Google and Bing are fast-tracking changes to their search engines with generative AI algorithms that redefine how content and websites are discovered, ranked, and displayed in both organic and paid search.
This article covers the current state of SEO and AI in 2023, looking at how it is revolutionising search and the changes we can expect in 2024.
A search revolution
The AI revolution in search engine technology is driven by the ability of AI to process and analyse vast amounts of data with unprecedented speed and accuracy.
AI algorithms understand user intent, context, and preferences, enabling search engines to deliver highly relevant and personalised search results.
But here’s the crux – you must also use AI to keep pace with these changing algorithms.
Simply put, fighting fire with fire is the only way to compete in the AI search era. You need AI if you want to continue competing in search.
What even is AI?
AI is a computer algorithm that uses neural networks known as artificial neural networks (ANNs) to perform tasks. It can analyse big data, learn from patterns, and replicate human abilities like reasoning and problem-solving.
The ability of AI to replicate specific human abilities like reasoning and problem-solving is a fundamental goal in the field. While AI systems cannot fully replicate human cognition (for now), they can perform specific tasks or domains at a level comparable to or exceeding human capabilities, and this is where tools come in.
AI tools include software and systems that leverage artificial intelligence algorithms (proprietary or via API) to perform tasks. The SEO industry is now seeing a revolution in AI tools that will change the SEO game forever.
“Skate to where the puck is going to be…”
This quote from hockey legend Wayne Gretzky captures the essence of using AI in the SEO industry. To stay ahead in the AI search era, we must anticipate search engines’ direction and align our strategies accordingly.
So, where is the puck skating?
The direction is clear – we are heading towards a full-blown AI search experience where search results are generative, not results-based. Popularity will shift away from traditional webpages in favour of content within AI-powered sources such as Google and Bing.
Google and Bing are already integrating generative AI into their search engines. This AI populates search results with personalised content using neural networks – filled with data – to identify search intent patterns and generate results.
This is different from rule-based algorithms because generative AI can analyse and understand data in a more human-like way thanks to natural language processing, letting it interpret the meaning behind search queries.
With this information, search engines can provide precise results that better match user intent, even when the query is conversational or complex.
This extends to images, videos, voice search, pay-per-click, and intelligent virtual assistants, leaving no stone unturned.
AI in search – how AI is revolutionising the SEO industry
AI-powered algorithms, particularly generative AI, have significantly improved the quality and relevance of search results with personalised content.
For SEO managers and businesses, AI will change the way we approach marketing and promoting websites. Keyword research, competitor analysis, on-site optimisation, citation and link building, and analytics will evolve with AI.
Personalised search results
AI algorithms can analyse search intent, user behaviour, preferences, and historical data to deliver highly personalised search results.
For instance, Bing can now deliver a conversational chat dialogue in search, providing you with personalised real-time content separate from search listings.
AI chatbots can deliver search results that are personalised to the end user, giving them a more relevant search experience.
By understanding search intent and user preferences, search engines can provide tailored recommendations, enhancing the user experience and increasing engagement.
This works both ways – you must also use AI to understand user intent and context to produce content worthy of ranking.
Web analytics provides valuable insights into how visitors interact with your website and app. By analysing traffic sources, user demographics, pages, and conversion rates, we can make informed decisions to optimise your website for better SEO.
Reviewing analytics data is traditionally manual, but AI is changing the game with relevant suggestions, automated reporting, and new analysis.
For example, Google Analytics has a brilliant feature called Analytics Intelligence, which lets you ask questions about your audience and get immediate answers. It can also create goals, assess conversion probability, and monitor session quality.
GA4 goes further with an AI-driven feature in its latest version, the Insights panel, which can detect potential opportunities other data sources may miss.
AI-assisted content creation
2023 has seen an explosion in the number of AI copywriting tools available, including Anyword and Jasper. Many of these tools have their roots in open-source projects such as OpenAI, where advanced algorithms are trained using a variety of prompts.
These writing assistants utilise natural language processing (NLP) and machine learning to generate high-quality written content. They can learn patterns, mimic human writing styles, and produce coherent, engaging text.
AI content creation can also improve human writing. Some tools, such as Grammarly, improve readability, relevance, and SEO performance. These tools can analyse existing content, suggest relevant keywords, and generate new content that aligns with search engine trends and user preferences.
AI website optimisation
Website optimisation (or on-page SEO) is critical to any search strategy, but it traditionally requires a human to complete. AI is changing the game with tools that can optimise webpages and posts based on seed keywords.
One such tool is Alli AI, which has a Bulk Optimisation feature that automates the optimisation of an entire website from a single, unified page.
It also has a live editor tool that edits text, content and code based on the selected focus keyword and A/B testing for increasing organic traffic.
AI customer segmentation
AI can enhance the segmentation and targeting of your audience with accuracy. Peak.ai, for instance, provides customers with over thirty-five attributes for analysis, making segmentation with actionable data an attainable goal.
Optimove offers a dynamic segmentation approach – assessing consumer habits and crafting tailored micro-segments with the slightest variance.
This status-quo updating approach offers increased relevance and higher conversion rates with personalised content. AI customer segmentation tools will help you dive deep into the wants and needs of your audience to produce quality content.
AI-enhanced multimedia search
One search on Google and Bing proves that AI will transform the search experience for images, videos, and other multimedia content.
With AI’s ability to analyse visual and auditory data, search engines can identify objects, scenes, faces, and emotions within images and videos.
Bing uses AI to dynamically deliver images, videos, and answers in search, moving away from text-only search to create richer experiences.
This enables more accurate indexing and retrieval of multimedia content, providing users with exciting and relevant search results.
Real-time search updates
The most impressive thing about AI is its ability to learn from new data, enabling search engines to provide real-time updates and fresher search results.
AI algorithms analyse the newly collected data in real time. Natural language processing techniques are used to understand the context, sentiment, and relevance of the data, and based on the analysis, the search engine updates its index.
Real-time updates benefit time-sensitive queries, news topics, and rapidly evolving industries.
Content creators and publishers who want to leverage real-time search updates must keep up with current affairs and industry trends. For this, we expect to see the integration of AI scrapers to collect data and AI writing tools to create the content.
If you enjoyed this article, read our piece on the best AI SEO tools.
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