You want to know what's annoying to the average Internet user? Typing something into Google, Yahoo, or MSN and getting a whole slew of entries to check -- and then realizing that half of them are the exact same article, posted in dozens of different venues. On Usenet newsgroups, it's called cross-posting, and people hate it. On the Web at large, it's even more damaging to the user, because instantly their favorite research resource becomes half as useful as it might have been. Many netizens view it as somewhat akin to spamming, and it surely isn't going to persuade them to spend money at your site. Recently, search engines have come to recognize the effects of duplicate content on the Web, and -- with Google in the lead -- have made serious efforts to crack down on it and clean up their search returns.
Unique Content is the Key
If a search engine like Google finds too many search results to be nearly identical, it's going to stop showing a large percentage of them. While this may make the searchers happy, it cuts down radically on your marketing exposure. The solution is simple enough: instead of reusing the same content in your articles, post different articles to different directories. Narrow the focus on your subject, or change your slant. If you're selling aromatherapy products, don't use the same language in each one: post one about aromatherapy candles, another about aromatherapy books, and another about aromatherapy as a lifestyle. Whether you write the articles yourself or purchase them from a provider, they need to be fresh and original to have maximum impact -- not just to your readers, but also to your bottom line.
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