Search engine optimization, or SEO, has changed significantly in the past few years. Thanks to the power of machine learning and artificial intelligence, the only way to build a sustainable, long-term SEO strategy is to create content people want to share. To combat these new trends, we need to employ our own machine learning technology to find what works and perform modern SEO at scale.
In this post, we’ll look at step 6: prediction.
Predicting Search Volume
By this point in the SEO process, we understand with great detail what our audience is likely searching for. However, we don’t yet have a clear idea of when that search volume is likely to peak.
Recall that search engines like Google evaluate content for search rankings based on three broad factors:
- Relevance: is the content relevant to the query?
- Diversity: is the content diverse, in the sense of a mix of media?
- Freshness: is the content timely?
If our content hits all three factors, we are likely to do better in search engine rankings.
Suppose we were to know when our audience’s interest in a topic was at its highest. What would we do differently? For one, we’d publish more content at peak interest times, so as to take advantage of relevance and freshness.
If only we had a data source which could evaluate a key search term and give us a sense of timing…
… like Google Trends!
The Trend Is Your Friend
As I’ve written previously, ARIMA-based predictions are generally considered to be robust, fault-tolerant predictions of the future based on seasonal and cyclical trends. Few things are as cyclical and seasonal as search volume, because what people type into search engines is whatever’s on their minds in the moment.
Using R and Google Trends data, let’s project forward our robotic process automation term:
We see a number of peaks and valleys in the plot, indicating times when search interest ebbs and flows.
Based on this information, we know what weeks of the year to focus our efforts on creating, optimizing, and pitching our relevant content to maximize our freshness in the eyes of search engines.
Knowing this, we’re now ready to construct some new content. Stay tuned!
The AI-Powered SEO Process
- Step 1: Inventory – understand what we have and how it performs.
- Step 2: Enrich – building off what we have, see what else is out there
- Step 3: Validate and Select – check that we’re working towards high-volume topics, make choices from the topic buffet of what to pursue
- Step 4: Extract – determine what else makes the top performing pages work so well from a content and topic perspective
- Step 5: Predict – understand the seasonality of our chosen topic
- Step 6: Construct – improve or create new content for our chosen topic
- Step 7: Associate – explore Key Opinion Leaders (KOL) who are influential in our topic’s space
- Step 8: Distill & Reach Out – understand what sites our KOLs share and their search authority, pitch our new content to our KOLs and their media sites of choice
- Step 9: Wrap Up/Conclusion – review where we’ve been
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