What Is a Canonical Tag & How Does It Improve SEO?

What Is a Canonical Tag & How Does It Improve SEO?

Due to the perceived complexity of SEO, some people shy away from it. In search engine optimization, several things can help ensure that your website is built to allow both crawlers and visitors to navigate it easily. Our goal is to show you how a canonical tag can help you rank higher in search engines. Learn What Is a Canonical Tag & How Does It Improve SEO?.

What Is a Canonical Tag & How Does It Improve SEO?
What Is a Canonical Tag & How Does It Improve SEO?

How Do Canonical Tags Work?

Compared to similar pages, search engines like Google can identify the original page using the Canonical tag. The pages on many sites have close similarities or are almost identical, and if no canonical tag is used, those pages would be flagged as duplicate content and penalized. Any page that can be considered original content and be considered the most important page should contain the tag in the head section of the HTML code.

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What are canonical tags?

Tags are added to canonical pages from non-canonical ones. Search engines are redirected in this way.

What Should The Canonical Tag Be Placed On?

In many cases, you will have more than one option for a tag, but one page will make the most sense, so that is the one you should use. There are, however, some cases in which the appropriate selection might not be clear. Choosing one does not pose a problem, as you need to pick one and go from there. SEO practices like this one help search engines determine what content is the original so that you won’t get penalized for duplicate content in searches. Furthermore, it helps visitors as they are directed to the most friendly URL and optimize the page for search engines.

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What are the benefits of using these tags?

If you select a canonical tag for one of your pages similar to one another, you will improve your search engine optimization. Search engines will identify which version is the original content by comparing them. For the 1 page that carries the tag, the search engines will count all links pointing to those other pages. In other words, traffic to the tagged content will be redirected automatically without any redirects.

Some website owners may be wondering what content would benefit from this type of tag if they do not understand technical SEO strategies. An example will be if you have a site URL:

You can find it at http://www.mysite.com/mytopic.HTML.
Mysite.com/mytopic/?cmpgn=Facebook. Both of these pages are nearly identical, and it is not necessary to use canonical tags to distinguish them. A lot of e-commerce sites have multiple pages that are very similar, perhaps advertising the same shoe in various colors or other items which have multiple options; due to the similarity between the pages, search engines may flag those as duplicates, and using this type of tag can help solve this problem.

Are these types of tags usable across multiple domains?

Sometimes a web admin may have the same content across multiple domains. In another instance, there may be agreements among websites to share content, and because of this, a canonical tag is added to the shared content so the original site can get credit for the traffic that comes from it. As a result, not only does the site using the content have access to using another person’s original content, but the original content creator also receives benefits from the use of their content elsewhere.

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