Over the last 6 months it seems like Google’s very own Matt Cutts is making headlines on a weekly basis. Cutts typically sheds some light on SEO by answering a question someone sends in, but last week he made an announcement through Twitter about a new tool that you can use to report scraped, or duplicate, content.
Here is the tweet:
If you see a scraper URL outranking the original source of content in Google, please tell us about it: http://t.co/WohXQmI45X
— Matt Cutts (@mattcutts) February 27, 2014
Do you ever get frustrated when you see a competitor’s site that you know has duplicate content rank higher than your own quality content-produced site? If so you’re not alone. We occasionally face this frustration ourselves and there isn’t much we can do about it
However over the last few years Google has made countless algorithm updates to resolve this issue and they’ve become quite efficient at detecting sites that use duplicate or low quality content and devaluing their ranking. However sometimes the giant search engine misses one and it becomes a thorn in our side.
The new tool, called Scraper Report, can be used to hopefully remove that thorn. It allows us to alert Google of such instances by filling out 3 fields: provide the URL of the page that originally published the content; the URL where the duplicate content appears; and the search result URL that generates the problem. Google also asks you to check a box to confirm that your own site is operating under Google’s Webmaster Guidelines and that it’s not affected by any manual penalty actions.
Google doesn’t promise any immediate fixes, but it is an indication that Google acknowledges that some sites with duplicate content rank when they shouldn’t and they would like to see it.
This new tool can serve as a warning to anyone that may be utilizing duplicate content. It is not acceptable to copy and paste another site’s content on your own site. You must create original content; otherwise a competitor can now easily report you to Google.