Why is Keyword Cannibalization Bad for SEO? And How to Resolve it

If you run a blog or own a website, you should definitely know what Keyword Cannibalization is. Keyword Cannibalization plays a dangerous role in your blog or website SEO. Now, Keyword Cannibalization means or refers to a situation where you have various blog posts or articles on your site that are likely to rank for the same search query on search engines. This could be either because both articles cover the same topic or you’ve optimized them for the same key phrase.

You should know, if you optimize posts or articles for similar search queries, they are only killing each other’s chances to rank. First of all, Google shows 1 or 2 results from the same domain in search results, However, if you have a high authority domain, Google might show 3. What you should focus on is creating a single quality content to rank for rather than have various articles on the same topic.

Keyword Cannibalization

Keyword Cannibalization

If you optimize articles on your site for similar terms, your ranking is likely to suffer from keyword cannibalization. We’ve discussed what keyword cannibalism is earlier in this article. The outcome of Keyword Cannibalization is that you will be devouring your own chances to rank in Google. You shouldn’t do this especially when your site is growing. The best-case scenario is that your articles would start competing with itself. In a nutshell, Keyword Cannibalization or Keyword Cannibalism can be detrimental to SEO.

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Why is Keyword Cannibalization Bad for SEO?

As discussed earlier in this article, using Keyword Cannibalism is bad for SEO and you are going to find out why in this section of this article. To make it easier for you to understand, let’s take an instance. Let’s say you have two posts on exactly the same topic on your site. According to YOAST, Google would not know or can’t distinguish which article should rank highest for a certain query. In addition to that, Important factors like CTR (Click Through Rate) and backlink will get diluted over several posts instead of one. As a result of this, both articles are probably going to rank lower.

If you understand fully, you would also know that Keyword Cannibalism could also occur if you optimize posts for focus keywords that are almost the same. Let’s take again, for instance, you’ve written an article “How to Stream Movies Online” and you are writing another article again titled “Stream HD Moves Online”, this can be called Keyword Cannibalism. Though both articles are optimized for different keywords and have a different write-up, they are still very similar. As stated earlier, Google would find it difficult to figure out of both articles which is important and add it to a specific search query.

How to Recognize Keyword Cannibalism

In this section of this article, you are going to find out how to recognize keyword cannibalism. Checking keyword cannibalism is pretty simple and it can be done in less than five minutes.

  • Get any internet-connected device and turn it on.
  • Open any web browser on the device.
  • Tap on the search bar and search for any specific keyword you suspect may have multiple results.
  • If you have a hard time finding your rankings probably because you are not on Google’s first page of the search result, using the search term (“site:domain.com” “keyword”) will give you an easy answer. Be sure to remove the brackets, replace the term domain.com with your site domain, and the term keyword with the keyword you suspect of cannibalism.

There you have it. You can now easily discover or recognize keyword cannibalism on your site.

How to Solve/Resolve Keywords Cannibalization

There are several steps to resolve keyword cannibalization. Below, we will be discussing a few of the steps.

  • Audit your content. This should help you decide which content or article to keep.
  • Analyze your content performance. This should also help you decide which content or article to keep.
  • Finally, decide the content or article you wish to keep.
  • Now, either merge both articles or delete and redirect the content or article you do not want to keep.
  • Improve internal linking. By doing this, you can help Google figure out which article is most important to you. You should link from posts that are less important to posts that are most important to you.

Above are steps you can take to resolve keywords cannibalization.

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