What is SEO Cannibalization

SEO cannibalization is a term that refers to a situation where multiple pages on a website are competing against each other for the same keyword or search query. This can negatively impact the website's search engine rankings and overall visibility.

Understanding SEO Cannibalization

When a website has multiple pages targeting the same keyword, it creates confusion for search engines. Instead of ranking one page highly for that keyword, the search engine is forced to choose between multiple pages, resulting in a diluted ranking for each page.

This can lead to a decrease in organic traffic and conversions because search engines may not be able to identify the most relevant page to display in search results. Additionally, it can create a poor user experience as visitors may be directed to different pages with similar content.

Causes of SEO Cannibalization

SEO cannibalization can occur due to various reasons:

  • Keyword targeting: When different pages on a website are optimized for the same keyword, it can create competition.
  • Internal linking: Incorrect internal linking practices, such as linking to multiple pages with the same keyword anchor text, can confuse search engines.
  • Content duplication: Duplicate or similar content across multiple pages can confuse search engines and hinder proper indexing.

It's important to identify and address these causes to prevent SEO cannibalization and improve overall website performance.

Impact of SEO Cannibalization

SEO cannibalization can have several negative effects:

  • Lower rankings: When multiple pages compete for the same keyword, search engines may not prioritize any of them, leading to lower rankings.
  • Decreased organic traffic: With lower rankings, the visibility of the website decreases, resulting in a decline in organic traffic.
  • Confused users: If visitors are directed to different pages with similar content, it can lead to a confusing user experience and reduce engagement.

Addressing SEO cannibalization is crucial to ensure that your website's pages are optimized effectively and rank higher in search engine results.

Preventing SEO Cannibalization

To prevent SEO cannibalization, consider the following strategies:

  1. Keyword research: Conduct thorough keyword research to identify unique and relevant keywords for each page.
  2. Content optimization: Ensure that each page has unique and valuable content that targets specific keywords.
  3. Internal linking: Use strategic internal linking to guide search engines and users to the most relevant page for a specific keyword.
  4. Consolidate content: If you have multiple pages targeting the same keyword, consider consolidating them into one comprehensive page.

By implementing these strategies, you can prevent SEO cannibalization and improve your website's search engine rankings and visibility.


SEO cannibalization can hinder the performance of your website by diluting search engine rankings and confusing users. Understanding the causes and impact of SEO cannibalization is crucial in implementing effective prevention strategies. By optimizing your website's pages and avoiding keyword competition, you can improve your organic traffic and provide a better user experience.