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E-Marketing Performance Blog

Overcoming the Duplicate Product Information Dilemma

preventing duplicate product titles

Let’s face it. If your website consists of products that you buy from other manufacturers, you have a uniqueness problem. Not-so-ironically, you’re not alone. The hundreds of other sites selling the same products as you have the same problem as well. You’re all publishing duplicate content.

The Duplicate Product Problem

Ecommerce websites tend to populate their databases with data dumps provided by the manufacturers. These data dumps will usually include the product titles, descriptions, and specifications, among other things. Every site publishing this data is publishing duplicate content.

One of the jobs of search engine algorithms is to determine which pages should rank over others. The uniqueness of the text can be a factor, especially when it comes to the nuances of long-tail searching. But when hundreds of product pages all share the same title and description, the search engines lose a key relevance indicator.

Which means you’re losing a key relevance indicator that could otherwise help you rank better than a competitor.

The Duplicate Product Solution

While uniqueness may not be an actual search engine algorithm signal, it is still important. Being unique means providing content that isn’t available on other websites. So how do you be unique when you’re using a data dump of products?

You might not like the answer, but here it is: Write unique titles and descriptions for each and every product.

Yeah, it takes a lot of time, but this is your opportunity to stand out from every other site selling the exact same thing. If you can’t get to every product and write unique content for it immediately, don’t worry. This is something you can do in stages. But make a plan to tackle every product within a set period of time. Do a handful a day and just keep making progress.

It is important that you find your voice and put that into everything you sell. Be fun, be creative, and by all means, add value!

Alternate Solution: If you can’t write your own unique content for your products, your next best option is user-generated content. Get your customers to create content on these pages in the form of product reviews, questions and so on. But I’ll address that more in a later post.

Checklist for Writing Unique Product Content

  • Set a date to have all your products updated.

  • Figure out how many products you have, divide by the number of days until your due date, and tackle that many products every day.

  • Start with product titles. Once all product titles have been updated, move on to the descriptions.

  • Use your voice consistently throughout.

Stoney G deGeyter

Stoney deGeyter is the author of The Best Damn Web Marketing Checklist, Period!. He is the founder and CEO of Pole Position Marketing, a web presence optimization firm whose pit crew has been velocitizing websites since 1998. In his free time Stoney gets involved in community services and ministries with his “bride enjoy” and his children. Read Stoney’s full bio.

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