Unique Content or Useful Content

With Google Hummingbird rolling out for already a month, many of us wonder if the truth in Google public claim that claiming no one noticed and no one should notice. This is a major change in Google search algorithm after about 12 years and though still in its alpha stage, many are already keeping close tabs on the slightest SERP movements.

Google Panda focuses more on unique content, ditching duplicate content generated websites out of its search results. Hummingbird is more tuned towards giving what the searchers want and looking for. Asking Questions and searching online for answers is a big part of this algorithm change.

A move towards an elevated user experience transition?

So how will Google hummingbird impact search engine rankings?

While nothing is confirmed as always with Google changes and refreshes, we can only advise what Google has been telling all webmasters from the start. Build websites for searchers and your only focus should be that.

Unique content which is useful for the larger community in your niche should be your starting point in creating a user-friendly and search engine friendly website.

Thin duplicate content whacked by Google

Lull before the storm as we see Matt Cutts from Google in his youtube video addressing calmly on the importance on unique content in our websites. Specifically targeted at thin affiliate websites, the question in focal point is how different are yours from your competitors?

Are you pulling the exact product description and content right from the main seller’s booth?

To summarize, are you one of the lazy affiliate contributing to the tons of duplicate content on the web? Are you one of those who blindly use the automated tools to pull content and publish on your webpages, often not even knowing the exact products you are promoting?

As with earlier Google lull before the storms, we know something’s cooking and it doesn’t smell right. So if you have affiliate websites with thousands of thin content, it may be time to get busy again.

What Google wants?

Value-added websites that separates itself from your niche competitors. Unique and original content is just one of the suggested main ingredient in Google’s latest recipe for better web experience.

Is Duplicate Content a Problem for SEO?

Definitely so if we are relying on search engines like Google for traffic.

Google openly wants to create and build search engines which advocates good user experience, and multiple webpages with largely identical content blocks which will only show out repeated listings on Google search results will certainly NOT provide such good user experience. As such, Google frown on duplicate content, especially duplicated content created deliberately to manipulate its search engine rankings.

How does duplicate content affect our search engine optimization?

Duplicate content results either with intentional motives or from ignorance. Inexperience webmasters have to observe more about canonicalization and learn to implement measures to prevent duplicate content due to canonicalization.

Remember to indicate your preferred domain url and set the parameter handlers in Google webmaster first. Example of duplicate content due to canonicalization:

http://www.website.com/products/brand/camera

http://website.com/products/brand/camera

http://www.website.com/products?category=camera&brand=canon&cruel=no

https://www.website.com/products?category=camera&brand=canon&cruel=no

http://website.com/shop/index.php?product_id=32&highlight=canon+camera&cat_id=1&sessionid=123&affid=431


Google loves good quality and unique content in webpages and will reward them with higher positions rankings in its search engine.

When the content is optimized correctly for the desired keywords and keyword phrases, the result will be very deserving to those who put in the extra mile of effort in their content.

However if there are multiple webpages of closely similar blocks of content within or across the domain and the intent is to manipulate search engine rankings, these webpages or even the entire website may be deindexed.

Of course, these penalty will only be handed out after manual human reviews.

Why the need for intentional duplicate content?

Attempts to manipulate search engine rankings.

Some webmasters assume by creating duplicate content on the same domain and sub domains, the probability of their webpages ranked for their targeted keywords or keyword phrases will no doubt increase too.

A more popular way to avoid duplicate content is content spinning, creating multiple versions from the same article.

However if content spinning is not done properly, you will end up with gibberish and nonsensical content which will do more harm than good in Google’s context.

Content spinning involves more than just word spinning. It involves sentence spinning, paragraph spinning and for advance users, even article spinning.

How to detect if our spun content is unique, or rather good enough to pass Google?

We can use software or Copyscape (duplicate content checker) to measure the uniqueness of our spun articles. Spun articles with at least 75% uniqueness (debatable figures) are considered to be distinct content and good enough to fool Google. Bear in mind though that Google never did acknowledge these industry claims for content uniqueness and how Google really verify content uniqueness is never disclosed openly as well.

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