Use Google Webmaster Tools to Avoid Duplicate Content

In the General Guidelines for Google Webmaster Tools, Google advises that there are steps you can take to proactively address duplicate content issues and avoid receiving a duplicate content penalty. One such step is:

  • Use Webmaster Tools to tell us how you prefer your site to be indexed: You can tell Google your preferred domain (for example, or

I recently set this up for my Abipo domain name and I had the choice of either:

  • Display URLs as
  • Display URLs as

Google Webmaster Tools

As I have always preferred the www prefix,  I chose the former: “Display URLs as” . However, upon choosing this option, I received an error:

Part of the process of setting a preferred domain is to verify that you own  Please verify

As I had already uploaded a Google generated HTML file to the root directory of my Abipo web server I was thinking my sites WERE verified. I wondered why Google was asking to verify when it has already been done. Did I need to reverify?

The answer was I needed to verify the domain AS WELL as the domain name. This was done by visiting the Home Page of Google Webmaster Tools and clicking on “Add a site….”. After I did that, I was able to go back and specify as my preferred domain for indexing.

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2 replies
  1. Guitar-Online
    Guitar-Online says:


    You can also add a few lines to your .htaccess file and it will work for every search engine.

    Here is the code:
    ### code ###
    RewriteEngine On
    RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} !^www\.
    RewriteRule ^(.*)$ http://www.%{HTTP_HOST}/$1 [R=301,L]
    ### end of code ###

    This code will have all you queries redirected to

    Have a nice day,
    Guitar-Online recently posted..How to play the Guitar: Volume two for beginners to intermediate level – 5.5My Profile

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