Keywords are king when it comes to search engine optimization. Therefore, SEO
has become a multi-million dollar business with a host of experts offering advice on how best to move up the search engine results page (SERP) and claim the coveted number one spot.
Something that doesn't make the SEO rounds quite so often is keyword cannibalization. While this unpleasant-sounding issue won't sink your website, it can cause your pages and posts to rank lower than they should and — if left unchecked — could harm the overall reputation of your site.
What is Keyword Cannibalization in SEO?
Keyword cannibalization occurs when two or more pages on your website end up competing for the same keyword.
The problem? By using the same keyword for each page, you're essentially stealing search engine rankings from yourself.
Here's why: From the perspective of search engines each of these pages is its own separate entity with its own authority and page ranking, meaning your pages are fighting for SEO attention.
How to Detect Keyword Cannibalization
The simplest way to detect keyword cannibalization is to :
create a spreadsheet containing the keyword(s) for any content you create.
Before making a new post, check your spreadsheet and see if you've already used the same keyword.
A quick online search of your most relevant keywords. If you see multiple pages from your site listed close to one another in SERPs for the same keyword, you have a cannibalization problem.
Keyword cannibalization checker tools can help ensure you're not missing potential overlap.
How to Eliminate Keyword Cannibalization
So what happens if you discover keyword cannibalization on your site?
Look at the content on each page. Wherever possible, combine the information from both pages into a single post to boost search rankings and increase authority.
Integrate any useful data from older posts into newer content and then delete the original, in turn allowing search engines to rank up your most relevant post.
Keyword Cannibalization Checker Tools
1.SEMrush Position Tracking Tool
2.Google Search Console
3.SEOScout Cannibalization Checker
4. Moz Keyword Explorer
Staying Aware of Keyword Cannibalization
Solve for keyword cannibalization by finding duplicate keyword use, then combining or deleting content as needed to ensure your most relevant content earns the highest SERP placement with popular search engines.
For site owners and admins, cannibal keyword content is problematic — multiple URLs ranking for the same keyword can negatively impact page authority, frustrate potential customers, and reduce SERPs.