Search engine optimization (SEO) is a process that improves web traffic to a website from search engines. It is a vital resource for modern businesses to gain leads and convert those leads into sales. Many businesses have already optimized their websites to be more discoverable online. However, with the rise of AI-generated content, businesses must reconsider the relationship between this content and SEO. In this article, we examine what impact, if any, AI-generated content has on SEO and provide tips on how to get the best results from AI generators.
What Is AI-Generated Content?
AI-generated content is any content that is created by artificial intelligence (AI). Some of the most popular AI-related apps are ChatGPT and Jasper AI. Using a prompt from a human user, these apps scan the internet for relevant information and convert it into text that can be transferred to any other platform in minutes. Naturally, businesses have leaped on this opportunity to create more content, faster and more cost-efficiently. But is this a good idea, and will it ultimately impact your bottom line?
The Google Debate
In 2022, businesses that relied (however much) on AI generators to help them create content were thrown into chaos when Google’s Search Advocate, John Mueller, announced that AI-generated content was considered spam and was against their guidelines. This meant that, rather than helping their SEO efforts, AI-generated content would harm businesses’ marketing efforts. But, as Search Engine Journal pointed out, many businesses were using AI-generated content for SEO without an issue.
A year later, Google revised its stance on businesses using AI-generated content. Their issue, they said, was with businesses using AI solely to rank higher in the search engine without any consideration given to the quality of the work they are producing. But, if businesses were using AI to create relevant, useful content, Google had no issue with AI generators being involved and would not penalize a company for using these apps.
So, with this in mind, is AI-generated content good for SEO, or should you avoid it?
What Works in Your Favor?
Consistency is fundamental to most things in life, but it is especially important in ranking up in the search engine results pages. BKA Content recommends two ways to remain consistent: post frequently and post content that is relevant to your brand. How often you post will largely depend on what content you are creating and what you want to achieve, so you might need to play around with this to get the right balance. You also want to make sure that your content makes sense for your business and that your potential customers will find it useful. Read our blog post for help creating a consistent brand online. Using AI generators to produce content can help you create more content more frequently, which will boost your ranking in search engines.
AI content generators are great at highlighting trending keywords for a given topic. SEO uses keywords to explain to readers at a glance what a given topic is about and makes that content more discoverable when people are searching for it. Content creators spend a considerable amount of time researching keywords (a vital step in online content marketing), but AI generators can produce these keywords in minutes. Indeed, one site, Rytr, allows users to paste an article into its system, and it picks out the keywords for that article. Being able to use relevant keywords, whether they are generated by AI or not, is essential for SEO.
What Works Against You?
AI content generators may seem like the ideal solution to the challenges of content creation, but you should remember that these tools are still in their infancy and, thus, still have their flaws. For example, AI often promotes false or inaccurate information. According to Ayima, one AI content generator provided false information about which telescope took the first pictures of a planet outside our solar system, leading to the sharp decline of the chatbot’s parent company’s stock. This is a relatively minor error, but it does highlight the potential for AI content generators to get things wrong, and this could have a massive impact on your reputation.
We must also remember that these are machines that are not capable of the same range of emotion as humans (at least not yet). They cannot understand or produce irony, humor, or sarcasm. And that’s why the writing they create feels very surface level. This isn’t ideal for businesses that need to appeal to the emotions of their customers, such as by sales copy. Sales copy relies on stories that hit customers’ pain points and offer suggestions. As Square Media points out, storytelling and copywriting are very human, and they need a human touch. AI just can’t replicate emotion.
How To Use AI-Generated Content for SEO
Whether you use AI generators or not is entirely up to you. However, if you do decide to use them, here are some tips to get the best outcome.
- Allow AI to highlight trending keywords in your industry. Then, use these keywords to optimize your SEO and create content that focuses on them.
- Use AI generators to create outlines from which your writers can work. This mitigates the issues that arise when AI creates content from start to finish, while also speeding up the content production process.
- Edit and proofread your work before you post. If you do decide to use AI generators to write posts for you, make sure you thoroughly check the piece for accuracy and grammatical errors before you publish. You can find a blog on editing and proofreading AI-generated content here.
We believe that AI generators should be used as a tool in your content creation process, but you should not rely on them to create content from start to finish.
So, is AI-generated content good for SEO? The answer really is “it depends.” If you have AI create your content from scratch and don’t check it, you will likely not see the returns you had hoped for. This is because Google penalizes content that is produced just to rise in the search rankings without any regard to its value. You also run the risk of promoting misleading or inaccurate content. If you do this, then yes, AI-generated content will negatively affect your SEO. However, if you use AI content generators as a tool to help you create valuable content, then it will likely benefit you. Making sure that you fact-check and conduct a thorough proofread will boost your SEO, so you will see your website rise through the rankings.
At Proofed, we know how hard it is to create top-quality content consistently. That’s why we have put together our a complete guide for using generative AI tools to supercharge your writing.