Keyword cannibalization refers to a situation where multiple pages on a website target the same keyword or a set of very similar keywords. This can happen unintentionally, resulting in confusion for search engines about which page to rank for a particular keyword. It can negatively impact the overall search visibility and rankings of a website.
To fix keyword cannibalization, follow these steps:
- Identify the affected pages: Conduct a thorough audit of your website to identify pages that are targeting the same or similar keywords.
- Analyze content and intent: Review the content on these pages to determine if they are substantially different or if there is overlapping content.
- Consolidate or differentiate content: Depending on the analysis, you can choose to merge the content from multiple pages into a single, comprehensive page that provides the best user experience and covers the intended topic extensively. Alternatively, you can rewrite and differentiate the content on two or more pages to eliminate overlap.
- Optimize on-page elements: Ensure that the target keyword(s) appear appropriately in the page title, URL, headings, and throughout the content.
- Update internal linking: Review and modify internal links within your website to point to the consolidated or differentiated page, redirecting any external links that point to the cannibalized pages.
- Improve metadata and tags: Optimize the meta titles and descriptions of the consolidated or differentiated page to accurately describe the content and attract clicks from search results.
- Implement canonical tags: Use canonical tags to indicate the preferred version of the page that should be indexed by search engines, directing any link equity or authority to the primary page.
- Monitor and measure: Keep track of the changes made and regularly check rankings and organic traffic to observe any positive impacts. Adjust your strategy if necessary.
By fixing keyword cannibalization, you provide search engines with clear signals about the page's intended purpose, improve the overall user experience, and increase the chances of ranking higher for relevant keywords.