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Duplicate Meta Tags in Google

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  • Duplicate Meta Tags in Google

    I am a novice but, trying hard every day to learn.

    I read the webmaster guidelines article in Google webmaster tools a couple weeks ago and noticed they suggested creting URLS which are keyword rich. I decide to update my urls using the custom url option field. After completing the task I deleted my old sitemap, regenerated it, and resubmit. A couple days later Google updated the "HTML suggestions" in webmaster tools. Now it is saying I have duplicate Meta descriptions and Duplicate Meta Titles on a number of pages.

    So I deleted all of the Custom URLS re wrote all of my meta descriptions and titles, deleted and resubmit my site map. The "HTML suggestions" were updated this morning and still it is showing duplicates.

    I have submit a ticket but, this problem has been on going for 2 weeks now. I have exhausted what I know how to do. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    The reason I posted in Optomizing for serch engines is because these duplicates have definitely hurt my rankings.

    I will put an example of one of the duplicates. I hope it's ok, Im not trying to spam.


  • #2
    By default you already have keyword rich urls (3dcart uses the product name as URL) but yeah you can go further with custom file names. This however has nothing to do with meta tags and titles thats something else....

    For each product you can have a custom title and meta tags there is a tab on the product editor to edit the title and meta tags ( I suggest you use the meta tag wizard). Note that by default the software gives a title to the page but from the link you posted it appears you have 2 items named the same so that's probably why they have the same title, you can go to one of them and change it to something else...
    Gonzalo Gil
    3dCart Support
    800-828-6650 x111


    • #3
      Well, I wish it were that easy.

      When Google crawled and indexed my site after creating custom urls it matched these new urls against the meta information in the old urls and marked them duplicates since none of the meta information changed, only the url.

      So this old url:

      Has exactly the same information as:

      The custom URL:

      Boom...Duplicate Meta info.

      So if custom URLS are used all of the meta information must be changed as well to make it unique. Otherwise the Google cache counts it as duplicate content because the only thing that changed is the URL name.

      So here is what I did. Deleted all of the custom urls, re wrote all of the meta info and meta titles. Deleted the old sitemap. regenerated and resubmit. Pages were crawled. Google webmaster tools "HTML" suggestions was updated and problem still persists.

      My site has only 70 some pages but Google has over 300 indexed.


      • #4
        ok, so now here is what's going to happen:

        Google will come back to your urls (during the next crawl), some of them will not work since you deleted the custom file names. They will be removed.

        The other URLs will work and will stay indexed.

        The bad part is that this doesn't happen immediately, it will take time.

        There is a way to tell Google to delete all your listings, but it may have permanent effects so i would suggest not doing that.

        Google is pretty smart, and its aware that people add and delete files from their website. You are not going to be penalized for a file that no longer exists, but it will continue to show on that report until the robot comes back and the file no longer works.
        Gonzalo Gil
        3dCart Support
        800-828-6650 x111


        • #5
          Thanks for the reponse Gil. But, this has been an ongoing problem for at least two weeks. Many of the duplicate links showing in Google Webmaster tools are dead links they show up one day, go away the next day, come back again etc.... Like I said, the pages have been recrawled since I made the changes and Google is still showing duplicates. The HTML suggestions in Google were updated today and the problem still persists. Since these duplicates started showing up I have definitely seen a drop in rankings. It may be a coincidence due to other ranking factors but, I don't think so.

          I'm not trying to be a bug or acting like I know better than you because I don't. I'm just trying to explain what my experience has been with using the custom file names and it hasn't been good. Alot of it could be chalked up to inexperiece, but there are other threads here with people who have the same issue.

          I can offer some advice. If you're a rookie like me, don't mess with the custom URLS. It came back to bite me and I don't want others to experience the same issue.

          Thanks for the help Gil. I do appreciate it.