Just a few days ago, I receive an email from a reader about the concern of duplicate content issue when using press release after he read my one of my post about getting traffic from press release. I think this is one of the myth in SEO or in general marketing context.
What Is Duplicate Content?
First of all, we need to understand the definition of duplicate content and why it happens. When Google refers to duplicate content issue, they mean the same content that can be accessed via different URL in the same domain. For example, you have a page with unique that is about dog training, i.e. YourDomain.com/Dog-Training, this page can also be accessed via multiple URLs because of session id or you have created multiple page with different design for split testing purpose, such as via YourDomain.com/Dog-Training.html, YourDomain.com/Dog-Training1.html, then this could post a duplicate content issue.
If you submitted your very same post to the article directories, this is NOT a duplicate content issue but content syndication. There are a lot of misunderstanding about content syndication versus duplicate content. Of of the most common way that you might see is that your blog posts were scrapped and posted on some other blogs via RSS. There are a lot of content scrapping software that are able to scrap content easily and get posted automatically to the blog to generate content. Most of them will provide a link back to the original source to acknowledge the author.
This is the situation where you have the same piece of content showing up in multiple websites with different URLs and this is not considered as duplicate content. Similarly, you can also submit the same article to multiple article directories or using software like Article Marketing Robot for mass distribution of your article. This content syndication will result in multiple backlinks to your website and direct traffic to your site because you have increased the exposure of your website.
Another good example is press release. Most of the reputable press release sites will get a lot of syndication from other news agency and blogs, therefore resulting in massive exposure of the single press release. That’s one of the reason why press release can be extremely powerful to generate buzz for product launch and any kind of event.
Unlimited Traffic And Backlinks?
Now, hopefully you understand clearly the difference of duplicate content and content syndication. You might be wondering do you need just 1 piece of content to get unlimited traffic and backlinks since you can “syndicate to a tons of sites”? The answer is NO.
Although technically you can submit your article to as many sites as possible, the chances for all those sites to get indexed by Google is slim. Please note that there is no penalty from Google and that’s just how Google will treat the excessive syndicated content as supplemental index database, as shown below:
Having said that, you still be able to gain the benefit of having direct traffic from the sites you submitted to. If you would like to gain the backlinks that are indexed by Google, you need to provide unique content.
There are a number of platforms that support content syndication such as Ping.fm, Hellotxt.com and Pixelpipe.com. Each of them contains around 30++ social sites such as Facebook, Myspace, WordPress, FriendFeed, etc…that allow you to syndicate your content. You are more than welcomed to setup the account so that you can syndicate your content easily. If you would like to automate the task of submission, you can check out Bookmark Lover, one of the service I am using to help to syndicate my content to Ping, Hellotxt and Pixelpipe and other sites automatically to generate more traffic and backlinks to my site. I have been using it since its launch and there are quite a number of the updates (including April 2012) of the software and I am pretty happy with their support as well.
I hope this post clears out the myth of duplicate content vs content syndication. As usual, leave me your comment below to share your thoughts on duplicate content, content syndication or any questions you have.