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    August 18, 2017 by Lindsey Smith

    Canonicals help search engines like Google determine which piece of content is original verse, copied, or duplicate pieces. Initially, canonicals were used to prevent plagiarism penalties and allow websites to quote to share snippets of content without getting hurt in the search engines. However, canonicals can also be used within a single website to share which page is the original and most important. Here are a few reasons you should use self-referencing canonicals in your content.

    Self-Referencing Canonicals Add Clarity

    If you’re creating multiple URLs for your website, then search engines could get confused about which ones are the most important. If you’re creating vanity URLs for marketing or analytics purposes, then these self-referencing canonicals can ensure that the other URLs aren’t crawled and indexed. Think about self-referencing URLs as options for protecting your content marketing efforts and getting the most out of your original creation.

    Self-Referencing Canonicals Fix Human Error

    One of the main examples of uses for self-referencing canonicals is URLs with multiple variations. The team at The SEM Post covered a few times when this would happen, like if customers typed in HTTP instead of HTTPS. The same can be said for URLs with and without the www. beforehand or URLs with or without capitalizations. The SEM Post also suggested using 301 redirects in these cases.

    There’s No Harm in Adding Self-Referencing Canonicals

    One of the most important statements shared about self-referencing canonicals is that they will not hurt your SEO strategy. Adding them only takes a few seconds and they can prevent confusion on behalf of your customer and search engines. The low risk means it’s worth adding these tags just in case.

    To learn more about the dangers of duplicate content and importance of canonicals in your SEO strategy, talk to the organic search team at Exults. They can work to increase your visibility and grow your organic footprint.

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