Is Duplicate Content a Negative Factor?

For this test, we check if duplicate content such as those coming from a program such as IFTT, JetPack, Syndwire, or Onlywire can cause a drop in rankings. 

We had a lot of people ask about IFTTT and other content syndication programs. It is the “idea” of content that you have placed on your site and then syndicate out, and what results do you really get from those?

In this first test, we will be posting the content to Social Media sites for distribution. Down the road we will look at posting to Web 2.0s. The question being, if you have this nice article written, when you syndicate it, 

  • Are the links helpful? 
  • Are the links harmful?
  • Do the links have no impact?

For the first test, we are looking into posting content on your site and then posting a blurb and a backlink to social media – in this case, Facebook and Twitter. 

In order to simulate things so that they would be as real as possible, we created two new social media accounts for Laura’s Dog Walking Service, one in Facebook and the other in Twitter. We then created the ground work for a larger field test. We created 5 identical pages and indexed them. We chose the page in the #2 spot to receive the links.

We then posted simulated blurbs in Facebook and Twitter. The concept is when systems post things like ‘hey check out the great article that I just posted to my site about (insert keyword phrase).


The initial results are in and so far, there is no impact (current rankings showing no movement in the folder). The two social media links have neither been harmful or noticeably beneficial. 

This is a long term test and we will be following up on this one regularly. There is a lot going on in programs such as IFTTT and as we watch these initial social media posts, we’ll move forward with posts that go on Web 2.0 properties.

Another very important consideration is that even if not overtly beneficial, these types of links can provide ‘cover’ for other things that you are doing. What we want to nail down, for sure, is that these links won’t be harmful to your site.

Clint’s Feedback

In this video, Clint talks about his feedback on this test. He also talks about his experience with content syndication and the content he uses.

This is test number 9 – duplicate content.

I guess if you’ve been around a while you’ve actually heard of the I.F.T.T.T. syndication method. You can use it with IFTTT, Jetpack, Syndwire, Onlywire, all those other syndication tools that are out there right now. 

Those tools are actually designed to make promoting your websites a whole lot easier. Essentially how it works is when you publish a post, your RSS feed is updated. IFTTT takes the information that’s in your RSS feed, and then re-publishes it wherever. 

The standard setup is actually it republishes it to a web 2.0 like a Blogspot or, etc. But they can also publish to your Facebook account or your Twitter or send an image and publish to your Pinterest account, depending on the tools you’re using. And they’re really useful to keep engaged with your social media users or followers, while reducing the amount of work that it takes to do it.

My preferred tool is called Snap, and you get a Snap pro version and you can plug it into tons of accounts and every time you publish in WordPress, it pushes those out for you. 

We wanted to test that and see if it was actually helping in regards to rank. And more specifically, as the title is, we wanted to see if I’m publishing links, multiple links on multiple platforms – in this case, Facebook and Twitter, and I published the exact same thing on both, is that going to hurt my page because of duplicate content?

Now in the case of Facebook and Twitter, you’re republishing an excerpt, brief one sentence summary of what the page is about. But if you’re doing this to a web 2.0, you might actually be publishing entire piece of your content. 

But in the case of the excerpt that goes to Facebook and Twitter, and just because it’s the same one, and just because it’s a link, it actually had no impact on rankings, either way. 

There can be a lot of things that do that that. Since we’ve done this test, Twitter has even changed the way they work and we’ve figured stuff out that they were doing in regards to publishing content in front of a bunch of people. 

For example, Twitter, suppressed accounts, you were in the Twitter sandbox, as it were. 

Facebook wasn’t always crawling groups, for example, and if you had IFTTT set up to your groups, it wasn’t crawling it and it wasn’t indexing who knows, versus pages and posts in page and profiles. 

So knowing all that stuff, this is definitely something that could be rechecked just to verify. From my own experience, I know that it’s not hurting me by republishing the excerpts and the same thing across Facebook, Twitter, and all that stuff. 

I’m essentially just creating a brand new link, an old page, or old Twitter accounts. And I’m trying to suck up a little bit as much as I can. But at the end of the day, it’s not hurting. Probably not increasing your ranking all that much, if at all, unless you’re getting traffic from those. But at the end of the day, they’re not hurting you. And that’s what this test is telling us. I think you are good to go and if you are using that part of the IFTTT syndication or just syndicating with any tool, Syndwire, Onlywire – is Onlywire even around, or like I do, Snap Pro, just know that you are good and you can continue on.

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