Caution: Product Descriptions from Manufacturers Are All Triplicate Content!

Caution: Product Descriptions from Manufacturers Are All Triplicate Content!

May 11th, 2011

As the web becomes more and more competitive for business owners operating online, search engine optimization, social marketing and solid customer service are just a few things many business owners are focusing on in effort to cut through the competition and connect with the community of consumers.

Duplicate Content

One thing you can’t miss when researching search engines optimization is “duplicate content” — a term that defines content that has been published in more than one place online. While it may seem like a smart strategy for extending your reach and getting your articles the most exposure possible, search engines frown upon this activity and even penalize publishers that take part in it.

The reason publishers are penalized for duplicate content is because it adds no additional value to the overall web, so search engines try to keep it out of their index as much as possible.

Triplicate Content

Though duplicate content covers the idea of publishing a piece of content, whether an article, review, or product description, triplicate content is just an expression for any piece of content that’s been published in literally hundreds of places online.

Product descriptions are some of the most popular piece of triplicate content, because most retailers online, bloggers, review websites, and other content publishers often fall into republishing what the manufacturer provided about the product instead of re-writing the content.

In turn, this ruins your chance of ranking for anything related to that piece of content — title, description, meta … it all gets thrown out by search engines once their algorithm concludes your content isn’t original.

Original Content – Why You Should Write Your Own Product Descriptions

Original content is perhaps one of the most important things a website can have — search engines love it because it adds value to the web, and so they want to feature it prominently in their index for their users.

The key to stepping up to the next level and cutting through the competition in your niche is to take the product descriptions from the manufacturers and rewrite them completely. In fact, you should probably aim to write more than what the manufacture provided, because the more original content you have the better. By presenting a few paragraphs for a product page, as opposed to the few sentences the manufacturer provided, search engines will see that you’re providing more value than your competition, and thus your position in their index will move upward.

In addition, this type of content creation will attract more organic links from other publishers because they’ll want to share your content with their friends or following rather than the majority of other sources, which make use of the triplicate content from manufacturers.

Bottom line: the only thing you should be doing with the manufacturer’s product description is using it to create your own original content. That way you have the specifications and features the product offers, yet you also have unique content published exclusively on your website.

image credit: iboy_daniel



14 Comments

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    Comment by Jenifer Betance — June 28, 2012 @ 12:48 am

  12. How interesting that I came across this just as I was beginning to write descriptions for my newest products! It is a great incentive to keep it original.
    I wrote my own description for my products that are currently listed as well. One thing that I am curious about, is this. What if someone copies MY descriptions? Would Google notice and be able to tell which was the original?

    Comment by Melissa — September 27, 2012 @ 1:46 pm

  13. Hi Melissa,

    Great question! One of things that you need to do is to always stay on top of where your site ranks in the search engines. Keep track of where your site falls in the search engines for your keywords and product types. If you notice that your site is losing rank and is falling in the search engines, then that means that it is time to switch things up and re-write descriptions, update your meta keywords, titles and descriptions in your source to keep things fresh.

    You generally don’t have to worry about someone taking your personal descriptions. As most everyone else will just be copying what the manufacturer says about the product.

    Keep up the good work!

    Comment by Tisha Hedges — September 28, 2012 @ 3:18 pm

  14. Keep up the good work! I read some other posts here and you have fantastic information!

    Comment by judi — November 29, 2016 @ 12:28 am

14 Responses to Caution: Product Descriptions from Manufacturers Are All Triplicate Content!

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