How to Fix “Duplicate, Google Chose Different Canonical Than User” Error?

How to fix duplicate google chose different canonical than user

The “Duplicate, Google Chose Different Canonical Than User” error message in Google Search Console indicates that Google has identified two or more pages on your website that have duplicate content, and Google has chosen a different canonical URL than the one you have specified. This error message occurs when Google has identified duplicate content on your website and has chosen a different canonical URL than the one you have specified. This can lead to your content not being indexed at all, or cause confusion for users who click on a link to your content only to find a different piece of content than they expected.

This can be problematic for 4 reasons:

  • When a site’s content is accessible via both HTTP and HTTPS, canonicals are set to the HTTP version, but Google favors HTTPS.
  • A website targets the US, UK, and other countries with identical content, relying solely on the hreflang link attribute.
  • It might lead to your content not being indexed at all. If Google can’t determine which version is the genuine one, it may choose not to include any of them in its search results.
  • It can confuse users who click on a link to your content only to discover a different piece of content than they expected.

What Google Say About This?

Here is the Official Google Search Console Documentation.

What Causes this Error?

The “Duplicate, Google Chose Different Canonical Than User” error in Google Search Console stems from two main causes:

  1. Conflicting Canonical Tags: You (the website owner) might have implemented canonical tags incorrectly. These tags point search engines to the preferred version of a set of similar pages. If the tags are missing, wrongly placed, or point to the wrong URL, Google might choose a different version as the canonical.
  2. Missing or Incorrect Tags: If you haven’t implemented canonical tags on the similar pages, Google might not have a clear signal on your preference for indexing.
  3. Misplaced Tags: The canonical tags might be placed on the wrong pages or have typos in the URLs, leading Google to misunderstand your preference.

How to Find Pages with the Duplicate, Google Chose Different Canonical than User Error?

In this section, I’ll show you the step-by-step process to find pages marked with this indexing status and show you how to fix this issue.

Open Google Search Console property and select your domain.

After select the domain follow these step these are show in screennshot.

After click on pages please scroll down and you see the lots of issues in GSC.

Click on the Mention Issue and investigate what is the problem with this reported URL.

This step is to determine which canonical URL Google has selected using the Inspect URL tool. You can find this information in the Indexing section at the bottom of the page.

In this section, you’ll see two lines:

  1. User-declared canonical.
  2. Google-selected canonical.

If Google has chosen a different URL from the one declared by the user, they will display that URL, as shown in the screenshot.

This guide is only for Find Pages with the Duplicate, Google Chose Different Canonical than User Error.

What’s Duplicate Google Chose Different Canonical than User Mean?

This message indicates that Google has detected two or more pieces of content on your website that are either the same or very similar. However, when Google decided on the main version of the content that should be indexed, it ended up selecting a different URL.

How to Fix “Duplicate Google Chose Different Canonical than User” Error?

Fortunately, there’s a simple solution for the “Duplicate Google choose different canonical than user” issue. Here are some steps you can follow:

  • After scrolling down, we see multiple issues, but we are only concerned with the issue that says “Duplicate, Google choose different canonical than user”.
  • Click on the “Duplicate, Google Choose Different Canonical than User” issue mentioned above.
  • Then, we click on the URL to open the report.
  • When the Google-selected canonical URL for a page is different from the user-selected canonical URL, then this issue is reported.
  • This means that Google is indexing the page using the Google-selected canonical URL, but we want to update the canonical URL to the correct one.
  • To do this, we go to the SEO settings for the page and edit the canonical URL in the Advanced section.
  • Click on this advanced section, will see the option to add a canonical here and we can add URL here which is indexed by Google from Google Selected or User Selected.
We can add URL here which is indexed by Google from Google Selected or User Selected.
  • Which was indexed on Google, We have selected it as a canonical. Now that canonical will also go to Google when Google crawls our page.

Add a 301 Redirect

  • Now, we add the 301 Redirection from User-selected canonical to the latest Google Selected Canonical URL. Because here is our Google Selected Canonical is index on Google, And google is understand both of our URLs (Google & User Selected Canonical is duplicate). Now we want only one URL index on google. So Google Selected Canonical is already index, so we added the redirection user selected canonical to google selected canonical. After doing this our issue is fixed Now.

Validation of Duplicate, Google Chose Different Canonical Than User:

If you follow the steps we have provided, you can resolve this reported issue in Google Search Console and also validate it. It should pass validation within a few days. Here is prove, I have started the validation after fixed.

Conclusion

In summary, fixing the “Duplicate, Google Choose Different Canonical than User Error” is vital for maintaining a strong online presence. By identifying duplicate content, setting preferred canonical URLs, and using redirects and tags, you can resolve this issue effectively. Remember that addressing duplicate content not only benefits your SEO but also enhances the user experience.

FAQs

How does Google choose a canonical URL?

Google determines the canonical URL based on factors like internal and external links, user signals, and the rel=”canonical” tag. However, you can influence this choice through various methods.

Can duplicate content harm my website’s SEO?

Yes, duplicate content can harm your website’s SEO. It confuses search engines, leading to lower rankings and reduced visibility in search results.

Is it essential to fix duplicate content errors?

Absolutely. Fixing duplicate content errors is crucial for maintaining a healthy SEO profile and improving user experience on your website.

What is the rel=”canonical” tag?

The rel=”canonical” tag is an HTML element that helps indicate the preferred URL to search engines. It’s a vital tool in resolving duplicate content issues.

How long does it take for changes to reflect in search results?

The time it takes for changes to appear in search results varies, but it can take several weeks or even months. Be patient and monitor your progress.

Are there SEO tools that can help with duplicate content issues?

Yes, there are several SEO tools like Screaming Frog, SEMrush, and Ahrefs that can assist in identifying and resolving duplicate content problems.

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