Duplicate Content | Distributing Product Descriptions Without Being Penalized by Google

Zeb Welborn

The owner of Welborn Social Media and the founder of The Tutoring Solution.My goal is to help business owners share the passion they have for their business with as many potential customers as possible.By helping passionate people achieve their dreams I am helping to create a society of passionate leaders that will help inspire others to make their dreams a reality.

The question:  How can we distribute product descriptions to other websites without being penalized by Google for having duplicate content?

At Welborn Social Media, we make sure to have a deep, thorough, and (most importantly) up to date understanding of how social media works and the latest policies of key internet companies such as Google or Facebook. Every once in a while, a client will come to us with a question that requires us to do a little research, and we see this as an opportunity to learn new information, grow our knowledge, and share our findings with our community.

Such was the case when one of our clients came to us wanting to share their products on the websites of their affiliates.

Duplicate Content Search Engine Optimization SEO

Duplicate Content

From working with many clients and getting their websites to rank higher on Google search results, we have learned that Google does not like duplicate content. What is duplicate content? In simple terms, it is when words, images, or entire web pages appear over and over again throughout the internet. Most of the time this is done accidentally or with good intentions, like products sold on different e-commerce sites or sites that have both a normal and a printer-friendly version of a page. Other times duplicate content can be an attempt to gain more links to a site, which could make them rank higher on search results. However Google is not a fan of the latter and will often times penalize sites that are trying to “trick” Google into ranking them higher.

Another problem that arises is that Google will omit web sites that are too similar to each other. If I want to search for an article online, they don’t want the search results to show me 10 different sites with the same article. They want to show me several different articles. Sometimes a site will publish a story and also have that story published on five other sites. Google is then forced to choose only one of those to display. If a webmaster does not know what they are doing, they can run into a problem where their site is not showing up because other sites are being displayed instead of theirs.

So what are people with legitimate reasons for having duplicate content to do?

The answer:

The solution lies in a line of HTML code known as the Canonical Tag.

The canonical tag is a way for websites to point towards the original (or canonical) source of content and give them all the credit, ensuring that Google displays them over any other copies of the content. It is a way for people to publish their content on several sites, without making it seem like they are simply trying to trick Google into thinking that the content is important and should be ranked higher. However, it does mean that all the non-canonical copies of the content won’t show up on search engines, only the version that they are all pointing to will show up. In most cases, this is not really a problem because people can still access those pages by clicking through any website where a duplicate may be found. Because the canonical tag is all about giving proper credit, instead of taking undeserved credit, it can be used to have duplicate content online without problems.

That said, there are still methods that Google considers “best practices” and would be preferable over the canonical tag. Fresh, original, unique content will always be preferred over copy and pasting. So the best way to go about duplicate content would be ensuring that content is not actually duplicate. If you want to share the same text, image, or link, it would be best to always frame it in a new and unique way for every web page that it is on. Google’s policies are always changing and what is acceptable today may not be acceptable in the future. To safeguard against having to redo your web page in the future, just make it unique to begin with.

Was Article Marketing Killed By The Panda Update? Your New Strategy Part 2

Zeb Welborn

The owner of Welborn Social Media and the founder of The Tutoring Solution.My goal is to help business owners share the passion they have for their business with as many potential customers as possible.By helping passionate people achieve their dreams I am helping to create a society of passionate leaders that will help inspire others to make their dreams a reality.

Can article marketing still work with a strategy that respects Google’s mission?

Google basically doesn’t want imbalanced situations anymore. And some of our behavior has tipped it off to how the lack of algorithm changes have left the door open for certain predators to be overfed and quality content, quality user experience, to suffer.

Google Search Engine Optimization SEO Article Marketing

Panda Update

So with keeping the above mind, how would you imagine that article marketing can be performed with success? If you’re familiar with what article marketing is and the SEO strategies themselves, you’ll likely have ideas of changes that could be made to the traditional strategy to see results again. It’s likely not very different from what’s actually worked for me and for others.

The ability to recognize what is needed in nearly every case is still in your hands.

Here’s a simple strategy that you can use to determine exactly how article marketing will work for yourself and for your clients.

  1. Understand which concepts are accepted and effective (on page seo, anchor text linking, posting on do follow directories).
  2. Have quality content on the site you work for which reflects the keywords you attempt to rank for (very important for small scale seo efforts)
  3. Experiment by implementing a common sense strategy which includes numbers one and two.
  4. Track what was done and recognize your averages; how much of such and such strategy had to be done and how many spots did I move up in the engines as a result?
  5. When you have a ratio, you’ll have a general expectation of how much you need to produce to get where you want to be.

The truth is that when it comes to article marketing, you don’t need a bunch of hidden websites, a spinner producing hundreds of articles a day or other tricks, although some may be doing just find with those right now…Others, obviously, have suffered. What you’ll likely need in the long run, and what Google is getting better at determining you have, is a creative and smart writer to do your research, provide quality content and weave in SEO in the ways that work, before posting the information on some of the most prominent article directories which will actually produce link recognition. And, of course, a good foundation is the best insurance. The better the site actually reflects your goals, your target keywords, the more manageable the job becomes with only a set of forthright tools in your SEO tool bag.

The following is true about the search engines and will likely remain true for some time:

  • Unique content is still valuable.
  • Quality content is still valuable.
  • Content which provides information for the keywords it intends to rank for is still valuable.
  • Giving the searcher what they want to find, being honorable with your use of keywords, both are still valuable.
  • All well intentioned tools which are in line with Google’s goals, mentioned above, still work.
  • Strategies which implement these tools can still work…

They might just need a little tweaking.

For more on the Panda Update from Google representative and leader Matt Cutts, hear his interpretation here.

Good luck in your SEO efforts.

Was Article Marketing Killed By The Panda Update? Your New Strategy Part 1

Zeb Welborn

The owner of Welborn Social Media and the founder of The Tutoring Solution.My goal is to help business owners share the passion they have for their business with as many potential customers as possible.By helping passionate people achieve their dreams I am helping to create a society of passionate leaders that will help inspire others to make their dreams a reality.

Is article marketing dead? Did the Panda Update finally bid the strategy a strong farewell? Well, is anchor text dead? “Nope,” is the direct answer. Google just got better at determining when our use of the text was out of line with their ultimate goal. And for article marketing, the situation is no different.

When it comes to SEO, it pays to be a bottom line thinker. And the bottom line hasn’t changed even when the algorithms have; the algorithms that so many SEO experts have feared, these formulas which are actually misinterpreted in forums where people go to get the good information in regards to SEO…

These have simply helped Google accomplish its’ ultimate goal; and for those willing to get to the essentials of the situation and profit from that perspective, there’s still room for this good fortune.

Bottom line number one is that Google keeps formulating steps to create a user experience where their user finds the content they are looking for without being manipulated into trekking through a maze of websites which have absolutely nothing to do with user desires or poorly fulfill them at best. Part of what we have to do, as experts, and more honestly, as students of SEO, is experiment with that bottom line when updates such as these occur.

We have to realize what has worked for us in the past, the foundational tools that Google has no problem with, and look at how our strategies, the ways we implement those tools can be tweaked or altered to fit in line with this destination.

Article Marketing Search Engine Optimization SEO Google Panda Update

Article Marketing

A successful expert in SEO, is an experimenter and a scholar; someone who is capable of gaining insight, observing limitations, and falling back on the essentials as a framework to understand where to go next in ever changing situations.

That person can still see gains via article marketing (and in other tools which are recognized as honest by Google), even though well known hubs may have some members whose results have tanked.

To become that kind of expert, we have to observe our success in work, track progress, think of why certain things have worked in terms of concepts we know through experience can breed success; such as accurate on page SEO and anchor text linking, personally testing limits on article proliferation, seeing if our results fair better with diverse website use rather than single website repetitive use, and basically giving the leader of the search engines another one of its’ bottom line objectives: plenty of quality original content, spread around well received websites, so that our balanced little search engine ecosystem is maintained.

Stay Tuned for Was Article Marketing Killed by the Panda Update?  Your New Strategy Part 2

Gotcha Covered | Take Your Windows from Ordinary to Extraordinary!

Zeb Welborn

The owner of Welborn Social Media and the founder of The Tutoring Solution.My goal is to help business owners share the passion they have for their business with as many potential customers as possible.By helping passionate people achieve their dreams I am helping to create a society of passionate leaders that will help inspire others to make their dreams a reality.

Gotcha Covered of Chino Hills

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