What is Keyword Cannibalization and how to fix seo

What is Keyword Cannibalization? How To Identify and Fix SEO

Many SEO professionals trick search engines with more pages using similar keywords. Considering, higher ranking for that keyword on organic search results. After all, more pages your niche, more likely the search engine will pick up a keyword, and elevate page to rank.

If you’re following this practice, you should stop acting.

Targeting a specific niche across website pages have a side effect on your SEO ranking. Unfortunately, you’ll end-up harming content than good to your SEO.

But, why?

If you have multiple pages ranking in SERPs with a similar keyword, you’re actually competing against yourself. Consequently, each page has a decreasing authority, lower CTR, and lower conversion rates than a consolidated page shall have.

This phenomenon is known as Keyword Cannibalization.

What is Keyword Cannibalization?

Cannibalization in marketing strategy refers to as a reduction in sales volume, market share, or sales revenue of a new product by the same producer. The issue is of utmost importance in marketing strategy when a company intends to implement the brand extension.

Keyword Cannibalization is a situation when a website has more than one page with a similarly focused keyword. You’ll be devouring your own chances to rank in search engines. Simply, it forces Google to determine which page is most relevant to show in a search result for the same query. It will pick one of them which can be ideally the page you do not want to appear first.

How To Identify?

Once you recognize the keyword cannibalization problem, fixing it can be easy. Recognizing the problem is easy with creating a keyword matrix. Begin with creating a list of important URLs and their associated keywords.

For example, your site sells women clothing online:

Once you’ve listed down the URLs and related keywords, run down the list to suspect identical keywords.  If you identify any, especially, across core pages you’re probably experiencing keyword cannibalization.

Similarly, keyword cannibalization can also occur if page meta title and description are targeting an identical niche keyword. However, the best way to identify keyword cannibalization is to use SEO tools like SEMRush.

Consequences of Keyword Cannibalization to SEO

One of the reasons we perform SEO to guide our website for better performance.  When we do now work in the truce of search engines to help with making their job easy, the outcome may not be what we want. Following is a list of consequences you may experience:

– Duplicate Content

While targeting multiple pages you are putting your site with risk to duplicate content, poor quality content, and replicates. Thus, this lowers your chances to target similar traffic.

– Conversion Rate

If one page is ranking better than others then its less relevant to rank low-quality pages. Why waste time on different pages with the same niche is one of these ranking better? This will potentially result in losing leads when they land on cannibalizing pages with less relevancy. You need to focus on efforts for one page instead of spending energy on lower-converting pages.

– Diminishing Authority

Cannibalization results in valuable organic traffic to the quality page. While any lower quality page ranking higher will split your CTR. Consequently, you have turned yourself into your own competitor.

– Unwanted Ranking

One of the biggest challenge SEO professional experience about cannibalization is when two pages are ranking the same on relevant keywords, the lower-performing page is ranking higher than the one that does not perform. Indeed, you need to take immediate action to alleviate the issue.

How To Avoid Keyword Cannibalization?

It is impossible not to miss out writing in a similar objective when working on a project for a prolonged duration. Although, in some stances, you’ve not planned out a direction of your content strategy. Here are three things to avoid when keyword cannibalization:

– Specific Keyword Focus Page

Target specific set of keywords on different pages. Set a combination of unique key phrases for each web page, write keyword title tag, heading, ALT text, relevant topic content, and body text. The easy way to bust the confusion is, note down every page of the website on a spreadsheet. In adjacent columns add focus keyword against each page. This will help you scrutinize keyword columns on the spreadsheet. Thus, avoiding the writer from the risk of creating duplicate keywords pages.

– Faciliatet Variations on Authroity Page

Ensure to distinguish keyword variations for every page. These pages must link to the actual page for that keyword. Indeed this will boost Google to find page authority for that keyword. Thus, integrating pages with targeted keywords within content offers a greater impact on ranking. Because it’s a helps search engines to read keyword optimize a page.

– Optimize High Standard Meta Description

Create unique meta titles and description for every page. Although the homepage and subpages can have broad competitive keywords. While inner pages like blogs can comprise of long tail phrases. Thus, this will help search engines to identify page relevancy and potential to rank higher.

How To Fix Keyword Cannibalization

How to resolve keyword cannibalization directly depends on its root cause. The solution is simple, but harsh cases you may need to break out the 301 or change landing pages. Let’s discuss the effective measure:

– Re-structuring your website

Firstly, the simple solution contest most authoritative page into a landing page that links to other targeted keywords. If we return to the above men fashion example, you can make ‘menfashion’ your canonical source page an link all of the specific variations to it.

-Deoptimize content

Alternately, you can use this option when you have page ranking for several keywords, thereby, receiving a lot of organic traffic. You cannot either delete or redirect as the page is still valuable. The only alternative option is to the de-optimize page. Learn how to de-optimize page:

  • Identify the content by eliminating any reference to an undesirable keyword.
  • Change internal links pointing towards the undesirable page, especially keyword rich anchor.
  • Consolidated the content of both the pages. This activity will give the chance

-Create a landing page

You might lack a landing page that consolidates all your site offering at one place. Creating a unique landing page will serve as an authoritative page, linking to all your variations.

-Revise Keywords

If you are targeting one keyword on multiple pages, thereby, your site is suffering from a poorly planned keyword strategy. Thus, you need to identify new keywords like long-phrase


Keyword cannibalization is more prevalent nowadays. Typically, webmasters are victims of keyword cannibalization. Thus, who can carefully recognize the significance of SEO for their business? However, while they intend to optimize website while do not understand how the Google search engine algorithm.

Content markets must define the content goal before sitting down to create. If the content purpose is meant to generate more traffic and awareness, or intent to create sales? Remember, SEO requires dedication and time. Afterwards, the benefits will be tremendous. If you want your site to rank high on SERP, you need to be consistent.

If you’re running a website for an extended period of time, you may have an assortment of content. By now, you may find it difficult to solve any keyword cannibalization complications. The best solution is prevention. A perfect approach is to conduct a Google search example site:www.siteurl.com “keyword” before you create a new page or blog. This way you will find archives of keywords you want to avoid creating multiple pages.

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