How Does Plagiarized Content Affect SEO and How to Avoid it?

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How does plagiarized content affect SEO?

Is duplicate content bad for SEO and how to avoid its harmful effect?

All this and more in my guide to SEO and plagiarized content below.

Let’s go!

How does plagiarism affect SEO?

Table of Contents

What is Plagiarism in SEO Content Writing?

First, before knowing how plagiarized content hurts your SEO, you need to know what exactly plagiarism is.

Definition: Plagiarism is using someone else’s piece of online written work, claiming it to be yours, and taking all the credit.

You’d think that this has been a common practice on the internet for many years now, and you’d be completely right.

Long before special tools and apps were developed to detect plagiarism, creators or people who ran their own businesses would copy-paste the most popular sources to gain the same success.

It worked way back then, but times have changed, and now plagiarism is easily detected by both Google and plagiarism detection tools (read my guide to best plagiarism software here).

But plagiarism, just like anything, is not black and white.

Here’s a broad overview of types of plagiarism:

Complete Plagiarism

Complete plagiarism is the most obvious way of plagiarizing content.

Basically, it is stealing someone’s written work, presenting it as your own, and reaping all the potential benefits that come with it.

In the blogging and SEO world, it’s copying entire articles from your competitors and pasting them on your blog, and publishing them as your own.

This practice was rampant in the past because primitive Google wasn’t able to track content duplication properly, and because of something called link inversion.

Basically, if you post an article on your blog (let’s say you’re a new blog with DR 1 website), and I go and copy your article and publish it on my blog (DR 7o, established website), Google will consider my version as the original (canonical) because I have more PageRank, i.e., a more authoritative website.

Google was way more dependent on PageRank back then.

Nowadays, copy-paste plagiarism doesn’t work as Google is just too smart for that.


Patchwriting is a (slightly) more sophisticated form of plagiarizing.

First, you copy the parts of text you like, and then you change words for their rarely used synonyms, invert the order of sentences, and so on.

The end result is that you make the same points as the original article but in slightly different wording.

Google can see through this quite easily, although not as easily as blatant article copying from the previous example.

And in fact, one of their points from the Helpful Content Update is :

“Are you mainly summarizing what others have to say without adding much value?”

This bullet point shows you they can detect patchwriting algorithmically.

advice from Google's Helpful Content Update- don't summarize and paraphrase content

Unintentional Plagiarism

Unintentional plagiarizing is a common thing. An idea comes to your mind, you sit down to write and you write in your own words, then you edit and as a final check run it through a plagiarism checker and you see 40% content duplication.

It’s rare, it’s unintentional, but it happens and then you need to go back and reword and paraphrase your sentences and paragraphs until the score is much lower.


Self-plagiarism comes in two forms.

You can copy text from one of your articles and paste it into another article. That is not a problem as long as the text snippet you copied is a very small part of the new article you’re writing.

For example, I wrote several articles on the topic of ( is a premium AI content detection tool).

And the pricing section of each article is nearly identical. Yes, I took it from my pricing article and I republished it in my review, free trial, and coupon articles.

I know that’s not dangerous because Google turns a blind eye to low level self plagiarism, and because that copied text snippet is only a small part of these otherwise completely original articles.

this tet snipped is copied from my pricing page

The second way to self-plagiarize is to unconsciously write in the same words about a topic as you already did in the past on your own blog.

Since it’s an unconscious act you won’t know about it and that’s why you need to use an anti-plagiarism software tool before you publish.

Check out my guide to the best plagiarism checkers here!

Pro tip: what is the most insidious form of plagiarism in SEO?

The most insidious form of plagiarism in SEO is patchwriting. This is because the content on the surface looks original and plagiarism checker tools report it as unique content never before seen on the web.

However, Google can compare that text with everything else they already have in their index and can easily find the true source of your content.

This basically means excessive patchwriting can hurt the SEO performance of the blog without you having a clue. Especially dangerous when you’re getting content from freelance writers and you don’t know where they did their research.

How Plagiarized Content Can Affect Your Website (8 Ways)

8 ways plagiarized content negatively affects your SEO

  • #1– you can get penalized by a search engine;
  • #2– poor reading experience;
  • #3– damaged reputation and no brand equity;
  • #4– lower organic ranking in Google, Bing, and other search engines;
  • #5– lower backlinking potential;
  • #6– no content sharing;
  • #7- legal trouble;
  • #8- increased bounce rate.

More details are below.

Google wants to provide the most relevant results for its users, which is why it values high-quality and informative content with accurate information.

Here are 8 ways plagiarized content hurts your SEO and your website and why anything you post on your site needs to be high quality, and original.

#1- You Can Get Penalized

Content plagiarism penalty works like this.

If a page on your site is completely plagiarized or heavily duplicated/poorly paraphrased it’ll be ranked lower on SERPs.

If most of your blog’s content is lifted from other blogs without much original thought, a Panda filter will be applied to your website and you will lose 99% of your search traffic.

Here’s an example of when one of my niche sites got hit with a Panda content quality penalty (it’s a long story):

Google Panada duplicate content penalty

The good news is that if you write original content, you might not rank as you still need to do SEO, but at least you won’t be lowered to the depths of the 10th page of Google because you plagiarized someone’s work.

#2- Poor Reading Experience

Plagiarized content is often stilted-sounding content. The words make sense and are in the right order, but something feels off to your reader.

This is because the thoughts and opinions in those paragraphs are not yours, they’re someone else’s and you don’t really know how to absorb those insights, chew them, and spit them out infused with your personality.

Such content will make you look like an amateur and people will leave your blog without clicking on your affiliate links, without buying, without subscribing. and they will forget your blog and you as a blogger.

I know you don’t want that, right?

#3- Damaged Reputation/ No Brand Equity

If you know how to properly use paraphrasing tools, your causal readers probably won’t notice when you take someone else’s work and present it as your own.

However, if you don’t know how to paraphrase correctly or you get on your blog a savvy reader who’s very knowledgeable on the topic of your blog post, they’ll notice you’re stealing the words and opinions of others and will let the whole world know about it, shaming you and damaging your reputation as an online web publisher.

Want an example?

This isn’t from blogging, but from YouTube.

MrBeast is one of the most popular YouTuber in the world. He has hundreds of millions of subscribers. And so many people are trying to replicate his success,… quite literally so by replicating his most famous and best videos

Here’s a video of a guy who first noticed this practice (and made a video about it), and then take a look at the examples below.

Mr Beast copycats

Mr Beast bounty hunter video

Copycat video

Bottom line: blatant content theft is more noticeable on video, but textual content theft won’t go unnoticed for long.


#4- Lower Organic Rankings in Google and Bing

Google and Bing value original content that answers search intent users have.

This is because such content makes their product (Search) better and web users more satisfied.

Unlike creating unique content to scale up your traffic, if you copy content from others and post it on your blog you won’t rank and you’ll get no traffic from search engines.

Pro tip: however, if you have a small percentage of duplicate content on your post (for example you included a couple of quotes), your article might rank but rankings will always be more volatile and it’ll b easier for your competitors to overtake you in the SERPS.

#5- You’ll get Fewer Backlinks

As mentioned above, Google will not rank highly content that has detectable plagiarized content.

This is not good for you because sites that rank high in Google get links on autopilot just because they rank in there.

For example, I write a lot about SEMrush. And I have this SEMrush statistics page.

And now look I got a link from someone writing their SEMrush review.

It’s an organic link I had zero influence on and was genuinely surprised to see it pop up.

SEMrush statistics page got an organic backlink
SEMrush statistics page got an organic backlink

Pro tip: you need links to rank on Google.

Backlinks pass link equity and direct readers to your website from other websites (this is called referral traffic), so they’re an important part of SEO. For example, the number one Google result has an average of 3.8 times more backlinks than positions two to ten.

It’s not only about how many backlinks you have, though. For the best results, you need many trusted websites to link to your site.

#6- People Won’t Share Plagiarized Content

You want your content shared on social media because it can get you a lot of referral traffic from social media and it’s free brand exposure for you.

Another benefit is that social signals coming from genuine accounts from your niche, over time and in a randomized fashion act as a quality and trust signal for Google. If you have it your content will rank higher across the board.

Plagiarized content that people recognize as such won’t get shared and you won’t benefit from the SEO value that genuine social sharing can bring you.

#7- You Can Get In Legal Trouble

As you might imagine stealing someone’s content is not OK. It’s called intellectual property theft and it’s a criminal offense.

Of course, plagiarising directly or paraphrasing and trying to hide it is a form of copyright theft and the best you can hope for is to get a DMCA takedown request from the owner of the content.

It’s the best because other things that can happen are way worse for you.

#8- Increased Bounce Rate

People who read your content have likely been to other sites on the internet and haven’t found the answers they were looking for.

So now they’re on your page looking for an answer. If they read your content and recognize you’re just repeating what other bloggers said before they’ll leave and increase your site’s bounce rate.

This will hurt your Google and Bing rankings.

Pro tip: if people bounce your page and then do the same search again in Google and click on a different result, this is a strong signal that your content was not a good match for them. Over time this will get your page permanently demoted.

You always want the searcher to end their journey with your page. And you can’t achieve that with plagiarized content.

Best Practices for Avoiding Plagiarism in SEO and Content Writing

There are many ways how you can be safe when creating copy for the web.

To mention just a few:

Detailed Research

Doing research on the spur of the moment or at the last minute is a way to produce a crappy post full of unintentional plagiarism.

A much smarter approach is to do detailed research before you write a single word.

With enough research, you won’t need to resort to paraphrasing someone’s content for lack of inspiration. Instead, you’ll have your own thoughts about the matter and words will just flow.

Also, while doing research you’ll often find parts you want to quote. Quotes are technically duplicate content but don’t worry about it as long as you cite your sources.

Within the WordPress dashboard, you can press the blockquote button and put in italics and add a source.

use blockquote in WordPress to quote and cite

For example, here’s the definition of citing from Cambridge

“To speak or write words taken from a particular writer or written work”.


As mentioned earlier in this article, paraphrasing is a form of plagiarism.

However, proper paraphrasing is more than switching words for their closest synonyms. Instead, it’s putting in your own words how you understand the initial author’s idea. So, it takes more effort than changing a few words and posting the work under your name.

Paraphrasing in moderation is perfectly fine and won’t hurt your SEO.

Best tools to check the uniqueness of a website’s content

Now, let’s see which tools can make your regular copy a hero copy. There are many plagiarism checkers for SEO on the market, but I’m going to cover below the two tools I use on a daily basis.


Copyscape Plagiarism Checker

Copyscape is one of the best premium plagiarism checkers on the market and it’s the plagiarism checker I use regularly to scan the content I write (for unintentional self-plagiarism) and the writing of my freelance writers (for intentional plagiarism).

It’s easy to use Copyscape. All you need to do is enter the URL of the content you want to scan and the tool will tell you whether it’s plagiarized content or not.

For example, here I added the URL of my best plagiarism checkers guide, and let’s see what Copyscape shows me.

You can see there are 30 results where Copyscape found plagiarized content. Now I have to investigate these URLs one by one to see if the plagiarism is intentional or not.

Copyscame detecting plagiarized content

Copyscape also allows you to check batches of pages via XML sitemaps. This is super convenient for large sites doing content audits.

All you have to do is go to Copyscape Batch Search and submit your XML sitemap or a list of URLs (up to 10 000 entries).

Copyscape Batch Search- add your XML sitemap here

Copyscape is an affordable anti-plagiarism tool. You pay 3c for 200 words of scanned content+ 1c per 100 words from then on.

When I pay for CopyScape I do the $10 payments and these batches last me a couple of months, easily.

Quillbot Plagiarism Checker

Quillbot Plagiarism Checker app

Quillbot Plagiarism Checker is an app that is part of the premium Quillbot subscription Meaning, you can’t use this tool unless you’re subscribed to a paid Quillbot plan.

This makes Quillbot a suboptimal choice if you don’t want to get a paraphrasing tool too.

However, if you already have access to Quillbot or intend to get it then know you will have access to Quillbot Plagiarism Checker.

Here’s how it works.

Take a snippet of text you want to check for plagiarism, (I’ll take a snippet of text from my guide to AI content detection software) and run it through the tool

Quillbor Plagiarims Checker found duplicate content

You can see Quillbot found my page to be 100% duplicated, which is true given that it lives on my blog, published a long time ago.

Since you can’t buy Quillbot Plagiarism Checker separately from a premium Quilbot subscription, here’s the pricing breakdown.

  • Quillbot Free;
  • Quillbot Monthly– $19.95/mo;
  • Quillbot Semi-Annual – $13.33 per month, or $79.95 paid once in a 6-month period;
  • Quillbot Yearly– $8.33 per month, or $99.95 billed once in 12-month period.

Each plan gives you 20 pages to scan with Quillbot’s Plagiarism Checker. Each page is counted as up to 250 words of content. If you want more, you can easily purchase more credits.

  • $7.45 for 25 pages;
  • $24.95 for 100 pages;
  • and $49.95 for 250 pages.

Quillbot Plagiarism Checker is in my opinion overly expensive and as such, I don’t recommend it. In fact, I recommend you use CopyScape for checking plagiarism and Quillbot for paraphrasing content and for checking grammar for free (Quillbot has a free grammar checker, you don’t even need an account).

Read my Quillbot pricing, Quillbot free trial, and Quillbot discount code guides next!

My Quillbot review is an excellent read as well.

SEO and Content Plagiarism (Expert Roundup)

Do You Allow Duplicate Content on Your Site and if not, why?

As much as I can help it, I avoid duplicate content. I use Ahrefs site audit to see if any duplicate content on my website doesn’t have the proper canonical tags.

Which Tool Do You use to Check for Content Plagiarism? Why Did You Pick That Service?

I use Grammarly to check for plagiarism.

It lists out each section of my blog or content piece that lists a percentage amount of how much it is plagiarized. Then I can update the copy within Grammarly to ensure it’s original.

Most of the time, the “plagiarized” content is just common sentences or phrases, so it’s helpful that Grammarly cites the source and industry from which the content originated.

Do You Consider AI-Generated Content as Duplicate Content Even if Plagiarism Checkers Say it’s Original?

I don’t consider AI-generated content duplicate content; instead, I view it more as regurgitated content. Suppose it’s not showing that any content is plagiarized.

In that case, it’s technically “original.”However, since AI currently only pulls from existing sources, if your content is 100% written by AI, there is nothing new or original for the reader, which is not very helpful.

  • Name– Muhammad Abdullah
  • Website–

Do You Allow Duplicate Content on Your Site and if not, why?

We look to avoid it as much as we can. Every content piece that is prepared has to go through a thorough screening process with both the SEO and Editorial team. With Copyscape we tend to check overtime if any old content is copied or not, meanwhile, Ahrefs help us out with any internal pieces that may have slipped and are pretty similar to one another

Apart from Google not liking duplicated content, it could also potentially ruin our audience as well, with everything accessible with a simple click people can stumble upon duplicated content easily nowadays, which could be harmful to the branding and reputation our organization has built

Which Tool Do You use to Check for Content Plagiarism? Why Did You Pick That Service?

We have a couple of tools to help out with those, Copyscape, but I personally prefer using Grammarly

Apart from being the easiest to use (personal opinion), the plagiarized aspect presented on the tool is easier to understand. Also providing a lot of details as to where certain phrases or sentences within the content or copies is plagiarized from also provides an added bonus

Do You Consider AI-Generated Content as Duplicate Content Even if Plagiarism Checkers Say it’s Original?

Not really. To be fair, AI-Generated content is done with the help of data that the tool has, but with advancements at such a huge level, it won’t be entirely copied. That being said, with ChatGPT around a lot of people are relying on getting stuff done there, I personally use it from time to time as well for minor content related pieces.

But I wouldn’t rely on it completely even if Plagiarism Checkers say it’s 100% unique, I would still jump in and look to make edits here and there, possible grammatical errors or even the odd incorrect stats.

Do You Allow Duplicate Content on Your Site and if not, why?

I do not understand people who do not accept duplicate content at all. There are many cases when avoiding it is just impossible, like using a citation or quoting another author, using proverbs, and stating definitions from a dictionary.

Search engines clearly understand that such duplicate content always comes for the ultimate benefit of the reader.

Re-writing some types of content will in some cases look inappropriate, miserable, and ridiculous. In all other cases, unique content is a rule of thumb.

Which Tool Do You use to Check for Content Plagiarism? Why Did You Pick That Service?

My SEO tools bookmark folder will have for these purposes (which is probably the number one tool you come across if you Google for “check duplicate content”).

I am not saying it is good or bad. It just fairly well does its job showing acceptable amounts of advertising. I may split a larger piece of content into smaller parts (which is not always convenient) as there is a certain limit for that but in most cases the tool does its job.

The reason I am using it is: Self-explanatory interface, and speed, and is not particularly demanding in terms of my tasks.

Do You Consider AI-Generated Content as Duplicate Content Even if Plagiarism Checkers Say it’s Original?

Short answer is yes. But disputes over this particular question will never stop. When a copywriter is preparing a piece of content, he or she is also building their thesis on existing articles and facts. But still, always come to a different conclusion and develop their own chain of logic.

Understanding the start point of content creation aims to pursue, unique author style and conclusions are what will differentiate a human author from AI-created content.

Can giants like Google successfully implement algorithms capable of recognizing AI-written content is a question I am ready to pay to have answered. But chances are high that such content is going to be flagged as “most likely generated by AI” by Search engines and devalued.

Do You Allow Duplicate Content on Your Site and if not, why?

Personally, I don’t allow duplicate content on my website, you can check it for yourself. Now, when it comes to the reasoning behind this stance, it’s quite simple. The internet is full of similar information. So the only way you can really stand out is to make something of your own. I don’t even use stock images. Most of the headline pictures on my website are my own photographs.

Which Tool Do You use to Check for Content Plagiarism? Why Did You Pick That Service?

I try to be thorough, so I usually use several tools. Starting with Grammarly and Smallseotools to check if the content is stolen. Recently, I started using Text Classifier by OpenAI, which helps me detect AI-generated content. It’s not perfect, but it sometimes shows if the author is just too lazy.

Do You Consider AI-Generated Content as Duplicate Content Even if Plagiarism Checkers Say it’s Original?

This question is somewhat connected with the previous one. Even if the plagiarism checker says the text is original I still want to check if it was written by AI. I mean I’m not against using AI tools to generate the text but I want to see that the author made some changes and did his own research, and provided his input. So while I do consider AI generated content to be duplicates I can put up with it as long as the copywriter made some changes to it. Sort of made it more human.

Do You Allow Duplicate Content on Your Site and if not, why?

We don’t.

Duplicate content is a no-go when it comes to SEO rankings. We have spent more than seven years experimenting with content and we can say with utmost certainty that duplicate content won’t simply cut it.

Even if we give credit to the original user, there’s no sense in presenting someone else’s content. It won’t resonate with our audience and won’t leave a lasting impression either.

What’s more, allowing duplicate content on our blog/website can actually hurt engagement and satisfaction rates. So we steer clear of it!

However, there are times when duplicate content actually makes sense, especially, if you’re publishing a piece that requires hard-hitting statistics or quotes. In that case, we suggest you add your unique perspective and make it truly valuable to your audience instead of spinning the same information as others.

Which Tool Do You use to Check for Content Plagiarism? Why Did You Pick That Service?

We have scoured the Internet far in search of a reliable plagiarism tool and found this holy grail – Duplichecker.

This tool is the real deal – it is efficient and incredibly accurate. It has helped us catch more duplicate content than we ever thought possible.

Do You Consider AI-Generated Content as Duplicate Content Even if Plagiarism Checkers Say it’s Original?

No, we don’t. AI-generated content isn’t inherently bad. But here’s the catch – it shouldn’t be duplicated, filler, and lack of precise detail.

We know there’s been a lot of talks lately about the use of AI in content creation. But let’s set the deal straight: We do take the help of AI in content marketing but don’t rely on it completely.

It helps our marketers get started writing instead of staring at a blank editor and it can be a lifesaver when it comes to creating compelling titles, outlines, metas and FAQs.

But here’s the thing – not all AI’s are created equal and reliable. That’s why it is crucial to do your due diligence and ensure you’re using the best tool.

Do You Allow Duplicate Content on Your Site and if not, why?

No. Duplicate content is 100% avoided by me. Of course, there are 2 main reasons for it. One is Google hates plagiarism, and the second is the most genuine reason to avoid plagiarism: “I don’t want to deceive my audience by putting duplicate content in front of them.”
After all, the audience is everything to a content writer; of course, I can’t take any chance of losing my audience.

Which Tool Do You use to Check for Content Plagiarism? Why Did You Pick That Service?

I use Grammarly as a plagiarism checker. The reason for choosing it is my own experience with this tool.

I have used Grammarly for a long time; of course, it is the best tool to check for grammatical errors and writing style. It has been helping me since I started blogging.
Grammarly plagiarism checker shows me the source if I copy something from anywhere. I like how it shows the plagiarism score, i.e., the percentage score. The main reason for choosing it is my belief in the tool.

Do You Consider AI-Generated Content as Duplicate Content Even if Plagiarism Checkers Say it’s Original?

AI-Content writing tools are in huge demand these days. Of course, I also use them, but as far as I talk about plagiarism, I don’t rely on them. I use them to get ideas to start something where I am stuck.
If I talk about considering AI content as duplicate, I would say that it depends on how we use it. If we completely copy AI-generated content to our sites, it would harm us.

Therefore, I say that what matters is how you use it. Even Google says it doesn’t matter if you write with an AI writing tool; the content should be useful to the audience.

Do You Allow Duplicate Content on Your Site and if not, why?

I don’t allow duplicate content on my website, and it’s not only because of Google, but due to user experience. Indeed, having duplicate content can confuse and frustrate the audience.

If they come across multiple pages with the same information, they may question the value of my content and ultimately choose to look elsewhere for answers. I don’t want to lose readers this way, so I avoid content duplication.

Which Tool Do You use to Check for Content Plagiarism? Why Did You Pick That Service?

I’ve used several content plagiarism checkers, but for now, I picked SmallSEOTools. It’s a free service that can quickly provide me with a comprehensive plagiarism report.

Our content creators like the way it highlights the plagiarized content, making it easier for them to take the necessary actions. Also, it can be used to check content in various formats, including text, PDF, and HTML.

In fact, I recently used SmallSEOTools to check an article an external contributor created, and it identified some instances of plagiarism that we were able to rectify before publishing the article.

This saved us from potential legal issues and helped us maintain our credibility as a content publisher.

Do You Consider AI-Generated Content as Duplicate Content Even if Plagiarism Checkers Say it’s Original?

Since I don’t treat ab AI-generated content as duplicate, I avoid publishing it on my website, too. While some may argue that AI-generated articles can be a time-saver, I find that publishing such content can be just as harmful as plagiarism, in the eyes of both Google and our readers.

Not only is AI-generated content often of poor quality, but it can also negatively impact SEO results and provide our audience with a subpar experience.

This can lead to a lack of engagement and potentially deter readers from returning for more content, which is counterproductive to our goals as a publisher.

SEO and Plagiarized Content FAQ

#1- Why is Plagiarism Important in SEO?

Plagiarism is important in SEO because plagiarized content can hurt your SEO performance. Your links won’t work as well, your content won’t rank as it could as long as you have plagiarized content on your page.

Over time, excessive plagiarism will kill your blog.

#2- How Much Plagiarism is OK for SEO?

You can achieve the best results with SEO if you have zero percent duplicate content. However, sometimes it’s unavoidable, for example, you quote someone and that is obviously duplicate content.

However, that won’t hurt you as long as you have a link as an attribution and as long as the percentage of duplicate content is very low for example less than 5%.


#3- What Does Plagiarism Mean in SEO?

Plagiarism in SEO means blogger A takes content from high-ranking blogger B hoping to replicate his success and steal his search engine rankings.

Another type of plagiarism in SEO is when a blogger steals on-page SEO tactics from other bloggers.

Yet another type of plagiarism is when a blogger steals schema from the winning competitor’s page.

They’re countless ways in SEO to perform online plagiarism.

#4- Is 7% Content Plagiarism Bad for SEO?

7% content plagiarism is not a big deal for SEO providing that 93% of your content is high quality and original.

#5- Is 17% Content Plagiarism Bad for SEO?

17% content plagiarism is bad for SEO because the percentage of duplication is pretty high; however, you can overcome that originality deficit with the rest of the content excellent and with aggressive promotion on your part.

#6- Is 30% Content Plagiarism Bad for SEO?

30% content plagiarism is bad for SEO because having almost one third of your content duplicated is plenty and the effect on SEO will be deleterious, even if you promote your content like crazy.

#7- Does Paraphrasing Count as Plagiarizing?

Paraphrasing counts as plagiarizing as paraphrasing is a form of patchwriting. If you use paraphrasing tools you just change sentences and words while preserving meaning.

Google can infer meaning from your texts and paragraphs so if you rewrite a paragraph Google will notice and it will affect your SEO.

#8- Does Google Check for Plagiarism?

Google checks for plagiarism when crawling the web with Google-bot. They do this because they want to have new, fresh original content in the SERPs that will make their search results better and their users happier.

#9- Is AI Content Considered Duplicate Content?

AI content writers powered by GPT-2 GPT-3, GPT.3.5, GPT-4, GPT-J GPT-Neo, ChatGPT and other LLMs are in essence very advanced content spinners.

They have to spit out what they learned and what’s already online in some form. As such, their content is 100% duplicated by its very nature.

However, that doesn’t mean you can’t use AI content to your advantage.

Google has said that heavily edited AI content with human insights and input is perfectly fine.

If you’re worried about AI content, you need to use AI content detectors to find content written by robots.

Check out my guide to the best AI content detection tools next.

And if you’re looking for an AI writer tool that can help you produce udetectable content, Jasper AI is one of the best.

To learn more about Jasper AI, read my Jasper AI review next.

My tutorial to Jasper AI pricing, Jasper AI coupon code, and Jasper AI free trial are excellent reads as well.

#10- Can Grammarly Check Plagiarism?

Grammarly can check content plagiarism. In fact, it’s one of the main features of Grammarly Premium.

However, this feature is available only with Grammarly premium plans (Grammarly pricing explained) and I find that you get more value with a combo of Quillbot and Copyscape instead. That’s why I didn’t include Grammarly above when I talked about the best plagiarism checker tools. I use Grammarly mainly as a free online grammar checker.

Note: to try the tool for free take a look at my Grammarly Premium free trial next!

Grammarly also offers discounts for college students if you’re one.

Grammarly plagiarism checker

#11- Does SEMrush Have a Plagiarism Checker?

SEMrush does have a plagiarism checker and it’s part of the SEMrush SEO writing assistant.

I didn’t include it here because SEMrush is an expensive SEO/SEM toolset that’s best suited for pro marketers to run all aspects of their digital marketing and content marketing campaigns.

In other words, you shouldn’t buy SEMrush just to get access to their plagiarism checker.

However, SEMrush free trial is a viable option to at least try the tool for free.

You can also learn about SEMrush pricing as well, including how to save money on a paid plan.

#12- Is Content Syndication a Form of Plagiarizing in SEO?

Content syndication is not a form of plagiarism in SEO. Instead, it’s a type of automated blog post promotion that will not hurt your SEO as long as every syndicated article has a canonical tag and a backlink pointing to the original source.

This will tell Google your content is original and other versions are duplicates.

#13- How to Find Internal Duplicate Content (Boilerplate Content) on a Website?

Internal content duplication is not as bad as content plagiarism. In fact, Google’s algorithms mostly ignore it.

But, have too much of it and it will impact your crawl budget and your site’s overall quality score.

This has the potential to lower your rankings, especially during core updates.

The good news is that there’s a free tool called Siteliner that can show you all the internal duplication your site currently has.

Siteliner shows you internal duplication for free

Pro tip: I try my best to have as little boilerplate content as possible but I also don’t worry about it too much. I know Google can handle it appropriately.

Here’s a quote from John Mueller from a Google Webmaster Help thread:

“Google is generally quite good at recognizing “boilerplate text” (text which you repeat on many pages) and treating it appropriately. I wouldn’t worry about having to place a disclaimer on your pages. If you want to make it clearer to search engines that it’s not relevant to your content, you could also just place the text in an image (personally, I’d just place the text on the pages normally).”

SEO and Plagiarized Content (Conclusion)

To rank in Google it’s not enough to use advanced SEO tools like Ahrefs, SEMrush, or

Instead, you need to combine what the tools can do for your SEO with plagiarism checking.

Because content plagiarism is a serious thing for Google. It wastes their crawl budget, dilutes the quality of the web, brings nothing new, and is a waste of time for everybody.

Now that you know how badly plagiarized content affects your SEO make sure you don’t commit acts of plagiarism, consciously or unconsciously.

Use the free and paid plagiarism checkers I mentioned above and above all learn to write well.

That’s how you’ll succeed with original thorough blogging and high-quality SEO.

Leave your comments below!

Nikola Roza

Nikola Roza is a blogger behind Nikola Roza- SEO for the Poor and Determined. He writes for bloggers who don't have huge marketing budget but still want to succeed. Nikola is passionate about precious metals IRAs and how to invest in gold and silver for a safer financial future. Learn about Nikola here.

1 thought on “How Does Plagiarized Content Affect SEO and How to Avoid it?”

  1. Nikola this is an excellent post my friend.

    Google is really really, really really, really smart. Or I should say the algorithm developed by smart people sniffs out copied content. There seems to be a way around being dishonest in the blogging world until the lack of honesty catches up to you. No one fools Google for long because it is a highly efficient search engine intent on delivering great value and ignoring bloggers who take shortcuts, like, attempting to copy content.

    Do your best each time out. Publish only original content to make the most seismic impact. If you cannot create something new just hold back, relax, and focus on other aspects of your blogging campaign.

    The tools seem helpful too; I’ve heard good things about Copyscape. I’ve also been deleting related posts from my blog if the relation is too close. This helps me to avoid any plagiarism concerns on Blogging From Paradise.



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