What is canonical tag
A canonical tag is an HTML tag used to tell search engines which version of a web page is the preferred or primary version. It is also known as a rel=canonical tag.
When multiple URLs have similar content, search engines may have difficulty deciding which page to rank for a particular keyword or phrase. This can lead to duplicate content issues, which can harm the overall SEO performance of a website.
By using a canonical tag, website owners can indicate which URL should be considered the main page for a particular piece of content. This helps search engines understand the relationship between similar pages and avoids duplicate content penalties.
In short, a canonical tag is a tool that can be used to consolidate the ranking signals for similar pages and help search engines better understand the content and intent of a website.
Example of Canonical tag
Why does canonicalization matter?
Canonicalization is important for SEO (search engine optimization) because it helps search engines understand the relationships between different versions of the same content, and avoid indexing duplicate or near-duplicate content. When multiple URLs have the same or very similar content, search engines may have difficulty determining which version is the most relevant and authoritative, and this can dilute the ranking signals for the page.
Here are a few reasons why canonicalization matters:
- Avoid duplicate content penalties: If search engines detect multiple versions of the same content, they may view it as an attempt to manipulate rankings and issue a duplicate content penalty, which can result in lower search rankings and reduced visibility.
- Consolidate ranking signals: When there are multiple versions of the same content, the ranking signals can be diluted across all the versions. By canonicalizing to a single preferred URL, you can consolidate those ranking signals, and improve the visibility and ranking potential of the page.
- Improve user experience: By providing a single preferred version of the page, you can ensure that users are directed to the most appropriate and relevant version of the content, which can improve their experience on your website.
In summary, canonicalization is important for SEO and website management because it helps ensure that search engines are able to index and rank your content correctly, while providing a better user experience for your visitors.
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