace Desktop Web By 2013

Looking ahead to 2014, Gartner estimates that 3 billion of the world's adult population will be able to conduct transactions via mobile or Internet technology.

Looking ahead to 2014, Gartner estimates that 3 billion of the world’s adult population will be able to conduct transactions via mobile or Internet technology.

Mobile phones will overtake PCs as the most common Web access devices worldwide by 2013, according to a new forecast by research firm Gartner. That’s an even more aggressive outlook than Morgan Stanley’s projection that the mobile Web will outstrip the desktop Web in five years.

Gartner estimates the combined installed base of smartphones and browser-equipped enhanced phones will surpass 1.82 billion units by 2013, eclipsing the total of 1.78 billion PCs by then.

But the firm warns that many sites still are not optimized for the mobile Web, even though cell users expect to make fewer clicks on their phones than on a PC. To successfully expand into mobile, publishers will have to reformat sites from the small form-factor of handheld devices.

Looking ahead to 2014, Gartner estimates that 3 billion of the world’s adult population will be able to conduct transactions via mobile or Internet technology. “Cash transactions will remain dominant in emerging markets by 2014, but the foundation for electronic transactions will be well underway for much of the adult world,” according to the firm.

In a more qualitative prediction, Gartner says that by 2015, context will be as key to mobile consumer services and relations as search engines are to the Web. Where search provides the key method for organizing information and services on the Internet, context will be critical to delivering personalized user experiences on smartphones.

“Context will center on observing patterns, particularly location, presence and social interactions. Furthermore, whereas search was based on a ‘pull’ of information from the Web, context-enriched services will, in many cases, prepopulate or push information to users,” stated the report. New offerings like Google’s “Near me now” feature — providing information on nearby business and services based on a mobile user’s location — come to mind in that vein.

Gartner added that any Web company that doesn’t become a mobile context provider risks handing over customer ownership to a competitor that is providing location-aware or other services that create context for users. As Gartner expects Facebook to be the hub of the social Web by 2012 (it’s not already?), it should also play a key role in social networking to mobile phones.

Three important issues are raised in the article by MediaPost on the Gartner research.

 

Mobile To Outpace Desktop Web By 2013

Mobile To Outpace Desktop Web By 2013

1. Most companies have not optimized their websites for the Mobile Web. To have a good presence on the Mobile Web, an adjusted website for the device must be set in place.

2. Context will be key for mobile just as search engines are for the Web. The context will be able to service the user personalized relevant content (in time).

3. Search engines were based upon pulling information to users at their request, mobile on the other hand will be able to prepopulate or push information on unique aspects as the context, the person and content wanted at that point of time.

Companies need to start thinking about any implications the Mobile Web might have for their business and target groups. Fast consecutive occuring life-cycles will make it much more difficult to intervene when the mobile has come to its peak of importance. A technology like Augmented Reality, which is going to grow the coming years, will even grow further by this, where it could be possible that Proximity Marketing will have a second more contextually relevant chance. Last but not least, this could impact media convergence as well, where TV, PC and Mobile will blend into new cross-media experiences which shall depend much on Mobile as well.

What is your take on this?

Source: Gartner Research