SEO in the Age of Generative AI

SEO in the Age of Generative AI

Updated 19th Jun '23

Will the SEO as we know it become obsolete

AI is causing more and more disruption on the Internet. Gradually (and for some, very quickly), it's changing the way we use the Internet, work, search for information, or find answers to questions.

In our opinion, the introduction of ChatGPT, followed by Google with their subsequent AI products, of which SGE is probably the most notable currently, is one of the turning points in the history of the Internet.

  1. The first was the creation of websites and then their graphic browsers.
  2. The second was the emergence of content search engines on the Internet and the subsequent creation of Google.
  3. The next was the so-called Web 2.0, where every user received tools for easily adding their own content to the Internet.
  4. The current one is the emergence of AI, which can search for information on the Internet for us.

OpenAI GPT-4, along with plugins, is a tool that allows us to quickly find the information we need on the web. This is what Google was a few years ago, which is why it made such a splash. It simply gave us quick access to what we needed at any given moment.

The current Internet and the excess of "SEO content" has meant that we again need to spend a relatively large amount of time, even using Google, to find what we need.

First, we type in what we're looking for, then we browse the results and choose which of the pages might contain the answer to our question. Then we have to wade through an excess of irrelevant text, which was created for bots and not for us, to finally find that one sentence we were interested in.

As one of the first, the "new wave" was felt by the popular among programmers service "StackOverflow". In March alone, traffic on the site fell by 14%, even though StackOverflow didn't really have content created for bots. Simply using ChatGPT or Github Copilot is faster and more convenient. The latter, in particular, deserves attention, as it is one of many plugins already utilizing AI.

ChatGPT Plugins

ChatGPT or GPT-4 are great tools with a vast database. A lot of questions can get an instant answer thanks to this. However, not all, especially those concerning the latest events, changes, projects, or products.

The limitation of using "outdated" data, with the advent of plugins for GPT-4, has ceased to exist. The built-in GPT-4 "browsing" plugin allows AI to search for information on the Internet itself. Now, instead of you, the AI will use the search engine, click on the most relevant links, read the content of the page, and search through the clutter of text for that one piece of information you need.

The "browsing" plugin, although very powerful, is not the only plugin available in GPT-4. OpenAI has laid the groundwork for its own App Store, where any developer will be able to post their plugins. This has huge implications and in our opinion, it will change the Internet as we know it and significantly impact SEO methods. In the near future, having your plugin in GPT-4 may be as important as having your own website. Many companies have already sensed the upcoming changes and have started posting their plugins in OpenAI.

Good examples might be real estate companies like Zillow or Redfin. Retail-related companies also see the upcoming trend, which is why in the OpenAI Store you will also find companies like InstaCart. Also, companies such as Kayak, Expedia, or Opentable have posted their plugins.

It's not hard to imagine that in the near future this is how we will search for information on the Internet and make our purchases.

If you're considering adding your business to OpenAI GPT-4, you might be interested in our offer of creating plugins for GPT-4.

Bing Search Chat Plugins

GPT-4 plugins will soon appear in Microsoft's Bing search engine. If this idea is successful, not only could Bing gain substantial popularity, but Google may also introduce a similar solution. GPT-4-like plugins are definitely something to observe in terms of their impact on how we use internet search engines.

Google SGE

Google is feeling the heat and, not wanting to lose its dominant position in internet search, is also charging full speed ahead into AI for search.

The recently announced Google SGE, which we've had the opportunity to test, could revolutionize internet search and invert the current significance of SEO. If the trend goes in the direction Google seems to be heading, the user will first see an answer to their query generated by Generative AI, which will take up a large portion of the viewport. Below this will be sponsored links from Google, and only far below the first view will there be links from 'traditional' SEO.

At this time, it is unclear how one can prepare for this and on what basis the content and top three links will be generated. It appears that our location plays a significant role. Google has also not yet announced plugins like Bing/OpenAI has done. However, it is not out of the question that Google may follow this route too, so it might be worth considering creating your own AI plugin, as it could prove very helpful in the future.