Google and other search engines have become active in down ranking plagiarized content webpages and poor quality content since 2012. Hence, if you thought that you could get away with content that looks more or less similar to what has been posted earlier, than you should reconsider your approach to online marketing.
Writing is a subjective matter and each writer has their unique style. That being said, the internet is loaded with plagiarized content, so much so, that it becomes difficult to actually determine what the original content was.
Self Plagiarism and Why You Should Avoid It
Then again, writers maintain that they can reuse their own work; in this case, the content that has already been published, without defining it as plagiarism. This is also known self plagiarism, which to be fair, has its ethics to ensure that the copyrights of the publisher are not infringed. However, when it comes to content, self plagiarism has no place in the world of online marketing, as with any plagiarized content.
The reason why you should avoid self plagiarism and content plagiarism on the whole is that as web marketers, your essential goal to produce quality content is to increase visibility. To do so, you need the help of Google and other search engines as well as social media marketing. Now, if you post content that is criminally similar to what has been posted earlier by your competitor, you’re not only losing your search engine rankings, but also creating an unreliable image on the internet. Long gone are the days where you could get away with plagiarized content on the internet.
How Much Plagiarism Is Not Plagiarism?
For academic papers and whitepapers, most organizations and institutions don’t accept submissions with over 10% to 15% of plagiarized content. However, as far as content is concerned, you can avoid the axe on search engines by having content that is not more than 20% plagiarized.
There are many reasons as to why you can have a certain degree of plagiarism in your digital content. The major one being that the internet is stacked with billions of pages of content. Out of those billion web pages, at least a 100,000 would be in your industry. So even if a 1000 of those web pages have regular content posted on them, chances are that you will eventually post content that is similar to what has already been posted.
Content writing is not an invention, but a rediscovery. Hence, most of the content that you write about may or may not have been published on the internet already. In this regard, there are chances that plagiarism software may find a certain percentage of plagiarism in your content, even when you didn’t perform research online. This has more to do with certain limitations of the content plagiarism software than anything else.
Plagiarism is a poor practice in any instance, whether content, academic papers, or any other type of writing. What you should aim to do is produce content that is more relevant to your business, not the industry as a whole. Targeted content can help you keep plagiarism at bay and readers’ interest on a high!