Aqueous Digital

Does Google penalise plagiarised content?

With so many websites online and more people planning on creating one, it can be a challenge to ensure the content on yours is original.

In fact, many websites have plagiarised content, which has prompted people to ask the question: ‘Does google penalise duplicate content?’

What is duplicate content according to Google?

According to Google, duplicate content is when content on one website can also be found on other web pages or on a different website.

Google will classify content as duplicate if it is identical, or incredibly similar, to content published elsewhere.

This can be anything, from product descriptions to titles, or even subtitles.

Does Google still penalise duplicate content?

If you google duplicate content, you may see some mixed messages when it comes to information on penalties.

While many people still believe that the Google duplicate content penalty is a myth, there are competing beliefs that you can be penalised for it.

What we do know is that Google rewards content that is useful to the reader with a higher position in Search Engine Results Pages (or SERPs). For that reason, it always recommends creating content with users in mind, and not search engines.

Not only can duplicate content hurt your rankings, but if you’re found to be intentionally using copyrighted content from elsewhere then Google may penalise you by delisting the offending page or, worse, the entire website.

Both duplicate content and thin content – that is content that lacks authenticity, depth, or structure – provide little or no added value for readers.

With that in mind, it is best to focus on making your content as original and worthy as possible.

Thankfully, there are tools you can use to check for duplicate content, which saves you from having to do it manually. Copyscape is an online tool that enables users to automatically scan the web for plagiarised content and to check the originality of their own content.

To ensure you won’t be penalised, it is a good idea to make sure you do not copy and paste content and consider using 301 redirects to send users to the original page.

You should aspire to be creative with the type of content you produce to make your website unique in comparison to others.

There is another consequence for duplicate content on your website;  , as well as ranked. Indexing is when content is stored and sorted during the crawling process. If content is unable to be indexed, it cannot be displayed on the results page for relevant queries.

This is because Google does not like displaying similar content, which could ultimately have a negative impact on the visibility of your site.

Given Google’s experts have encouraged the notion of unique content on a website, it is more important than ever to avoid duplicate content.

If you are seeking to enhance your SEO content strategy and improve your website’s ranking in search, why not contact us at Aqueous Digital for an initial audit?

We can then use our expertise to recommend a tailored content strategy that delivers the results you crave.

If you need an agency that can be your guiding hand to great SEO in Sheffield, Liverpool, Manchester, and all across the UK, contact Aqueous Digital. To get in touch with our team you can either give us a call on 0800 285 1424, or alternatively email us at

More Articles

Leeds city skyline
Claire McKernan

Top 10 facts about Sheffield

Sheffield is renowned for its lively atmosphere and fascinating heritage. However, there are many things people don’t know about this wonderful city in the county

Read More »