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What Is Duplicate Content

By Expert Author: Ronald Bell

What Duplicate Content Is Not
It is not surprising that most people are vague about what is really meant by duplicate content because, common sense tells us that identical content appearing in different websites would be considered as duplicate content. But the actual fact is otherwise. Suppose you are engaged in building a list of people interested in a subject. Then you put up a squeeze page for enticing the target audience to give their email addresses in exchange for a free gift or an e-book. Then all you have to do is to drive traffic to your squeeze page using different traffic generating methods. One way is to use social bookmarking or article marketing method. For this you can do keyword research and write an article on your website about a related subject. Now if you submit the same article to different article directories and websites including social networks, all these will appear in the search engine results. Though these are identical, they are not considered as duplicate content by the search engines. You can check this out by opening any site containing commonly appearing advertisements of any popular consumer items such as mobile phones and copy paste these onto Google search bar and press enter. The search results will throw up many sites on which these identical advertisements appear. Now you can see the point that if the search engines were to consider these as duplicate contents, since they are exact same copies of the original advertisement created by the particular brand, then they would not be shown in the search results.
Now if this fact seems to be odd, consider what will happen if the search engines are programmed to consider these identical content appearing in different websites as duplicate content as our common sense dictates.
No company or brand will ever be able to splash their adverts in different websites, but one.
No news headlines or breaking news will be allowed to appear in more than one website.
Do you see the obvious consequence of what will happen if it is so?
The big companies and brands will not able to utilize the wide variety of webpages to reach out to millions through the internet.
This will obviously make the companies and big brands shy away from utilizing the internet for advertising their product, since they will not be able to reach out to millions of consumers through the net in the most effective way.
That is why the search engines are programmed to see the identical contents appearing in different websites, as not being duplicate content.
It is another matter that the article directories or some websites to which you may consider submitting your article may require you to submit unique article which is not submitted elsewhere. Of course you may circumvent this by making some alterations in your article before submitting to other websites so that these appear to be unique in nature.
Thus if you understand the real meaning of duplicate content, then you will be able to leverage the power of social bookmarking and article marketing to promote an affiliate product or to drive traffic to a website.
What Duplicate Content Is
If your website has identical content in two or more pages of the same website, then it is considered as duplicate content and the search engines will penalize the offending website by ignoring it in the search results. The search engines will consider this as attempts by the website owner to make his site appear to be rich in content.
Hence, we can see that, identical content appearing in different websites or different domain names is not considered duplicate content by search engines, but identical or near identical content appearing in two or more pages of the same website is considered as duplicate content. That is why the search engines contain the algorithm to distinguish between the two.
Thus we can see the importance of understanding the meaning of duplicate content especially for generating traffic to your website or squeeze page featuring an affiliate product or a free gift.

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