duplicate content question

30 replies
I put a book on Amazon and the main book description is almost identical to my landing page for the book. Will google see it as duplicate content?
#content #duplicate #question
  • Profile picture of the author webmarke
    No. Google does not penalize you for having duplicate content unless you are spamming. People keep saying they do...but it's not true.
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    • Profile picture of the author kindsvater
      Originally Posted by webmarke View Post

      No. Google does not penalize you for having duplicate content unless you are spamming.
      This "no penalty" canard has repeatedly been debunked here for years. It is one of the most dangerous claims that is incredibly harmful to new marketers.

      The fact is if your website consists of duplicate content, such as an Amazon affiliate site which is copying product listings from Amazon, good luck finding your site in Google.

      If you are an Ebay affiliate and your site consists of duplicate Ebay listings, you're looking at not just a ranking penalty, but deindexing.

      Google has repeatedly said pages without original content will not be shown or highly ranked. Thousands of broke marketers can attest to this.

      Even if you do not have an affiliate site and are not deindexed, Google not showing duplicate content may not technically be a "penalty". But you're still not appearing on the top of search rankings.

      So who cares what you call it?

      Duplicate content is the kiss of death.

      Worse, Google may assign the PageRank from your duplicate page to a more valued page. Again, whether you want to consider that a "penalty" or not is pure semantics.

      Duplicate content is, in most situations, only going to show if that is all Google has to show, or if there is a search for a quoted phrase in the content. For a decade Google has made an attempt to vary what is shown on its first page because a page of listings which identical information is not a good user experience.

      That doesn't mean someone cannot come up with a search example which is an exception to the rule.

      But you can take this to the bank: eliminating duplicate content is one of the most important things you can do for your website's rankings.

      Here is a lengthy analysis from Moz which similarly points out those claiming there is no duplicate content "penalty" are making, at best, an irrelevant semantic argument - who cares what you call it if Google is not highly ranking your site.

      https://moz.com/blog/duplicate-conte...st-panda-world

      .
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      • Profile picture of the author webmarke
        Originally Posted by kindsvater View Post

        This "no penalty" canard has repeatedly been debunked here for years. It is one of the most dangerous claims that is incredibly harmful to new marketers.

        The fact is if your website consists of duplicate content, such as an Amazon affiliate site which is copying product listings from Amazon, good luck finding your site in Google.

        If you are an Ebay affiliate and your site consists of duplicate Ebay listings, you're looking at not just a ranking penalty, but deindexing.

        Google has repeatedly said pages without original content will not be shown or highly ranked. Thousands of broke marketers can attest to this.

        Even if you do not have an affiliate site and are not deindexed, Google not showing duplicate content may not technically be a "penalty". But you're still not appearing on the top of search rankings.

        So who cares what you call it?

        Duplicate content is the kiss of death.

        Worse, Google may assign the PageRank from your duplicate page to a more valued page. Again, whether you want to consider that a "penalty" or not is pure semantics.

        Duplicate content is, in most situations, only going to show if that is all Google has to show, or if there is a search for a quoted phrase in the content. For a decade Google has made an attempt to vary what is shown on its first page because a page of listings which identical information is not a good user experience.

        That doesn't mean someone cannot come up with a search example which is an exception to the rule.

        But you can take this to the bank: eliminating duplicate content is one of the most important things you can do for your website's rankings.

        Here is a lengthy analysis from Moz which similarly points out those claiming there is no duplicate content "penalty" are making, at best, an irrelevant semantic argument - who cares what you call it if Google is not highly ranking your site.

        https://moz.com/blog/duplicate-conte...st-panda-world

        .
        The fact that his amazon listing will outrank his website is not because of duplicate content. It's because Amazon has more Authority than his site.

        That has nothing to do with duplicate content.

        Furthermore...He said he that he had the almost identical description on his landing page as his listing for a (1) book on Amazon. That's far different than having a page of copied content that is designed to sell products.

        As I mentioned in my answer...You will not be penalized unless you are spamming.

        He is obviously not spamming by putting the description of a (1) book on his landing page.

        That being said..

        You are linking to an article from moz.com. Last time I checked...They don't determine what Google Does.

        I got my info...Straight from the horses mouth. (Matt Cutts) -> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matt_Cutts

        Below is a video that Matt made about duplicate content.


        PS....There is no such thing as page rank anymore...Google Got rid of it! I challenge you to tell me the pagerank of any webpage on the web.
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        • Profile picture of the author Kurt
          Originally Posted by webmarke View Post

          PS....There is no such thing as page rank anymore...Google Got rid of it! I challenge you to tell me the pagerank of any webpage on the web.
          This statement isn't accurate at all. Google only "got rid of" EXTERNAL PageRank, which is the little green bar they used to show in their Google Bar, as well as some other places.


          However, it's likely that Google still uses INTERNAL PageRank in their algo, which they keep secret. Just because they no longer tell the public what the PageRank of a page is doesn't mean that they don't use it any longer.
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      • Profile picture of the author DABK
        I am going to disagree with you here. It is the kiss of death, it's true, but not necessarily for you.

        It matters what you call it because what you call it determines what you do.

        Let's go with examples.

        I copy your article and put it on my site. Who has the duplicate content?

        If my SEO is better than yours, I do. Google will show my version of the content in the SERPs, the page on my site, but will not show yours. If I'm really good at SEO, and I am, I'm going to make it quite high, people will see your content, on my site, and I will make money.

        If it were a penalty, I'd be taking your content, publish it on my site, and that would be the end of it, Google's penalizing me would mean the page on my site that has your content will never come up in SERP's, I will not make money unless I send people to that page through paid traffic.

        If I called it a penalty, I'd never take your good content, put it on my site. But, if it's not a penalty, I'll take your content and make me some mullah with your content while you, debunker of the myth of duplicate content non-penatly, cry your eyes out.

        See the difference?

        PS The fact that there's no penalty is why people who are not great at SEO should not post content that's on their site on someone else's site.

        PPS Do you know how I found out about this penalty/non-penalty thingie?

        I had an awesome article on my first site... For a low search, low competition keyword, it's true, but it was making me a few dollars a month. I was happy.

        Then, I heard about article marketing (didn't know it at the time, but it was article directory marketing). So, guess what I did? I posted that fine article o' mine on ezinearticles.com

        Within 3 days, the ezine page with my article shot to #2, while mine dropped from #2 to inexistence. So did the little trickle of money.

        After a few weeks of me learning and applying SEO, the page on ezinearticles.com dropped out of SERP's and mind reappeared, this time as #1. And my little trickle of money started again.

        Originally Posted by kindsvater View Post


        So who cares what you call it?

        Duplicate content is the kiss of death.

        Worse, Google may assign the PageRank from your duplicate page to a more valued page. Again, whether you want to consider that a "penalty" or not is pure semantics.

        Duplicate content is, in most situations, only going to show if that is all Google has to show, or if there is a search for a quoted phrase in the content. For a decade Google has made an attempt to vary what is shown on its first page because a page of listings which identical information is not a good user experience.

        That doesn't mean someone cannot come up with a search example which is an exception to the rule.

        But you can take this to the bank: eliminating duplicate content is one of the most important things you can do for your website's rankings.

        Here is a lengthy analysis from Moz which similarly points out those claiming there is no duplicate content "penalty" are making, at best, an irrelevant semantic argument - who cares what you call it if Google is not highly ranking your site.

        https://moz.com/blog/duplicate-conte...st-panda-world

        .
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      • Profile picture of the author Mehdib
        Originally Posted by kindsvater View Post

        This "no penalty" canard has repeatedly been debunked here for years. It is one of the most dangerous claims that is incredibly harmful to new marketers.
        Just wanted to say "insert thank you gif here"
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  • Profile picture of the author Kay King
    "Ranking" doesn't necessarily refer to "page rank".

    Cutts left google in 2014. He's referred to often as giving "insider info" - but, though he was good at explanations, he told you no more than Google wanted you to know.
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  • Profile picture of the author malaker
    Thanks for your responses
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  • Profile picture of the author ForumGuru
    Banned
    Technically, Cutts has been on leave from Google. Over the past few days he has been tweeting some stuff from Google I/O 2016.









    Supposedly, John Mueller, Gary Illyes and Pierre Far took over web spam...but it's not likely that any of those guys will be the overall spokesperson that Matt became.

    Cheers

    -don
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  • Profile picture of the author kindsvater
    I got my info...Straight from the horses mouth. (Matt Cutts)
    Thanks for the laugh. Made my day!

    .
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  • Profile picture of the author BradVert2013
    Go straight to the source. Here's what Google says about duplicate content:

    https://support.google.com/webmaster...er/66359?hl=en
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  • Profile picture of the author Randall Magwood
    Originally Posted by malaker View Post

    I put a book on Amazon and the main book description is almost identical to my landing page for the book. Will google see it as duplicate content?
    No they won't. And don't rely on Google for success. A new algorithm can trip you up at any time. But no, this isn't duplicate content.
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  • Profile picture of the author kindsvater
    Google on duplicate content, this week, flat says if there is duplicate content someone is not getting shown in the search results - someone may not even get indexed:

    what would happen if we find exactly the same content somewhere else, then we try to make a decision on which one of these is the canonical version, and we'll pick that one for indexing.
    On whether this is a "penalty":

    it's not that [duplicate content is] hijacking your search results, or that there's anything kind of problematic happening there. It's just a matter of our search algorithms trying to figure out which one of these pages is the more relevant one in which situation when someone is searching.
    Exactly. And it's going to be impossibly tough for an affiliate to convince Google their copy of the merchant's content is what deserves to be shown.

    Those who say there is no "penalty" and stating, or implying, webmasters should have duplicate content are really missing the boat. Google is not showing searchers your duplicate content and that's the bottom line.

    Doesn't matter whether you call it a penalty or the Peanut Butter Sandwich Effect, if you're asking about Google that means you're asking about search engine rankings and being visible to web searchers. If you want to be visible don't have duplicate content. Period.

    Then there's the Panda algorithm and its evaluation of your content ....

    .
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    • Profile picture of the author webmarke
      Originally Posted by kindsvater View Post

      Google on duplicate content, this week, flat says if there is duplicate content someone is not getting shown in the search results - someone may not even get indexed:

      On whether this is a "penalty":

      Exactly. And it's going to be impossibly tough for an affiliate to convince Google their copy of the merchant's content is what deserves to be shown.

      Those who say there is no "penalty" and stating, or implying, webmasters should have duplicate content are really missing the boat. Google is not showing searchers your duplicate content and that's the bottom line.

      Doesn't matter whether you call it a penalty or the Peanut Butter Sandwich Effect, if you're asking about Google that means you're asking about search engine rankings and being visible to web searchers. If you want to be visible don't have duplicate content. Period.

      Then there's the Panda algorithm and its evaluation of your content ....

      .
      Wrong again. Of course if you spam then you will get penalized. But if you are not spamming, you will not.

      Refer to the video from Matt Cutts in post #4. Some of the most popular sites on the web are curated sites (duplicate content)

      You can take your word for it or you can take Matt Cutts own words. Me...I am going with Matt Cutts. After all..He worked for Google and It was his Job.
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    • Profile picture of the author DABK
      "If you want to be visible don't have duplicate content. Period."

      Well, not quite period. If you want to be visible, don't have duplicate content if you can't convince Google that your version is the one to be shown. Period.

      Because Google does show duplicate content in the search results.

      Yes, for most people, it's best not to have duplicate content. But that's because they don't know how to get Google to show the duplicate content. And, yes, it's harder to convince Google that your site's version should be shown over some site like Amazon.com. But that doesn't mean it never works.



      Originally Posted by kindsvater View Post

      Google on duplicate content, this week, flat says if there is duplicate content someone is not getting shown in the search results - someone may not even get indexed:

      On whether this is a "penalty":

      Exactly. And it's going to be impossibly tough for an affiliate to convince Google their copy of the merchant's content is what deserves to be shown.

      Those who say there is no "penalty" and stating, or implying, webmasters should have duplicate content are really missing the boat. Google is not showing searchers your duplicate content and that's the bottom line.

      Doesn't matter whether you call it a penalty or the Peanut Butter Sandwich Effect, if you're asking about Google that means you're asking about search engine rankings and being visible to web searchers. If you want to be visible don't have duplicate content. Period.

      Then there's the Panda algorithm and its evaluation of your content ....

      .
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  • Profile picture of the author Kay King
    You keep referencing a Cutts video from 2013 - and Brian is referencing current Google information. More current info is good as all Cutts info is at least 2 years old.

    As for the recent tweets - those are from an annual google event where Cutts was a guest and part of a discussion there.

    In 2013 - you could do a google search for a common ailment or med or similar popular keywords - and the first page of google results would often be "authority niche sites" with the same exact article....

    Quite different now.
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    • Profile picture of the author webmarke
      Originally Posted by Kay King View Post

      You keep referencing a Cutts video from 2013 - and Brian is referencing current Google information. More current info is good as all Cutts info is at least 2 years old.

      As for the recent tweets - those are from an annual google event where Cutts was a guest and part of a discussion there.

      In 2013 - you could do a google search for a common ailment or med or similar popular keywords - and the first page of google results would often be "authority niche sites" with the same exact article....

      Quite different now.
      That's quite entertaining..lol

      But the fact that some of the top authority sites which rank high on google are curated (duplicate content) sites debunks your entire the theory.

      But i guess the facts don't Matter.

      At the end of the day you are wrong...Sorry? LMAO
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  • Profile picture of the author ForumGuru
    Banned
    Lotta Matt Cutts talk on this thread (14 references including quotes prior to this post)... Even though he is officially "on leave" I believe Google still pays his insurance, and I'm guessing he still has access to most of the information that he always did, if he wants it.

    For those of you that may not be aware --> Cutts is buddies with good ol' Leo LaPorte, and he regularly appears on Leo's This Week In Google (TWiT.tv) to discuss things Google related and goings on in the cloud.

    Here are a few of Leo's shows that Cutts has appeared on during Mar-May 2016 for those of you that still follow Cutts and want to hear some of what he has to say.

    This Week in Google 353: Honey, I Livestreamed the Kid


    This Week in Google 348: It's Bots All the Way Down


    This Week in Google 344: The Thermally Effective Networked Tent


    I've been watching Leo since 1998 when he had a show on ZDNet called The Screen Savers and another called Call For Help. The network later became Tech TV.

    https://www.youtube.com/user/ThisWeekInG

    He founded and launched TWiT.tv in 2005.

    https://twit.tv/people/leo-laporte

    For those of you that enjoy listening to discussion of Google by Google employees and other major players, then Leo's channel may be of some benefit too you.

    This Week in Google is recorded live every Wednesday at 4:00pm Eastern and Jeff Jarvis is Leo's co-host on the show.

    https://twit.tv/shows/this-week-in-google

    https://twit.tv/episodes?filter[shows]=1653

    Cheers

    -don
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  • Profile picture of the author JamesAlmeida
    Banned
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  • Profile picture of the author Steve B
    I don't profess to know much about duplicate content or Google's algorithm or Matt Cutts.

    I do know that Google indexes duplicate content. Type this into the Google Search bar: ""What a Young Wife Ought to Know"

    It's a very funny article written in 1902 by Emma Frances Angell Drake.

    The search results return 5,080 results, many of which are the complete text of the original article - duplicate content on many sites - all indexed.

    I believe original, unique articles (text) are the preferred way to go for most web sites. It's what will set your site apart from (and hopefully above) the competition.

    It's what your followers want to read.

    Personally, I think trying to guess what Google is "thinking" is a losing battle. Put original, well written, niche relevant content on your site and you'll never have to wonder what Google thinks - it will be treated well.

    Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author Kurt
    Google will return dupe results for very long tail, specific queries. It may also return duplicate results for news queries. It's important to note that news sites are hand selected and white listed. It's also important to note that Google doesn't handle all queries in the same way, nor does it treat all sites/domains the same way.

    However, while Google doesn't generally penalize duplicate content, it does have a duplicate content FILTER, which in many ways is worse than a penalty, as a filter doesn't list pages it feels are duplicates at all. A penalty implies Google just drops the ranking, not omit the page completely from the SERPs. Google will penalize dupe content if it feels the dupe content is trying to "game" their SERPs.

    Google is bound by logic. It makes no sense to list multiple pages that have the same content, unless the search was specifically for that content or there isn't any other content available for that search query.

    Also, it's doubtful Google sees many pages as being a complete duplicate of another or not. In many cases, it probably gives a duplicate score, such as this page is 30% the same as another and this could affect ranking.

    While we can debate the effects of duplicate content forever, we can probably assume correctly that not having duplicate content in the eyes of Google will be optimal and always at least as good, if not better, than dupe content.

    PS. Matt Cutts was the spokesman for the spam department at Google. He was being paid to reduce spam, that's how he earned his paycheck. Anyone that followed what he says closely knows he put out a lot of misinformation. The only value in listening to what Cutts said was as a poker player and trying to get a "read" on what Google wanted you to think and why.
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  • Profile picture of the author johnbs
    There's nothing to worry about. You shouldn't get penalized for similar content being in an Amazon description and on your homepage. Unless you have another blog and use the same content or copy someone else's, you should be good.
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  • Profile picture of the author ankushmahajan
    Yes it will count as duplicate, its true Google won't penalize you for this but for better search presence you should need to write unique description for your book.
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  • Profile picture of the author kindsvater
    Genius logic: no problem with duplicate content, so 10,000 Amazon affiliates load up their sites with copies of the same Amazon product descriptions - all expecting to be on the first page of Google.

    .
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  • Profile picture of the author TheGMa
    REALLY?

    Did anyone think to simply refer to Google's own rules?

    Here's the link, again.

    https://support.google.com/webmaster...er/66359?hl=en

    Why does everyone have to make things so complicated?

    - Annie
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  • Profile picture of the author TheGMa
    Google internal ranking system: Interesting point, Kurt.

    Frankly, I don't see how landing on page 1 could be possible without some sort of ranking algorithm, as in this site's info is better than that site's info, or this site is more trustworthy than that site.

    With that in mind, I went out on the net to search for some answers using the phrase google ranking comparative studies.

    About half way down the results page filled with Google Scholar Metrics sites, I found Brian Dean's team study for Backlinko: We Analyzed 1 Million Google Search Results. Here’s What We Learned About SEO, complete with links to info sources.

    I remember reading the report when it came out last month. It's excellent.

    Thanks for the heads up about the Google Duplicate Content link, Kurt. Sorry I missed it in a previous post. I've been a bit frustrated lately with the stubborn determination of human nature to avoid going to the source.

    Here a few weeks ago, I rec'd a call from one of my roommates who was visiting a friend down the road.

    My roomie wanted me to go online and find out some information about his friend's health insurance. I told him to tell his friend to call the number on the back of his insurance card.

    Like that.

    - Annie
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  • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
    First off, what the OP described likely wouldn't even trip the duplicate content filter. As I read it, a piece of his page is nearly the same as a piece of Amazon's for the same item. That's hardly the same as duplicating Amazon's output on an affiliate site. Not apples and oranges, more like cherries and watermelons.

    That being said, Google has always said that they would serve the most fitting copy of any duplicate content, and that the copy shown may not be the one the owner wants. If three of us search for an item - one in the USA, one in India and one in Africa, say, the odds of all three of us getting the exact same result are pretty low. Back in the article marketing heyday, I had articles placed on multiple sites located in multiple countries. That's exactly what happened - the copy hosted in that country was the copy that showed up.

    If your business depends on your content being seen on your site, avoid duplicate entries on multiple sites. If you're working out on the long tail, and the benefits of any exposure outweigh the benefits of any particular copy showing up, don't worry, be happy that you show up, period.

    As for the curated authority sites our buddy likes to point out when he isn't laughing his brains off, they aren't posting pure copies of content - they add their own commentary. The exception is, as Kurt pointed out, news sites and handpicked whitelisted sites. The outliers who make this work don't negate the effect such tactics would have on the rest of us mere mortals. Or, more commonly, "the exception proves the rule."
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  • Profile picture of the author Jonathan 2.0
    When it comes to SEO/Google I think the best option is to try and play by the "rules." (Meaning good HTML title tags, H1 tags, KW density, and relevant/yet diverse backlinks.)

    It's when you try and "cheat" the system that things go wrong.
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