If you read a newspaper and that newspaper had a large chunk of duplicate content on each page of the newspaper, would you consider that newspaper valuable?
The more duplicate content you publish on your site the more you run the risk of the automatic filters. More importantly you run the risk of scaring away users and potential link partners who may not see the value of your site.
but ecommerce isn't a newspaper. not even close. newspapers include content which is informative or interesting for readers. ecommerce sites sell products.
if i have a product page for large aluminum green fuzzy widgets, and another for large aluminum green smooth widgets, they are likely to share lots of dup info. - like the manufacturer name and the dimensions and a description of the use etc. - the different content is likely to be only the product id, upc, price and info about the texture (smooth vs fuzzy).
on my sites, user data has proved time and again that dup content - at least as described above - is good. customers want to see all of the info about a product and a manufacturer on the product page - lots of this will dup - its ok because they don't browse that way and the info is highly relevant to their purchase.
thankfully google gets this - yes, there are dup content filters, but i think they are trumped by user data. if your users like your site, google will like your site - more and more i think that is where search and seo are headed.
Exactly. It might be considered a brochure/catalog though.
Imagine you were producing a glossy brochure selling widgets. Each widget is a distinctive shape or size but all use the same wodget to power them. Would you describe the benefits, power, and near silent running of the wodget on each product page?
The alternative would be...This is a much sought after triangular widget, driven by a high powered wodget "for full wodget information - see page 98" or "click here" (ecommerce)