October 11, 2023
October 11, 2023
Artificial intelligence has been a hot topic among SEOs and business owners for almost a year now, and how it has been used has rapidly changed the way we work. But one question still remains, is AI-generated content actually good for your website? Well, it’s complicated. We deep dive into the answer below.
No. Google states that it does not care how content is generated, but rather on the quality of the content, and how it measures up against their E-E-A-T guidelines. Of course, if you’re churning out one AI article after another, without fact-checking or proofreading first, then it is likely that you’ll get penalised. However, if you do review and add your own touch to AI-generated content, then it is likely that your content will be beneficial to users and therefore benefit your website rankings.
Read on to find out how you can use AI within your SEO strategy without harming your website rankings in the process.
In short, not really. In its ever-changing Webmaster guidelines, Google states that:
“Google’s ranking systems aim to reward original, high-quality content that demonstrates qualities of what we call E-E-A-T: expertise, experience, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness. Our focus on the quality of content, rather than how content is produced, is a useful guide that has helped us deliver reliable, high-quality results to users for years.”
The key here is the word quality, which, in terms of importance, is placed higher than how the content was produced. However, Google continues to say:
“Using automation—including AI—to generate content with the primary purpose of manipulating ranking in search results is a violation of our spam policies.”
As long as the content has a human touch added, is fact-checked, and isn’t posted purely to rank on search engines, then AI content isn’t bad for your website. To see the best results, you should combine content creation with a range of off-page and technical SEO techniques.
If you’d like to find out more about how Google ranks content, you may enjoy one of our recent articles: What are Google Ranking Factors?
AI-generated content may sound like a convenient way to boost your SEO, however, it does come with some problems:
One of the main concerns with AI-generated content is the lack of new information that is produced. Because it is now easier than ever for people to generate content, and because AI essentially reuses information that is already on the internet, there are now thousands of articles on the web all saying the same thing, adding no extra value to users.
Before September 2023, Chat GPT was also only limited to pulling information up to the year 2021, which also contributed to the lack of new information used in AI-generated articles.
Considering that artificially created content essentially copies existing information, AI-generated content also runs the risk of regurgitating information that is factually incorrect. This is why it is so important to review the content before publishing, paying special attention to claims that could affect someone’s health, well-being, or finances (YMYL).
If you’d like to find out more about Your Money, Your Life (YMYL) and its importance in SEO, read one of our latest blog posts: What is E-A-T in SEO & Why Is E-A-T Important?
You may also experience content duplication issues when using AI for SEO. We know AI does not produce original content, so do we really know where the snippets of text are being taken from? Duplicate content is bad for SEO, and may even land you a Google penalty. To avoid this, we’d always recommend using a plagiarism checker, such as Grammarly, on any content written using AI before you publish it to the web.
To find out more, read one of our recent articles: Why is Duplicate Content Bad for SEO?
If you’re using AI to help create content, you must put a human touch on it before you publish it to the web. You must ensure that you adhere to Google’s E-E-A-T guidelines, so we’ve created a quick checklist for you to use when editing AI-generated content:
For advice on writing the perfect blog for SEO, read one of our advice articles: How Do You Optimise a Blog for SEO?
When used correctly, AI can be a valuable tool for business owners and SEOs. It can save time, automate repetitive tasks, and help with tasks you might otherwise not have the skills to do yourself. Here are a few ways that you can use it for SEO:
AI can help you generate keyword ideas based on a seed keyword or topic. It can identify related terms, synonyms, and long-tail keywords that you might not have thought of. From here, you can use tools like Moz or Semrush to find out the volume and difficulty, before mapping your keywords to their target pages.
SEO-optimised structures are the first step to writing any piece of content. AI can help you create these. To create an optimised blog structure, simply tell your AI tool:
If you’re writing an article but you aren’t sure what to write next, you can ask AI tools to provide subtopic ideas or FAQs to help add value to your blog.
AI tools, such as ChatGPT, can help you write Schema Markup templates for different types of schema including:
Once AI has created the template, simply fill in the relevant bits of information and upload it directly to your site or use Google Tag Manager.
Certain AI tools can automatically generate alt text for images using object recognition, which analyses the content of the image and creates descriptive text based on what the tool “sees” in the image.
If you have hundreds or even thousands of products, writing product descriptions can seem like an overwhelming task. Simply give your AI tool a basic structure as the key pieces of information such as:
From here, the AI tool can bulk-create your product descriptions with little to no effort. Of course, if you want these to rank well on search engines, we’d recommend going through and optimising them for elements like headings, keywords, and internal linking, but these could always be done at a later date.
Still unsure about using AI for your website? Speak to one of our experts for a free consultation. We can offer straightforward advice about your website going forward, as well as suggest ideas for your SEO and wider marketing for business growth.