Danielle asks, “With AI running everything in search engines, is SEO dead?”
It depends on what you mean by SEO. Old SEO – cheesy tricks like filling the bottom of your pages with paragraphs of white text on a white background is dead. Stuffing every possible combination of keyword on a page in different fonts and headings is dead. Spamming thousands of websites a day begging for links is dead.
But creating content that answers the questions people have and fulfilling the intent of their searches? That’s modern SEO and it’s 100% not dead. What’s different is that the AI software behind search engines is ever-improving at detecting context and intent of searchers – human beings – so if your content marketing isn’t legitimately helpful to human beings, it’s not going to do well in SEO.
What matters in today’s SEO:
- Intent Fulfillment
- Omnichannel Presence
Can’t see anything? Watch it on YouTube here.
Some blogs I recommend reading for modern SEO:
- Rand Fishkin’s blog
- Stone Temple Consulting
- Moz blog
- SEMRush blog
- AHrefs blog
- Search Engine Land
- Search Engine Watch
Listen to the audio here:
- Got a question for You Ask, I’ll Answer? Submit it here!
- Subscribe to my weekly newsletter for more useful marketing tips.
- Find older episodes of You Ask, I Answer on my YouTube channel.
What follows is an AI-generated transcript. The transcript may contain errors and is not a substitute for watching the video.
In today’s you ask I answer Daniel asks the perennial question is Seo dead specifically with AI running everything in search engines is Seo dead.
As always, look, the answer is it depends on what you mean by SEO if you mean old SEO cheesy tricks like filling the bottom of your pages with paragraphs of white text on a white background. Yes, that’s dead stuffing every possible combination of a keyword on a page in different fonts and headings and stuff that’s dead spamming thousands of unrelated websites with you know blog comments spamming programs or just cold emailing you know webmaster at whatever domain begging for links definitely dead but the creation of content that helps people answer their questions and what they meant that is modern SEO and it is 100% not dead. What’s different today is that.
The AI software behind search engines, the power search engines is getting better and better every day at detecting the context in intent of what we the human beings are searching for. And so our SEO program our SEO strategies and tactics and methods and tools have to focus on helping human beings do what they meant to do. If we do that, our SEO will work well if we don’t do that our SEO will work poorly
Rand Fishkin had a terrific blog post about nine months ago now on fulfilling intent on how Google can detect intent in search results. So in the in his blog post example he talks about if someone searches for damaged furniture what context. And what does their intent, are they looking for to furniture repair, are they looking for friendship help and tips and things like that and Google can string together and understand the history of our search even tells you, here’s your search history. So if you look at, you know, scratch in furniture.
repair and then furniture repair and dented furniture
Google starts to piece together. Oh, you’re asking for how do you fix scratched furniture. If you search for scratched furniture and then you look for furniture repair and furniture repair shop near me Google understands the intent of your search is I want someone else to fix this thing for me. And so
if you are a furniture repair shop, you’ve got it. You’ve got to have content that helps fulfill that first intent, like, Hey, here’s how you fix that thing but if you don’t want to do it yourself. Here’s how you do it. And so there’s a link in the in the blog post that goes with this video that goes to rands article, it’s definitely worth a read because it walks through you know some of these intense. There are, I would say four pillars of modern SEO today. Number one is this intense fulfillment and is so important because without that fulfillment of intent. We’re going to only partially answered the queries that are searchers asking for and then.
in turn means are we won’t get the behaviors we want some of these folks when they search for something are looking for. Okay. How do you know how do i do the thing and we want to be able to fill fulfill that and get them to stay on our site, get them to not not what’s called Pogo sticking where they just bouncing page to page two page in search results search result a search result because that doesn’t help us.
The second is reputation reputation matters a ton in modern SEO if I have a blog about marketing and analytics. I want links from other reputable marketing and analytics blogs to show that I am part of this network or community or topic could conceptually of reputable marketing analytics websites. If all my links are from like random food sites and deodorant sites and stuff like that, which is very common in the old days when you just spam everybody on the web and say hey have linked to my site right you don’t want to do that anymore. You have to focus on your reputation or.
You get your links from so that’s where things like by lines and guest blog posts and guest videos and things attracting links from those other websites that are relevant to you really help the third is omni channel presence or multi channel presence at the very least, where you’re creating content in multiple different formats on a frequent basis in different locations that are all linked together so that search engines understand. Oh, this person in all these different contexts is talking about this content this with this intent.
So when I post on YouTube and I have my blog and I have my social channels and I have the audio that goes with this and it’s all detectable it’s all interpreted as being about data and analytics and all this stuff that helps establish a mini network in a way of
what I’m about or what my website is about and fine.
context matters as well. Specifically time context. And this is where tools like predictive analytics come in handy.
I am I have a whole backlog of these questions to answer for people, but I’m using predictive analytics to figure out what this week. This is the week of May 16 2018
people are searching for it and talking about most and SEO is one of the things this week. And so I’m providing this answer when people care about it the most because that in turn will get the behaviors on things like Google
in the search engines to to be most interested in. Hopefully if my content ranks well for those things in the video ranks well for those things, then I’ll get the behavior. I want out of the audience. So those are the four pillars of modern SEO if you’re not doing those things, then yes, you may legitimately be questioning is Seo dead because you’re not getting the results you want. If you’re fulfilling intent, if you’re building great reputation. If you are.
Focusing on omni channel presence and you are using context and time to guide your content, then your your modern SEO strategy should be just fine. So, great question. Daniel. There’s a lot of nuance to this again I would check out Rand Fishkin blog over at spark Toro dot com I would check out our friends over at Stone Temple consulting, they have a great blog as well. I would check out some of the tool vendors like so. Mas and sem rush and RFS and all these different companies that provide these tools. Many of them have very good blogs as well. So if you want to read up on what’s happening the latest in SEO. Those are all places a great place to go. So thanks for watching as always please subscribe in the US at the to the YouTube channel and to the email newsletter and I’ll talk to you soon. Take care.
If you want help with your company’s data and analytics visit Trust Insights dot com today and let us know how we can help you.
You might also enjoy:
- How I Think About NFTs
- B2B Email Marketers: Stop Blocking Personal Emails
- Marketing Data Science: Introduction to Data Blending
- Is Social Listening Useful?
- It's Okay to Not Be Okay Right Now
Want to read more like this from Christopher Penn? Get updates here:
Get your copy of AI For Marketers