I probably should have put this first because it can’t be stressed enough for SEO. Your site needs to provide high-quality and original content. You will read this maybe a hundred times as you research SEO. Content is king. And I firmly believe this to be true. If you are under the impression that the internet is so big that search engines can’t identify content as really unique, guess again. One afternoon spent playing with CopyScape will convince you that there is technology available today that is able to tell you if any given sentence has been repeated anywhere on the Internet.
It’s staggering, actually, when you really think about that. The volumes of data are just outrageous. But if CopyScape can do it, I’m betting that Google can do it also. And I firmly believe that your site receives a positive bump when Google determines that the content is original. Many people have asked me if using content that is repeated on other sites will penalize the site. I believe the answer is no, you will not be penalized by Google (copyright infringement is a completely different and very serious legal topic that I won’t go into today). But I also believe that you won’t get where you want to be by using content that already has high mileage. The other hot debate related to how sites using duplicate content can actually rank higher than the site where the content originated from.
Yes – This has been demonstrated empirically a bunch of times. But you don’t need to be too concerned with that for reasons we will get into later. Just keep your eye on the ball. Put in the time, energy and creativity it takes to create unique content and you will be rewarded. Plain and simple.