Few industries are as dependent on continued technological change as SEO, which demands new innovations on a regular basis to help users find what they’re looking for while connecting brands to advertisers who can bolster their image. This fact has given rise to an immense amount of chatter surrounding the future of SEO, with most conversations settling around emerging fields like machine learning and data analytics.
Is the future of SEO really machines learning? If search engines of the future want to thrive at delivering users straight to the content they’re looking for, they’ll need the help of intelligent machines. Here’s how machine learning will upend everything we know about SEO today.
SEO is already data-heavy
If there’s one thing that can be safely said about the modern SEO industry, it’s that it’s immensely data-heavy and in need of thorough data analytics operations which can make sense of such huge piles of information. The human brain can only handle so much data at any given time, meaning machine learning programs have to step in and help working professionals out whenever they’re dealing with truly colossal sums of information. What too few marketing and SEO gurus appreciate is the fact that today’s data-heavy market will only grow more hectic and confusing in the future as billions more devices and millions more users plug into the grid.
This means that SEO needs machine learning in order to remain viable well into the future. This isn’t only because SEO operations will need machine learning algorithms that can tackle dense piles of information, however, but also because major SEO-decision-makers like Google will be employing machine learning algorithms in their own internal operations, forcing others to follow suit. Google now relies on machine learning when it’s and ranking them, for instance, which means that modern SEO gurus have to appreciate this technology for what it is – something that’s forcing major search engines to radically overhaul how they function.
AI is now becoming so advanced that it can determine which content is human-friendly and which is unlikely to bolster engagement figures. Thus, Google’s internal machine learning operations will soon be able to deduce with absolute clarity which websites and links are likely to pique user interest and which are unlikely to generate any sort of positive response. SEO gurus who fail to understand how radically machine learning stands to upend their industry have an unpleasant future waiting for them around the corner.
AI-generated content is coming
One of the most important ways machine learning will help dictate the future of SEO is by churning out tons of AI-generated content. While modern marketers and some SEO professionals may laugh at the idea of AI-generated content that actually engages users, it’s a simple matter of fact that intelligent machines are becoming increasingly capable of generating content that users love and can’t get enough of. Companies like Google are capable of producing amazingly complex machines that can actually learn as they go, which is imperative to the future of SEO as these algorithms will need to be on the fly to more accurately rope in potential customers and readers.
Future SEO operations will be substantially more automated than their contemporary peers, especially as companies realize that instead of hiring new human employees they can just invest in machine learning initiatives. A recent tool, called , has been developed to fully automate the offline SEO process. This includes scraping the internet for guest posting opportunities and presenting users with outreach and link building opportunities they can manage themselves using a dashboard system.
Tools like this can integrate with much broader systems that the company has developed in which they can automatically generate a list of keywords a website client should be ranking for and then start building links on appropriate sites. This can happen with the most minimal input from the client. But this doesn’t spell out the end of humans in the SEO process, of course, but rather demonstrates that man and machine will continue to work closely together in the near-future when it comes to generating clickthrough rates and enticing potential customers with exciting offers.
Machine learning is more than just a tool which SEO professionals will use to generate content, however. This technology is also vitally important to the future of SEO because it will help clamp down on SEO manipulation, which has been historically rampant in the industry but is just starting to face its match in the form of better ranking systems. As algorithms become more central to the link ranking process, SEO gurus will find it necessary to master the ropes of machine learning if they want to deliver results to clients.
Machine learning means less manipulation
The largest impact that machine learning will likely have on SEO is its ability to clamp down on SEO manipulation. Over the past few years, Google has made some adjustments to its internal operations that made it immensely difficult for once-tech-savvy SEO professionals to meddle their way to the top of the rankings. Search engine optimization will grow to become more complicated, with such things as keywords becoming less important and the inner workings of the machine learning operation taking center-stage. As Google itself is making quite clear, the future of SEO will be much less about manipulation and much more about the buyer’s journey.
As some have recently pointed out, Google’s recently announced micro-moments are eerily similar to the buyer’s journey. The company understands that you can’t just defraud your way to the top of the search rankings, but actually have to produce something meaningful for users is you want long-term success. Google is thus pivoting to catering to consumers at every section of the buyer’s journey, something that many SEO gurus will come to mirror in the future as they try to copy the mega-company’s success.
This is good news, especially since it means that consumers everywhere will be directed to more relevant and engaging content that satisfies their needs. It also spells out a future where SEO is dominated by machine learning algorithms capable of isolating users who are uniquely likely to make a purchase when they’re at an important stage of the buyer’s journey. Some marketers may want to resist the machines, but it’s becoming clear they’re an essential part of success if you’re interested in moving forward.
Those looking to make it big in the SEO industry should keep an eye on machine learning – few innovations are upending the way that SEO professionals reach their audience and make deals with brands than intelligent machines.