Minimizing duplicate content in a serendipity blog

Serving the same textual content on different website pages
can be very bad from a search engine optimization point of view. This is because it makes it difficult to rank well in the search engine results pages for that content
and dilutes the benefits of incoming links to it.

Most Content Management Systems (CMS) and blogging systems in particular have a tendency to display the same content in multiple places. Unfortunately serendipity(s9y) is no exception. In this post I look at how to minimize duplicate content in an s9y powered blog.

In the case of s9y, a single blog post can show up on a number of pages like:

  1. Frontpage of the blog
  2. Archive pages
  3. Category pages

So as you can see by default a single blog post is duplicated on at least three different web pages in s9y! And if you install the free tag plugin your content can show up on the tag pages as well!

Minimizing duplicate content

To prevent the same content being duplicated in multiple pages you can do the following:

Make use of the extended entry body: This is by far the single biggest step you can take. By placing the majority of your blog post’s content in the extended entry body you minimize the amount of duplicate content that is scattered across your site. When you do this only the teaser text shows up on the front page, archives pages and categories page. The full article text only shows up on the single blog post page.

admin suite> new entry

You may have to click on the plus icon next to extended entry on the new entry page in the admin suite to make the extended entry box appear.

Install the XML sitemap plugin: The sitemap plugin available on spartacus generates an index of your sites webpages. This index summarizes the address of your site’s webpages for search engine bots to refer to. It tells the search engine bots which pages you want indexed and allows you to give hints to the search engines about which pages you give priority to. You should install this plugin and configure it to only include some pages of the site.

You can configure this plugin in the admin suite> configure plugins>event plugins> xml sitemap.

XML plugin sitemap configuration

Hide the archive plugin: One of the defining characteristics of a blog  is the blog monthly archives. Unfortunately blog archives are a major source of duplicate content and serve to inflate the number of pages on your website without adding any additional content to your site. Also one really has to wonder how useful the archives are to human visitors to your site? Does anyone dig through archives when categories are so much more useful?

To hide the archives plugin go to the admin suite> configure plugins and under sidebar plugins drag the archive plugin to the hidden column. Finally click on the save button. 

These simple steps will help reduce the amount of duplicate content on your s9y powered blog. But there are more advanced measures that i will cover in a future post.

2 thoughts on “Minimizing duplicate content in a serendipity blog

  1. I used to publish my articles, but now I wander should I stop doing this, because the risk of duplicate content penalty. Should I stop publish my articles on article directories?

  2. Don’t publish the exact same article on your site [i]and[/i] on article directories. Rewrite it before submitting it to article directories.

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