Guest post by Mike Khorev, SEO expert and digital marketing consultant.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) has been the major buzzword in the digital marketing world for the past few years, mainly due to the rapid advancements in machine learning technologies.
AI is now a relatively familiar idea among marketers, and it’s no longer a sci-fi term associated with the distant future. This is also true in the field of SEO.
Machine learning technologies have now become a very important component of search engine algorithms. Meaning, if we can understand AI and how it can help SEO, we can further improve our SEO results.
Here, we will discuss the current effects of AI implementations in the search engine algorithms and how we can use Artificial Intelligence in SEO to improve our performance.
1. AI In Search Engine Algorithm
Although it’s fairly unknown for SEO marketers, artificial intelligence is actually used in a wide range of applications to improve Google’s and other search engines’ algorithms. Here are some of the notable examples:
1. Search Query Recognition for Text and Voice Searches
Google and the other search engines are getting smarter in recognizing search queries according to the user’s search intent and overall context–especially for long-tail keywords—. This is made possible with the use of artificial intelligence.
The search engines utilize AI and machine learning technologies to process search queries, predict which results can satisfy the user’s search intent, and then collect and analyze how users react to these search results to further improve upon it.
Google’s Rankbrain, for example, is Google’s AI-based search engine algorithm that can analyze various user experience metrics like dwell time and bounce rate to determine SERP ranking. For instance, when a site already ranks #1 for a certain keyword but has a high bounce rate, it’s a strong sign that the site isn’t a relevant fit for the keyword, and so it might be demoted if not banned.
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2. Local Search Results
More and more people are using Google Maps and other geolocation-based apps to find local businesses. Also, with the rise of voice searches, more people are using “near me” queries (i.e. “restaurants near me”) which are going to be tied to Google Maps results.
Again, Google and the other search engines are using AI technologies to make sure businesses show up accurately in search results across many different locations of both the searchers and the search locations—in real-time—.
3. Understanding Context Between Content Pieces
Google’s mission, according to its own words, is to deliver the most relevant and reliable information for its human readers. Various optimizations tied to SEO are, in their purest forms, telling Google that “hey, our content is relevant for this keyword, pick us!” There are, however, cases when a website is perceived as relevant by Google but not actually relevant content for the users.
With AI technologies, however, Google and the other search engines can now properly understand the context of a content piece and between different content pieces. For example, when a website that frequently publishes posts about digital marketing published a post about SEO, Google can understand the case and this new content will get a boost in the SERP.
2. Utilizing AI To Assist Content Creation
There are now over a billion blogs on the internet and millions of new content are being published virtually every single day.
As a result of this, there are now over 3.5 billion search queries being made on Google every day, 15% of them are totally brand new. That is obviously a lot.
With that being said, delivering a totally unique and high-quality content is obviously very important, and here are some ways how we can do it at the moment:
- AI can help with the research and curation process, which is often the most time-consuming part of content development. Buzzsumo, for example, is a very popular tool that can help in this aspect.
- Various AI technologies and marketing bots can be used to perform market research: collecting and analyzing data from our audience so we can understand what kinds of content will cater to them.
- AI tools can help to automatically optimize the content according to many different aspects. For example, Grammarly is an AI-based tool that can automatically detect grammar and typing mistakes which can help in content creation.
In short, we can (and should) use various available AI tools to develop better, more relevant, and more optimized content pieces. AI technologies can help us gather and analyze the data we need to create a better SEO content strategy around the best platforms for your content.
3. AI To Achieve Hyperpersonalization
The most ideal form of content marketing is when we can develop a 100% custom-tailored content for each individual audience.
Obviously, that is very difficult if not impossible to achieve, and this is where AI technologies can help bridge that gap.
Various AI implementations and marketing bots have allowed more ways to implement automation-based marketing where we can automatically send personalized (or at least semi-personalized) marketing messages to individual users.
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The basic idea here is that AI can allow a more accurate and time-efficient way to collect and analyze data from our audience (i.e., site visitors), and can use the data to create personalized content according to the audience’s exact needs. This will allow us to improve user experience and can keep our audience on our site longer.
We can, for instance, use AI technologies to provide:
- Custom-tailored landing pages
- Dynamic content based on the audience’s actions
- Unique user experiences that are tailored to the specific audience’s data
Indirectly, we can also use the same data to develop better, more relevant content as discussed in the previous point.
Google and the other search engines will continue to evolve with one goal: to deliver more relevant and reliable content for its human audience. However, the audience itself is also evolving to expect even more: a piece of content that is relevant and attractive 5 years ago might not be attractive today.
This is why the search engines are using AI to better match audience’s search intent and to improve overall user experience, and on the other hand, SEO marketers can also take advantage of various AI implementations and solutions that can help improve the site’s SEO performance.
Mike Khorev is an SEO expert and digital marketing consultant who helps small and mid-size businesses generate more leads, sales and grow revenue online. He offers expert advice on marketing your company the right way through performance-based SEO digital marketing, web design, social media, search engine marketing and many other online practices. Find him on LinkedIn and Twitter