Urls go like


but I also have filter page in place that lets you do this

domain/approved/education-entertainment-business/kids/female and so on

which means list all female kids articles no matter what Level1 category they fall in.

But that also means that




list exactly the same content (assuming level2 only has 3 categories - kids, teenager and adult). How to handle duplicacy in this case for the sake of canonical url and so on.

Also, my sitemaps should not worry about filtering URLs (the ones with dashes), right?

2 Answers 2

  • If you have the same content being pulled up by multiple URLs you will need to use canonical URLs so search engines will know which URL is the primary URL for that content

  • You should only list the primary URL in your XML sitemap as listing all of the duplicate URLs will not benefit you since you know only the primary URL will be listed in the search results anyway


By default, Google will interpret the URLs listed in your sitemap as canonical.

However, Google suggests adding the rel=canonical link element into the head of each document that points to preferred version of the content. If it is not possible to add the rel=canonical markup to the document, e.g. PDF, the recommendation is to append a Link: in the HTTP headers.

LINK Element Syntax Example:

<link rel="canonical" href="http://www.example.com/product"/>  

HTTP Header Syntax Example:

Link: http://www.example.com/product; rel="canonical"

Therefore in the specific examples from your question, I suggest choosing the top most level as the canonical version and adding a link element to the head in all other versions that point back to the top.

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