Do you ever wonder as a real estate agent professional why your website fails to rank? or why all the effort you put into promoting your real estate fails? Well I am going to suggest that it could be the plague that is eating away at your website . This plague could well end up with you running a dead website one that has been lost in the search engine results pages.
Hi I am Nicholas Marr CEO of a Global Property Marketing Compnay and I am behind several successful real estate websites all aimed at international audiences, one has been ranked in the Global Top 20 Portals in the world (www.Homesgofast.com) . We have achieved this without huge budgets but with one thought to anything we do "Content is King"
The plague that I refer to is very hard to avoid in the real estate industry. It is duplicated content!
It always surprises me to see how real estate website owners under estimate the danger that exists by promoting duplicated content. Some are blissfully unaware that the Google axe may fall on their website without warning.
A number of years I experimented with creating websites from the same content from another of my websites. The success was overnight with our main websites highly ranked alongside another websites that contained duplicated data. The high lasted for about 2 years until Google's axe fell down and penalized the websites severely. All page ranking was lost and the algorithm that I had ignored comes to pass.
So what is duplicated Content?
Duplicate content refers to substantive blocks of content within or across domains that either completely matches other content or is appreciably similar. Google says that duplicated content is where it is deliberately duplicated across domains is an attempt to manipulate search engine rankings or win more traffic. Search engines believe that practices like this result in a poor user experience as users sees substantially the same content repeated within a set of search results.
Playing with Fire!
This danger cannot be under estimated and today many portals are playing with fire by being unaware of duplicating content. Google does a good job of blocking this type of content and selecting the original source to show in the search results.
Are You Treading the Dangerous Line With Duplicated Data?
Carrying substantive blocks of content that is duplicated is an easy thing to do. Property portals by there very nature promote property details on behalf of someone else i.e. real estate agents. The agent's property listing details would probably already be indexed by Google from an agent's website. Soon as the portal promotes that listing they are instantly promoting duplicated content. Syndicated content that is displayed on multiple websites also risks being blocked and property feed data is particularly vulnerable to being blocked.
The Danger Lurks in Mergers and Acquisitions
Running two websites as I learned with the same content is clearly another way to get one of the sites dropped. This is a huge risk when for example consolidation occurs and the merger takes over a competitor website. All may seem well for a while but as the spiders get to grips with the two websites one will be dropped like a stone as soon as duplicated content is confirmed. Competitors may also report duplicated content.
Danger of Websites that Scrape Your Data
If you find that another site is duplicating your content by scraping (misappropriating and republishing) it, it's unlikely that this will negatively impact your site's ranking in Google search results pages. If you do spot a case that's particularly frustrating, you are entitled to claim ownership of the content and request removal of the other site from Google's index.
Are Google Warning Shots Being Fired?
Real estate websites with large amount of content such as MLS that have not been indexed should see this as their first warning sign that all may not be well. Its may be time to put in the remedies and stop dicing with the dangers of duplicated content.
Nicholas Marr is the CEO of Marr Internationala global property marketing company behind overseas property portal at www.Homesgofast.com and UK private sales website www.TheLittleHouseCompany.co.uk