Keyword Cannibalization – How To Identify & Fix Content Cannibalization Issue?

  • Is your website losing traffic?
  • Is your organic traffic going down?
  • Are you losing keyword ranking?
  • Despite trying hard, you are not able to reach on page #1 (Even with new content)

If you answer yes to one or more of this, You might be a victim of Keyword cannibalization.

What is “Cannibalization in SEO” and how it works?

How to find if your website is impacted by Keyword cannibalization


How to fix keyword cannibalism issue. 

This is what you are going to learn today. 

Keyword cannibalization (also known as content cannibalization) is one underlooked segment of keyword research and keyword mapping, if not done right, that could severely impact your website traffic. 

In fact, last year, ShoutMeLoud traffic dropped significantly, and when I diagnose the cause for the same, my research concluded that I was losing traffic because multiple pages were trying to rank for the same keyword. (Cannibalization issue)

In turn, Google has started downranking many such clusters of pages, and over a course of a few months, I lost more than 20% of the traffic.

It was a panic situation, however hue and cry never helps, so I did what any optimist blogger would do.

I started fixing the problem!

It took months of work to finally put my website out of cannibalization and this tutorial is a reflection of all the work I have put to recover from keyword cannibalized websites.

This is an extra-ordinary issue that could happen to anyone who has a website, and never focused on Keyword mapping or building logical internal links or could be happen due to uncontrollable circumstances

Let’s dive deep into this subject, and learn something new today.

What is Keyword cannibalization?

Keyword cannibalization is an SEO issue that occurs when more than one page of your website is trying to rank for the same/similar keywords. This confuses the search engine, and it periodically tries to understand which one of the pages should be ranked on the first page.

In a lack of clear direction, it lowers down the ranking of all pages, and none of them rank for the target keyword.

Another common cause of Keyword cannibalization is when a webmaster creates multiple pages targeting the same topic. This may work initially, but as search evolves, those different pages end up serving the same searcher intent.

Most of the time this happens unintentionally, but the traffic and ranking impact of this is severe.

In my finding, I have seen an entire cluster of pages (category) losing the ranking because of keyword cannibalism.

What I found most interesting is, when keyword cannibalization is fixed, it resulted in improved ranking of entire category of pages.

I have tested this theory on a few websites, and every time the competing pages were identified, and proper action is taken, there is a significant



This article was written by Harsh Agrawal and originally published on ShoutMeLoud.

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are "affiliate links." This means if you click on the link and purchase the product, We may receive an affiliate commission.

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