Let's say I'm building a programming tutorial/article website. Over time, versions of technology replace itself.

For example a service call with AngularJS is completely different in version 0.9.0 then in 1.0.0 --- so much so, that it warrants a completely different article.

I am tempted to use:


But fear the penalty for having a nearly identical title and URL. Remember, the content is completely different, but the subject is the same.

  • Do I have anything to worry about?
  • What is the best way to solve this problem?
  • 1
    This won't be an issue.
    – John Conde
    Dec 17, 2013 at 23:39
  • @JohnConde That's great news! Could you go into a little more detail about this?
    – Dan Kanze
    Dec 17, 2013 at 23:42
  • Having similar URLs and titles is ok. Especially if there are so few and the content is completely different.
    – John Conde
    Dec 17, 2013 at 23:48

2 Answers 2


Do I have anything to worry about?

In terms of a penalty, no. You would only be penalized for black hat techniques, such as those listed by Google in its Quality guidelines.

Sites can be expected to have similar content such as titles that differ slightly, and URLs are not a factor since by necessity they would differ.

What is the best way to solve this problem?

Signup for Google Webmaster Tools, if you haven't already, and go to: Search Appearance -> HTML Improvements. As covered here, that will indicate if you have:

Title problems: Potential problems with the title tag on your pages, such as missing or repeated page titles.

If you do, you can elect to do one of the three options outlined in my answer here.

Lastly, it's important to note that duplicate content does not automatically result in penalties unless it's an attempt to manipulate search engine results or deceive users. As covered here, if Google finds duplicate content that's not malicious or deceptive, it will just index the pages which it thinks contains the most beneficial content for users.


As John Conde mentioned in his comment, having similar URLs and Titles is ok. Especially if there are so few and the content is completely different and so it won't create a duplicate page or content issue. In your case you are having nearly identical URL and title with different contents so you don't need to consider this as an issue.

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