Canonical Tag

What are Canonical Tags and why they are important

What are Canonical Tags and why they are important

Canonical tags are a snippet of HTML code used to let the search engine know which version of the URL appears in the search result.

By using canonical tag it prevents cause by duplicate content appearing on multiple URLs.

The primary purpose of the canonical tag is to tell search engines which page has the original version and which page is the main, and which are duplicates.

Code Sample

Canonical tags syntax is simple and consistent and placed with the <head> section of the post or page.

<link rel=’canonical” href=””/>

Why are canonical tags important

Websites usually contain some pages with different URLs but display the same. Google doesn’t use all the pages in search results because they all look similar.

Google doesn’t like duplicate content. It makes it harder for them to choose:

  • Which version of a page to index as Google index only one.

  • Which version of a page to rank for relevant queries.

Canonical tags solve these problems. They tell Google which version of a page they should rank and index.

If you don’t specify a canonical URL then Google has to decide which page to choose for ranking and indexing purposes.

If there is no duplicate content

If you do not publish the same pages and post multiple times then there is no duplicate content on your website. But search engines do not crawl web pages, it crawl URLs.

For example, product pages are displayed with various URLs that are often used.

In the above example, the product page is displayed in the main category /clothes/, but also displayed with color and size parameters.

Therefore it can be displayed with three different URLs in search results.

This is where the canonical tags are important.

They will indicate to search engines that index the main URL category /clothes/ and use it as a search result and ignore the rest of the URLs.

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