Content syndication is not duplicate content: 5 popular blogs that use content syndication
It is a known fact that Google keeps updating their algorithm and marketers have to keep themselves updated.
It is also a known fact that Google penalizes duplicate content or low-quality content.
This led to a myth around content syndication as a marketing strategy.
For those of you who are not aware of this, content syndication is a process of republishing content on a third party website (like Buffer, The Huffington Post etc).
Content Syndication does not refer to copying content that is not yours. That would be plagiarism or stealing. Meaning, if you want to adopt content syndication, you need to original content in the first place.
There is a bit of controversy, as mentioned above, but there should not be any. Google, in its policy, clearly states that it does not mind syndicating your old content.
In this post, we will look at some popular blogs that use content syndication to its full potential.
Buffer cannot be ignored when we talk about content syndication. They have (quite!) literally built a million dollar business using content marketing, especially content syndication.
Leo Widrich, the founder of Buffer, spent tonnes of time initially in guest posting. He wrote approximately 150 blog posts for other websites and blogs in a 9 month period.
However, as their online presence grew, he quickly decided to shift to syndication from creation.
You can read the details of their journey from guest posting to content syndication along with the factors they considered, here.
According to Anna Crowe, “Typically, the content Buffer syndicates on Medium has also been syndicated on other publisher sites like Huffington Post, NextWeb, etc. Here’s an example of a piece that was published in April 2013 on Buffer that was then repurposed on Huffington Post in January 2014, then finally posted to Medium in August 2016.”
Did content syndication affect them negatively? Did they witness any penalty or reduction in traffic?
Let’s look at their statistics
Brian Honigman commented on it showing the exact concern. Here is a screenshot for you to see –
He asked Kevan or Leo to share their thoughts on duplicate concerns since Google looks down upon this and takes it seriously.
Leo responded to this sharing his experience and stating that they have never witnessed any issues and their traffic has been rising steadily.
If you are a marketer in any sense, you know about Kissmetrics.
In this post, Neil Patel talks about whether or not you should repost your content on other websites and whether it would hurt your SEO.
When they began implementing content syndication they saw an increase in the referral traffic by 9492. However, they did see a downfall when Google launched its Panda update and they lost a chunk of traffic. This problem was quickly fixed by KISSmetrics using the rel=canonical tag.
Despite this experience, Neil Patel still advocates using this strategy to build brand presence and authority.
In his words, “If you are planning on using this tactic, do it from a branding perspective. Any extra traffic it drives back to you should be considered a bonus. And when using it, make sure you use a rel=canonical.”
Content Marketing Institute
While I could not gather much stats for CMI, the blog post submission guidelines allow the contributing authors to re-publish their content on other websites after a period of two weeks (generally, that is the time it takes to index the page on search engines).
According to Ahrefs, despite allowing to republish, the traffic witnesses by Content Marketing Institute has constantly increased.
Business2community used content syndication (through RSS feed) strategically to grow rapidly and build a model that works wonders in terms of traffic. At present, approximately 40% of the content on B2C is syndicated.
Brian’s unique model of permission-based RSS syndication means that every day he can publish high-quality articles from experts across the Web – bringing fresh, valuable content to his community. This has resulted in millions of subscribers and readers for their blog.
In this podcast, Brian talks about how B2C blog started with original content and stayed that way for a year. However, he was intrigued by content syndication and its potential to expand the exposure quickly.
Brian also mentions that there are no duplication issues because they link back to the original post and allows Google algorithms to know where the original post is situated.
Wordstream drives a lot of constant traffic to their blog and they also use content syndication to increase the exposure of their content. I am a regular reader of WordStream myself!
Brian Lang, in this article, goes on to give an example of how WordStream syndicates content.
Did that affect their traffic? Of course, no. If it did, they would just stop using this marketing strategy.
There you go! 5 well-known blogs in the marketing niche that utilize the potential of content syndication to its best.
Besides this, The Huffington Post, Entrepreneur, Business Insider, Mashable and many more source content from other blogs. Meaning, they publish already published content on their website or blog.