Keyword Cannibalisation

Keyword cannibalisation refers to the instance where pages in the same site are competing with each other within the search engine results page (SERP).

This can occur for a few reasons, but most often is caused by the intent of the pages being the same. Google crawls the pages, gets confused with both having the same purpose and keyword focus, and chooses to leave them both in the dust. If Google can't tell which one is most relevant for it's associated queries, they will end up in the 'too hard basket'.

Some other causes of keyword cannibalisation include:

  • Publishing pieces of content overtime that are too similar
  • Leading to the same product category from multiple different paths
  • Creating a new page without a redirect from the old one
  • Use the same keywords to optimise pages that are similar to one another
  • Not optimising or adding fresh content to subcategory pages

Avoiding cannibalisation often begins from the ground up, preventing blog topics from being too similar and category pages from essentially 'selling the same thing'

Extra tip: Your branded keywords will very rarely, almost never, become cannibalised - so don't stress about using them on multiple pages across your site.

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