Duplicate Content Prevention: Canonical Tag

by Scott Allen - March 9, 2009 
Filed Under SEO

As you know, duplicate content can often create problems for SEO and hinder a website’s rankings. This particular problem shows up in a multitude of situations, including any time multiple URL’s are generated (tracking campaigns, etc), or where content is database-driven (for example CMS’s such as e-commerce or blogs).

It is always recommended that you keep your site’s URL structure as clean as possible, but recently the search engines have come together to create a backup option that can also help – the canonical tag.

To use it, insert the following in between the <head> and </head> tags on your site.

<link rel="canonical" href="http://www.yoursite.com/page.php" />

Some guidelines:

Concerning the passing of link value, this tag will function similarly to a 301 redirect. All the pages that tag a certain URL as the canonical URL, will redirect the link juice to the canonical URL.

If you are using WordPress, you can easily implement this fix with Joost de Valk’s Canonical URL’s plugin.

More Info on Canonical Tags

You may also want to read: Duplicate Content Prevention: WWW vs. Non-WWW and .Htaccess

UPDATE:
The All in One SEO Pack plugin now includes the same functionality as the Canonical URL plugin.

 



Comments

3 Responses to “Duplicate Content Prevention: Canonical Tag”

  1. Duplicate Content Prevention: WWW vs. Non-WWW and .htaccess | WebGeek on March 9th, 2009 12:55 pm

    [...] You may also want to read: Duplicate Content Prevention: Canonical Tag [...]

  2. jeff on March 10th, 2009 2:39 pm

    Thank you for your great advice!

    jeff

  3. Will on March 10th, 2009 9:11 pm

    Nice, will come in handy..

    Thanks!

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