AI’s Influence on SEO: Opportunities & Challenges


The Gist

  • AI & SEO. AI is changing SEO, enhancing understanding of language and user queries.
  • Content concerns. Unregulated AI risks generating low-quality, misleading content for SEO.
  • Attribution issues. Authenticating AI’s data sources is crucial to maintain credible, informative content.

As Buster Poindexter would have once opined in the 80s: AI is hot … hot … hot! It seems you cannot read a headline or listen to a webcast that doesn’t tie AI somehow into the narrative. AI is going to take over the world; AI is going to doom humanity; AI is going to take everyone’s jobs; AI can code; and more of the like.

Yes, there is real concern over AI and the lack of regulations surrounding it now. And rightfully so, AI needs some guardrails around it and soon to ensure it is being used in a productive and unbiased capacity to make a positive impact on people’s lives.

But in the short-term, AI is making a real impact on business and consumers right now, and one of the areas it is making waves is within SEO and organic search. AI continues to have real value for benefitting SEO, as it provides a better understanding of natural language and more accurate responses to user queries.

While Google has been using AI and ML in some capacity to power search functionality since 2016, with the launch of ChatGPT the world is reignited with talk about AI and generative AI and how they will impact business and life in general.

Following are some of the ways that AI can beneficially impact your search and SEO strategy and tactics.

Related Article: Where Are Marketers on the Generative AI Adoption Curve?

Content Creation: Balancing Quality and Ethics

In February 2023 Google posted a blog called “Google Search’s guidance about AI-generated content” to establish rules and best practices around generative AI and the content it creates. Google has said it’s OK to use AI-assisted content creation, as long as AI is not used for illegal activities, abuse, misinformation, spam, and you know, sex. Funny how sex gets included with the illegal stuff. 

Google has a ranking system for content that is supposed to reward higher-quality content. Anyone reading content today on the web may question the veracity of this claim. Over the years smart marketers have learned how to game Google search results, like they have time and time again. 

The big concern with marketers using AI is they don’t use it to make better content, but to create tons of low-quality AI material intended to game the engines. If history is any guide, we should expect the latter.

But Google says that is a no-no. According to its blog, “When it comes to automatically generated content, our guidance has been consistent for years. Using automation — including AI — to generate content with the primary purpose of manipulating ranking in search results is a violation of our spam policies.”

And for marketers who think ChatGPT is production-ready to create a streamline of new SEO-friendly content, the reality is ChatGPT at this point is more of a hand-programmed demo than a system ready to execute on thoughtful content creation. ChatGPT, in order to seem so smart, had to be manually trained by humans with data, and it has only been trained up to 2021. You’ll need a plug-in to get anything beyond 2021, but this data isn’t baked into the model. Nothing post that date is included in ChatGPT results.

You simply cannot create thought-provoking, engaging material for consumers by only using content pre-2021. It is too out-of-date. 

Personalization and Relevance: How AI Fine-Tunes Search Results for Users

Since 2016 Google has been using AI algorithms to improve search results. AI algorithms allow search applications to understand user intent and behaviors more completely, analyzing data on search history, location and other user behaviors.

Gathering and analyzing such data allows companies to personalize search results better to target more defined customer segment audiences. Companies are also deploying AI-powered chatbots to help customers search for information, and then using that data and results to inform their SEO strategy.

Related Article: 10 Top Chatbot Providers You Should Know About in 2023

Staying Ahead With AI: Predictive Analytics for Future-Proof SEO Strategies

By using AI-enhanced predictive analytics solutions, whether stand-alone or integrated into other martech applications, organizations can better predict future trends and outcomes. These predictive analytics can inform content creation efforts and optimize SEO and content for user consumption.


Source link