What Is Keyword Cannibalization?

What Is Keyword Cannibalization?

When you look up the definition of cannibalization in the dictionary, you’ll find that it comes from the word cannibal. Although the term cannibalism is most commonly identified with humans, it has a similar meaning when combined with keywords. Keyword cannibalization is an SEO issue that occurs when a search is directed to more than one page, causing the page displayed in the search results to change on a regular basis. To put it another way, a site may be targeting the same keyword on more than one page or post without realizing it. This could be due to content or a technical issue.

An unusual situation in search traffic occurs as a result of keywords defeating each other. In fact, Google works to eliminate this issue. For example, while you can create different pages for different keywords related to each other, Google now recognizes this and can identify that these keywords and pages are similar. In the opposite case, keyword cannibalization occurs. So in this article, you will understand what keyword cannibalization is and how to identify it.

Identifying Keyword Cannibalization

The term cannibalization refers to unintentional cannibalization. What exactly does this mean? You own a website and want to improve SEO and rank high on Google or other search engines. You can generate a large number of keywords and use them to create content. As an outcome, your site will become extremely popular in clicks and visits. What you must avoid here is unintentionally assigning extra content, posts, or pages to a keyword. This is called keyword cannibalization. If there is keyword cannibalization on your page, your click-through rate will be divided into several sections and come from various pages. This is not good for SEO but you don’t need to worry. There are many tools that can detect and protect you from it.

google search console

Identifying cannibalization is a simple task. You may detect this issue on your own, either for free or with the assistance of certain paid tools. Or, you can use Google Search Console to check. Also, you can check the keyword by specifying a date range in the query section and using the full query option. This way, you can discover the traffic on the days that you believe are volatile. You must conduct your research on a single page. If your keyword isn’t on a single page and has different densities on different pages, you can easily conclude that there is keyword cannibalization.

On the other hand, if you don’t want to do it yourself, there are paid tools available. These will warn you if you have been subjected to keyword cannibalization. For example, you can use SEOmonitor or Ahrefs.

How to Fix Keyword Cannibalization

As we mentioned earlier, there are numerous reasons for keyword cannibalization. These may be because of content or technical issues. There are methods for quickly resolving problems once you identify them. If you have a technical issue, for example, your two different keywords appear on two different pages. We call it an internal cannibalization problem. You’ll need to do a site merge for this, and you can use the 301 status code router. It would be best if you did it with the stronger one with a higher ranking ratio, as this will solve your problem and prevent you from losing the information and values in the two links.
On the other hand, the issue could be related to the content. For example, if you have a weak site, Google may lower your ranking rate. You can avoid this problem by selecting the right keywords, writing the SEO content correctly and appropriately, or employing an SEO content producer. Aside from these, a variety of issues may arise. But keep in mind that, first and foremost, it is necessary to determine whether content or a technical issue is the cause to solve the problem.


We have gone over what keyword cannibalization is and how to recognize and fix it shortly in this post. To summarize, keyword cannibalization is a negative thing. Because it competes with competitor pages as well as within itself, your content will have a negative impact on your ranking.

Frequently Asked Questions

Keyword cannibalization occurs when your keyword gets split across multiple posts, which goes against SEO compliance.

There are certain ways you can fix keyword cannibalization. You can review your website and your content. You can get new keywords and create new pages. You can also use 301 redirect.

This will affect your ranking rates because it creates competition among your own pages. Seeing the rates of your pages decreasing will be tragic for you.

In SEO, keyword cannibalization means that the content on your website competes with each other because of the keyword. This means that the content you want to prioritize does not stand out in SEO.

It occurs when your website eats itself during a search. Your own content is in direct competition with one another.

Margrit Aksu

Posts: 50

As a graduate of the English Literature department, Margrit Aksu has been very passionate about the English language. Writing, creating, and editing articles have become her passion as she dives into the depths of it. So, she's been an SEO Content Editor at Dopinger digital marketing agency since ... Read More

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