The SEO landscape is changing vastly, and this is especially true when Artificial Intelligence enters the mix SEO could soon be governed by robots (well, kind of)! But since the internet has experienced huge growth since its inception, it means SEO is gradually shifting away from general optimisation practices into something a lot more detailed and sophisticated, that being Artificial Intelligence.
What is Artificial Intelligence (AI)?
Artificial Intelligence is a theory that man made technological systems and devices behave in a highly intelligent manner. Although the phrase Artificial Intelligence was first conceptualised during the 1950s, its notion goes as far back as the Ancient Greeks. Popular sci-fi films (think The Terminator and 2001: A Space Odyssey) alongside the growth of the internet meant its popularity soared; and this is a continual, growing trend thanks to the ever evolving technology that the 21st century has to offer.
The 3 Types of Artificial Intelligence
There are three types of AI, and these are:
Artificial Narrow Intelligence (ANI) – ANI is when AI only functions for one particular action, such as being programmed to triumph against a World Chess Champion.
Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) – AGI is when AI can do all intelligent things and is as human-like in its intelligence as possible.
Artificial Superintelligence (ASI) – ASI is when AI is superhuman, running at a level that is way beyond human capabilities.
How Does Artificial Intelligence Affect SEO?
Today you can find AI in Google’s RankBrain (you can read about RankBrain here) as well as Microsoft’s RankNet AI tool. And the tools purpose? To get to the root of understanding what users want to find. AI goes beyond just keywords.
AI is implemented through skilfull and efficient programming i.e. when search queries are analysed and the resulting clicks are measured, these data patterns are remembered and applied so that they create more dynamic search results. Put simply, AI (more specifically, ANI) and Google RankBrain give more in depth, relevant results that deviate away from conventional ranking factors.
However, there are still some unanswered questions about RankBrain today, with some people questioning whether RankBrain is a tool that operates against a set of search queries or whether it is a signal within the algorithm.
How Can Search Marketers Use Artificial Intelligence?
AI provides the perfect opportunity for search marketers to strive towards building a superior user experience that goes beyond the likes of optimising page titles and header tags.
Click Through Rates
It is widely believed that the click through rate on a search engine results page affects a site’s ranking; regardless whether this is the case or not, this is still something that should be SERP optimised. Additionally, there should be an effort made to create captivating meta descriptions and page titles.
Keyword optimisation is constantly subject to change, so switch the focus of one main keyword to focusing on what a user’s search needs are instead. The best keyword optimisation practices are using natural language to envelope the keywords when writing content, as well as using long tail keywords.
How Users Engage
RankBrain is able to analyse engagement metrics a lot more effectively, looking at conversion rates, bounce rates, average pages per visit amongst many other metrics. This means that you can pay attention to optimising the digital journey the user goes on when they’re on your website.
Why SEO Is Scared Of Artificial Intelligence
The only damage that AI can cause in SEO is making search marketers endeavour to only create the best content. All it requires is search marketers and SEO pros to adapt to focusing on understanding the user experience and adequately reaching the relevant users.
In the wider picture, AI will be a gradual process, with AGI being the most realistic advancement in foreseeable future. So, what does the AI SEO future hold? It is possible that AI will progress from a signal in an algorithm to replacing the algorithm altogether. The bottom line is that producing superb content that meets the users needs will ultimately triumph.