What is URL Canonicalization and how to Use Canonical Tag Properly? – WPSaviour

By WP Saviour •  Updated: 03/04/21 •  9 min read

Google undoubtedly wasn’t the primary search engine that surfaced the Web. However Google did issues in a greater means and offered outcomes that had been truly helpful. Google hasn’t stopped increasing as an organization since that very day.

Although search engine marketing is finished for all the various search engines that exist in the present day, one main search engine that handles a lot of the visitors on the Web is Google. Every time we discuss search engine marketing, individuals routinely assume that we’re speaking about optimizing the web site for Google.

With regards to search engine marketing, we have to verify many components, each onsite in addition to offsite. But when your onsite search engine marketing just isn’t on top of things, regardless of how properly you do your offsite search engine marketing, you’ll not get the outcomes you expect.

I used to be checking one of many web sites I used to be doing search engine marketing on, and I discovered that the web site had some critical points associated to Canonicalization. I mounted the problems very quickly but additionally determined that I might work on a put up for explaining what Canonicalization means and the way can one carry out Canonicalization of a web site correctly.

What’s URL Canonicalization?

The time period Canonicalization may be powerful to grasp. Let me attempt to clarify this in easy phrases.

Let’s say there are two URLs of a web site:

Each of these pages present content material, and none of those pages redirects to any considered one of them. This may end up in duplicate content material problem on Google, and you may face penalties.

Allow us to see yet another instance. There are two URLs on a web site that end in the identical web page decision.

If each of those net pages present the identical consequence, then this would possibly trigger a problem as properly!

You won’t pay a lot consideration to this problem, however this would possibly end in critical duplicate content material penalties. The issue with search engine bots is that they’ll’t resolve which model of the URL they need to add of their index. If two pages are resolving the identical content material, they may simply assume one copy is a duplicate of the opposite and your web site will get penalized.

In case your website is opening on 2 URLS displaying the identical content material, then you have to repair it. You have to use server settings in order that whether or not a person opens with www or with out www, the positioning will open on any of the one model. On this means, you may repair the canonicalization.
Although, at instances you wish to share identical content material on two URLS, then you should utilize rel=”canonical” tags to let search engine know that which is the unique and which one is a duplicate of it. This could prevent from duplicate content material penalties.

accurately apply URL Canonicalization?

Allow us to now verify how one can apply URL Canonicalization. We don’t must kind in strains of code to do it. A easy rel=”canonical” tag is sufficient to apply Canonicalization.


Take an instance, there are two URLs on the web site that end in the identical content material once they resolve. These two URLs are:

HTML Canonicalization

The second URL ends in the identical content material as the primary URL. They’re each displaying the identical web page and therefore you may apply the rel=”canonical” tag, on this case, to point that the URL with index.php is a Canonical URL of the primary one.

That is how it’s utilized.

HTTP Header Canonicalization

The above markup can be utilized within the case of HTML content material however what if we’re coping with non-HTML content material like a PDF doc? In these instances, we are able to use HTTP Header Canonicalization.

> HTTP/1.1 200 OK > Content material-Kind: utility/pdf > Hyperlink: ; rel=”canonical”

> Content material-Size: 785710

You may get extra details about HTTP Header primarily based Canonicalization on Google’s official Webmaster weblog.

When must you use Canonicalization?

Now that you recognize what precisely Canonicalization means, you may transfer ahead on the subject and see when  must you use it. As a result of there are a lot of extra instances apart from the 2 I’ve talked about within the examples above.

Listed here are just a few circumstances that may be prevented with correct URL Canonicalization.

These are some main circumstances wherein we are able to apply URL Canonicalization to save lots of our website from dealing with any type of duplicate content material penalty.

That is when it is best to NOT carry out URL Canonicalization!

There are eventualities wherein we must always not carry out URL Canonicalization, and this part of this put up is focused in direction of specifying these explicit circumstances. You can too contemplate these as errors with regards to URL Canonicalization. Let me checklist these one after the other. I’ll attempt to clarify most of them in a very easy method.

Skip pagination canonicalization

If you’re planning to canonicalize paginated URLs, then it is best to know that this can be a very unhealthy concept. You shouldn’t add a canonicalization tag on the second web page of a URL as that URL is not going to be listed in any respect by Google.

A number of Canonical tags are unhealthy

If an internet web page has a number of rel=”canonical” tags, then it may be actually dangerous to you. Make one particular tag and make it clear which one you like.

Don’t add Canonical tags on shortened URLs

I’ve seen that many individuals apply the Canonical tag like this:

This model of canonicalization is an invite to a number of errors. It is advisable to perceive that the extra full your canonical markup is, the higher it is going to be for you and your content material.

The above markup is a greater technique to apply canonicalization.

Don’t apply canonicalization for localization #search engine marketing #Google

Localization means concentrating on and manipulating the content material of the web site in an effort to serve it on the idea of the area it’s being seen in. Should you actually need to create a greater web site on your international viewers, you may learn this information to create multilingual web sites by Google.

Canonicalization on cell model of internet sites

Only a canonical tag to distinguish a cell web site on the subdomain of your essential web site just isn’t sufficient. Google suggests that you simply use each rel=”alternate” in addition to rel=”canonical” in an effort to point out that the URL is for displaying the cell model of the web site.

Right here is how one can implement it:

> > > > >


Don’t use a Canonical tag outdoors of

Search engine bots will completely ignore the tags which might be set outdoors the are of the web site so in an effort to apply a correct canonical tag, it is advisable add it between .

Don’t use a number of Canonical tags on a web site

Utilizing a number of Canonical tags is pointless. Search engines like google and yahoo will ignore each of the tags and you’ll face bizarre search engine marketing conduct and points. A number of canonical tag URLs are generally prompted because of plugin glitches so that you may need to control that.

Don’t level a Canonical URL to a web site with a non-200 standing code

A web site with a code like 301 and 302 will drive the various search engines to crawl one further URL and which means that they should crawl two URLs without delay. This provides as much as an enormous quantity and it will possibly simply deplete your crawl finances.

A URL with a standing code of 404 is a very wasted crawl and engines like google will ignore your tag in any respect.

Don’t use Canonicalization for PageRank Sculpting

PageRank isn’t any extra a public entity or statistic to a web site however it’s nonetheless thought of by the various search engines. If you’re planning to make use of Canonical tags for PageRank sculpting and to get higher rating, let me make it clear that it’s going to do extra hurt to your web site than good.

Ultimate Phrase

The idea of onsite search engine marketing is far larger than what you think about it to be. It is advisable to maintain many issues without delay, and also you additionally must hold your self up to date with the adjustments that happen in on a regular basis time.

This put up was a put up for displaying how one can apply Canonical URLs on a web site. Remember that Canonicalization is a fragile course of and if executed in a improper method, it will possibly hurt your web site. Preserve your web site in verify and be sure to carry out Canonicalization correctly.

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WP Saviour

I am a WordPress specialist. My mission is to help you create beautiful websites with ease!