Empty Pages Are Duplicate Content

Empty Pages Are Duplicate Content According to Google!


Have you ever surfed the Internet and experienced a web site that displays a blank page? I am sure that you know the ones that I am talking about. I’m talking about those blank pages offering you no navigation, no page content, just an empty page that is blank. There are a few issues that cause this, such as, issues with HTML, web server or a security safeguard routine that has failed. Either way, empty pages are to be avoided at all costs!

There was this incidence where a webmaster had the above issue. His website, suffered serious ranking problems because of it. One should be aware of the problem that could result, if the Google, spots an empty page!

Google’s JohnMu, a “Google’s Webmaster Help Forum Employee”, had a shocking response about the problem. It appears that Google couldn’t identify the content of the blank page. They made a decision to remove it. It was stated that when Google encounters a multiple blank or empty HTML page, it considers those pages to be duplicate content of each other.

JohnMu said:

It looks like some of the pages from your site have been returning empty HTML pages with almost no content. In general, when this happens, we may assume that you’re trying to return this content on purpose, and if it’s identical with other content that we’ve found on your site, we might assume that they’re duplicates. If you are not aware of this issue, it may make sense to check with your web-hosters to find out more — perhaps it’s a part of a “security” mechanism?

At any rate, once we are able to re-crawl your pages and recognize that they are unique, we’ll generally resolve this automatically over time.

Hope it helps! John

I find it intriguing that Google would not mark those types of empty pages as errors and re-crawl them at a later date. I find this to be another compelling reason, webmasters, should stay away from publishing empty pages on their website.

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