K: Let us talk about the infamous duplicate content penalty for a second here. Again, we rarely go to an SEO meet up without inevitably getting asked, “Oh doesn’t XYZ strategy get you hit with a duplicate content penalty”?
R: Yes, this is the most annoying question to hear because we’ve heard it hundreds and hundreds of times. So, duplicate content is an, is a problem within your own website so if you have a bunch of pages that all have the same title tag and same manudescription, then Google is probably going to consider them to be duplicate content at the same type of page. That is where the whole duplicate content thing came from. You want to make sure that your title tags on every page are separate. Unless it actually is the same page in which case you want to use the canonical tag; <rel=canonical>, and you can Google that if you want further instructions, in order to let Google know exactly what page you want to be located at, what URL, whatever. But, that’s not what we’re talking about anyway. The important thing is that if that you have the same article, for instance, on multiple pages out there on the internet, you know, if you publish an article, the EZINE articles right? That is going to get redistributed all around the Internet, because ezine allows people to take these articles and republish them on their own websites. So there’s, anytime you see a popular article on ezine that makes it to the front page, it’s gonna be posted on thousands of different websites. Now, if you just take a look at that, you’ll see that if, you know, take a random sentence out of that article and Google it, in the exact matching quotes, and then you’ll find all of these different pages that are showing up for it, right? So then, some of them will be outranking the ezine articles quite possibly. Others, I don’t know as well, but either way, they’re there. They haven’t disappeared. So if they haven’t disappeared, that means that there really isn’t a duplicate content penalty because they’re ranking when we search for it.
K: Yeah, furthermore, these other copies of it are gonna get trafficked, and we know that for a fact because we have taken copies of ezine articles and put them on the Internet and got them trafficked. Now look, at the end of the day, Google doesn’t, is not in the business of trying to ensure that the original author gets credit for his or her work. Google doesn’t really care. Google was in the business of making its users happy. So if Google runs its own split tests and determines that when it sends a user to your site, they are less likely to bounce than when it sends a user to ezine articles, Google’s gonna start sending us people to your site. You know, they aren’t in the business of trying to be equitable or fair, they’re just trying their customers the result that they want, you know, as quickly as possible.
R: The end. So our task for you if you believe that duplicate content is a big deal, is to steal an article form ezinearticles, put it in your website, and then build a ton of backlinks to it and watch it outrank the majority of the other articles that are the exact same even though they were out there earlier and they might even have a homepage page rank that’s higher than your home page because of the fact that you have backlinks to that article. That is the main differenciating factor. Anytime people say, “Oh you know, it’s a duplicate content penalty”, or whatever, more likely they just haven’t built enough backlinks to that article to make it stand out from the other competitors.