A canonical URL tells a search engine that a certain URLs are actually same and one. Sometimes products and contents can be accessible under multiple websites and numerous URLs. A canonical URL can remain without harming the rankings.
Canonical Link Element
Often called as the canonical link, the rel=canonical element helps to prevent duplicate issues of contents. Indicating by the preferred or canonical version of a content which also improves a website’s SEO. The idea behind this is very simple, if there are duplicate versions of same content, you can take one preferred version and indicate the search engine at that. Duplicate content problem solves in this case and search engines know which content to show.Read more here, http://www.seoreviewtools.com/canonical-url-location-checker/.
The benefit of rel=canonical
A proper canonical URL improves the SEO of the website. The search engine will know which is preferred if you use a canonical URL. It can count all of the links to different versions and link to the single one which is preferred. Generally, it’s similar to a 301 redirect without redirecting actually.
How to set up a Canonical URL?
Let’s say that you have two versions of the same page with exactly same content. The difference is that they’re in separate sections and the color of the background differs. Here is the confusion of which version to show?
For an example, the two URLs are –
Now follow these two steps below –
- You need to pick one of those two versions which you think is important and you want to show to the viewer. If you can’t decide, you can pick the link which has more visitors.
- Add the rel=canonical link from the chosen URL to make it a canonical one. If you pick the first URL which is also shortest as the canonical URL, the other one will get linked to it. Here is what you need to write –
<link rel=”canonical” href=”http://example.in/plugin”>
It only incorporates the pages into one and ‘soft redirect’ without actually redirecting. Read More Here,
Canonical URL faults
There are several cases which show that the implementation of rel=canonical is wrong and leads to huge issues. There are things which you shouldn’t do to avoid the circumstances. Here are 3 important things below –
- Avoid a paginated archive a canonical URL. The canonical of page 2 should indicate and open the page 2 or search engines can’t index the links on rooted archive pages.
- Make it a 100% specific because you have a preference which you need to show it.
- Your webpage must be aware of its own URL; in this case, build the canonical on the request URL. If you don’t then it can disturb the rankings and search engines will get confused while showing deeper archive contents.