The Impact of Ai Systems on SEO

ai systems seo

This is not an article about how to utilise the various Ai programmes as part of your SEO repertoire, nor is it about whether it is good or bad to utilise, or how to utilise it for best output. This is my opinion on a question that has surfaced a few times over the last two weeks from various clients starting to dabble in Ai generators and chat systems.

The question:

Will Ai programmes be considered as a new search engine – and how do we rank?

Where did this question stem from?

There were two different scenarios. The parties in question respectively stumbled on this from different angles, but essentially were asking the same question, more or less.

One runs MS365 which recently made Microsoft CoPilot available for free for MS365 clients for a limited time before it will be a charged for feature. They tried out CoPilot and were shocked when their site did not appear in the query they had entered.

The other scenario is someone who uses Ai programmes extensively already, but wanted to know if they will spawn new SEO agencies who specialise in ranking websites or citations on Ai.

Both excellent questions and I love that I have clients that are excited about new tech.

The State of Ai and SEO

Here is my feedback in no particular order.

TL/DR in future, possibly maybe. But here is my hesitancy in what that will bring us, if we don’t start changing our ways now.

  1. Ai Data May Be Out of Date – Ai systems are not 100% up to date with latest content on the web. Chat GPT was using data up till 2021 until very recently. After which it was meant to open up it’s data source to be able to search for data to the current date. But a lot of the info is only up and until 2021, depending whether it has crawled the rest, or how you prompt, or whether you have a paid subscription.
  2. Uses Past Behaviour – Chat GPT and any other Ai Chat system to prompt for info – is a self-fulfilling prophecy. CoPilot uses it’s own search engine (bing) which it itself isn’t great results as is – but it has stated publicly that it is a walled garden of sorts. If you haven’t set your location in the settings when using it, it will automatically use USA results only. Also it uses your own search history from Bing to serve you information based on your search and browsing preferences. Open Ai is a little more broad in results (you can also set the preferred SE), but it does also use Google as its primary source of data – however, the algo to an extent does the same thing as CoPilot, but the extent to which it serves you your history, or what % that factor plays, I’m not 100% sure of as it changes based on the operator you’re using.
  3. Self-fulfilling – The content you search for (especially when looking for content about your own company as one example) is also a self-fulfilling prophecy as you’re going to be searching words that you’re familiar with and/or use a lot – that will trigger your site. No matter how well it is optimised – SEOs usually would use words your target audience uses, but many clients still insist on using words that they use internally and/or their demographic won’t really be in the know about – so you can see where that goes. If you use those words, your own site will come up, naturally…
  4. Algo’s recognizing Ai Content – Recently YouTube have started incorporating an additional check in the upload process whereby you have to state whether you’ve used Ai content or Ai animated figures present so they’re accounting for that. Image processing is the most difficult thing to recognise in machine learning,  so you can be sure that they’re using that in the SERP algo too – even if to a lesser extent. Duplicate content has always been part of the algo in Google – and unfortunately what most of the content generators do is take info from the same sources (pending on your prompts and how well you guide the system), but the chances of there being more duplicate content compared to a human person writing the content, is higher – although many copywriters out there do like to plagiarise even before Ai content generators…so there’s that.. So sometimes many writers using the Ai content for their articles or websites will more than likely not rewrite the content and then the chances are higher for duplication.  So this in itself is a problem – outdated content being produced without some people checking for facts – eventually we are going to have terrible results on search engines one day when the Ai source catches up to the data layers on the web.  The scarier question is whether the information will even be correct?

So I think there is a fair way to go, and those that are using the platforms really do need to use their brains and not accept the information as gospel. Will it eventually get better? Yes, but ONLY IF people start using their brains and not keep producing garbage, un-fact-checked content – because the repercussions of that will mean garbage results whether you’re using Search Engine or Ai chat systems to bring the content to you. Eventually it will be like an ouroboros – content produced by Ai, eventually becoming content ranked on Search engines, becoming the “facts” you’re getting in your chat prompt…

See where that’s going?

Should We Stop Using Ai Content Generators or Chat Systems for Answers?

I encourage copywriters that I work with to use Ai chat programmes and systems to create content outlines. When you’re continuously writing  about the same topic you can run out of ideas – and for that Ai chat systems are really great – IF you know how to prompt it correctly for the information you’re seeking AND with the understanding that it will not have the latest information. So it is super important to not only fact-check your content, but also produce bespoke content – not copy-paste from the system.

For the everyman I encourage everyone to understand the limitations of the system you’re using and also take a course in chat prompts and how to get the best out of your particular system.

Is there room for Ai SEO agencies who can help you rank in Ai Systems?

Yes. They exist already. They’re your everyday SEO 😉

A good SEO should be able to guide you through not only producing well thought out web-copy and content, but content targeted correctly to your audience and that will rank. If it ranks on SEs, it will rank in the Ai systems – eventually.




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