If you regularly spend money on content for your website copy or blog posts, you understand how frustrating it can be to see this content come and go. A few weeks after you post a new blog that you spent good money on, it may no longer hold any value to your website.
When good content goes unnoticed, it’s tempting to want to reuse it in some manner. Unfortunately, a lot of entrepreneurs and business owners go about this in the wrong way and get penalised by search engines. This can dramatically decrease your search engine rankings.
So, does this mean that you can’t use existing content? No, you’re able to republish content, as long as you go about it in the right way. Use the following suggestions to republish your existing content without getting penalised.
Correctly Letting Search Engines Know About Your Duplicate Content
First, you need to make sure that you’re letting search engines know that this new post is duplicate content. The way to do this is to include a canonical URL. Syndication of articles is a major business. If you spend any time on news aggregator websites, then you’ve seen syndicated content that’s posted on multiple news sites.
How to Add a Canonical URL
If search engines had to penalize every site that uses syndicated content, then news sites would have trouble staying at the top of the search engine rankings. The solution is the canonical URL. Adding this little bit of code is easy. You simply add a link tag in the <head> section of your HTML. The full code would look something like this:
<link rel=“canonical” href=“http://example.com/post” />
Adding the canonical link lets search engines know that the content they’re crawling is a duplicate of another URL. The URL that is included in the link tag is the URL of the original post. This link tag must be placed on every page where you plan on republishing your content.
Additional Tips for Using Canonical URLs
Make sure that you don’t edit the content that you’re republishing. If you notice grammar mistakes or other small errors, you can fix them, but don’t edit major parts of your article. Otherwise, the search engines will still count the pages as two separate posts.
The canonical URL link should never be used as a form of black-hat SEO. It should only be used in its proper context. This will defeat the purpose of using the canonical URL in the first place.
You should also include an actual link at the beginning or end of the duplicate content that links back to the original source. This will be beneficial if you are syndicating your content for use on other sites. Each time the content is republished, you’re adding another back link to your site.
Republishing content is a useful way to get more value out of the content that you pay for. Spending money on the creation of original content can be a major part of your marketing budget. Most people can only pay for so many articles per month. Instead of letting these articles go to waste after they’ve outlived their usefulness, consider using a canonical URL to republish them.
You can republish your content on a separate website that you own or allow other sites to republish the content—as long as they correctly use the canonical URL link.
If you have old content that you would like to republish, make sure that you’re going about it in the right way.