Understand the Impact on Google Search Traffic in One Article
Learn Google Search Traffic Impact in One Article
Combining with recent algorithm fluctuations and ranking situations, Linus has some ideas on the future direction of independent SEO and will discuss with everyone in detail the possible trends of Google and traffic changes in the future.
A sentence to introduce Google’s SGE (Search Generative Experience) is:
Google has added the ChatGPT AI function in the search box, which can be connected to the Internet, has references, and has rich expressions, which can convey more “accurate” information.
What this article will talk about:
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Note: The SGE feature in this article is currently in the testing phase (June 3, 2023) and may change in the future.
I. How to Apply?
If you meet the requirements (in the United States, English environment), you will see a small flask in Google’s Search Labs when you open a new tab by default, and you can enter by clicking:
If the following prompt appears, it is generally because there is a problem with your various environments. Currently (June 3, 2023), Google stated that Bard and SGE can only be used in the United States and English browser environments, so you need a browser that looks completely in the United States. I believe that independent station or Amazon sellers should be familiar with this operation and will not elaborate. (Scan the QR code at the end of the article to join the group and communicate deeply with Linus)
After joining the waitlist, just be patient. Recently, Google has relaxed its conditions, and many researchers have obtained experience qualifications. The estimated time will not be long.
II. How to Use
When you receive the email notification permission, as mentioned in the previous text, open a new tab and select the hourglass in the upper right corner to open the following three switches. You can use several features promoted at the Google IO conference! However, please note that the current AI function will only be enabled when you search in English.
By opening Google search, you can search for some questions that Google’s generative AI doesn’t appear to have an answer for, unless you actively click on it:
After multiple tests, Linus observed that the reason why AI does not answer certain questions is most likely because the problem is too simple, and Google believes that the search results are sufficient to answer your question, or the question is not common (no one cares); on the other hand, if Google believes that generative AI can display better results, it will display SGE results.
Searching for an “obscure” question like “what is jindouyun SEO Linus” (who is Linus in jindouyun SEO), the answer can also be found and updated from Linus’s personal website, and other possible answers are given (note that the reference website is not ours haha). From the results, it is scary that he has already taken the step of translating Chinese into an answer, rather than just using English search results:
Google writes in their SGE prompt: SGE is designed to help you understand a topic more quickly, discover new perspectives and insights, and make it easier to get work done. Therefore, now the search can do some heavy lifting for you, rather than you asking a series of questions and piecing together this information.
Therefore, the value of SGE in search is to integrate a series of questions that you may want to search for. I searched for an example question, such as “underrated summer travel ideas”, and the AI-generated results are divided into several categories:
AI replies, and you can see that it not only tells me where I can go, but also provides some corresponding tips
Reference links, if your article performs well (basically the top three), it will appear here
Related questions, which can be understood as equivalent to People Also Ask
Different display formats, as shown in the figure below, are different from ChatGPT in that it integrates search results into the question, which is one of the future display formats of generative dialogue tools, especially when titles and descriptions become shorter. In Linus’s opinion, SGE is an upgraded version of selected summaries and is worth paying attention to!
Google is relatively restrained in terms of AI, and does not display a lot of text. So what changes will occur in the display of products if we want to shop? Where will the ads be placed? Independent sellers should pay attention!
Using “Bluetooth speaker for a pool party” as an example, the generative AI displays the following information for us:
A short purchase guide is displayed on the left, and a top 3 “how to buy” type webpage is displayed on the right.
Product information is displayed below, and by clicking on the product, you will find a very detailed product information aggregation page on the right (see the figure below).
The pop-up tag on the right includes:
Purchase links, usually including Amazon, Best Buy, Walmart, independent websites, but if the independent website performs well, it will generally be displayed in the first position.
Comment information. This is not just for a particular site’s product, but will collect comments from all relevant sites. This actually provides consumers with more comprehensive information, but for sellers, it is still very laborious to maintain comments on multiple platforms. And comments are also a more important focus for Google SEO after the update.
There are also videos, more choices and so on below…
Of course, if you advertise, your ad will actually appear first, followed by generative AI information, and then natural search SEO results:
Similarly, you can choose different display formats. The interesting thing is that for each characteristic, the search results will choose the best article webpage below to avoid a one-size-fits-all approach, which is actually not bad for consumers.
For us content writers, the most important thing is being able to see which points are appropriate and which are not, so we can strengthen our content in a targeted way.
Scrolling down will show a mix of knowledge and product, clicking on a product will display specific product information on the right to promote purchase:
When you click on “more questions” below, Google will pop up a conversational chat window, which is essentially a chatbot version of ChatGPT. I really like this feature, perhaps because I’m used to ChatGPT. I even think that chatting is the normal form of search:
But this is actually Google search disguised as a ChatGPT interface, and what Google provides as an answer is a searchable page that can be scrolled down:
Code Tips are for programmers and can output code directly based on your question. The feature is cool, but like ChatGPT, it can only provide some function implementation and idea expansion. If you want to be more productive, Linus recommends using Github Copilot to make your coding work faster.
I easily passed a simple Python question:
This feature is equivalent to adding search results to a Google document, which can reduce some workload for researchers. However, this feature can only be used on the desktop version of Chrome, and cannot be used on mobile devices.
After adding, you can view it in a Google document, but currently it is only saved as a cell, and it is uncertain which specific scenarios it can be used in. Hopefully, there will be more new features with Google’s optimization in the future!
III. Issues and Considerations for SGE and SEO
A. SGE search results occupy too much page space!
Currently, a very serious problem has been found that may potentially affect SEO. Sometimes when asking a specific question, such as Code Tips, Google SGE will fill the entire screen. This is actually unfavorable for SEO. This is a very obvious disadvantage for SEOers because for simple questions, unless you are on the first page, you may never get click traffic again.
Therefore, content must be innovative. AI can no longer answer the questions that are suitable for writing. We must write in-depth and refined content in order to attract Google’s crawling.
B. Will SGE affect website traffic as an upgraded featured snippet?
According to data after Google’s featured snippet was launched in 2020, Moz’s page traffic decreased by 12% due to featured snippets. Now, SGE is stronger than featured snippets. Will users still click into the website?
Currently, it is not very clear. It can be certain that there will be an impact when it is widely used, but the impact on e-commerce will not be as great as in the pure content creation field. Linus will continue to observe.
C. Content creators are under a lot of pressure
For some questions, there are already standard answers. There may already be 1000 articles on “how to use ChatGPT”. How can you compete in these articles? It is almost impossible. There are also some topics with very low variability, such as “how to fill nail holes in walls”, which generally have no updated content to write.
The trend of the current LLM large model is very turbulent, and content creators should pay more attention to the freshness, creativity, and credibility of the content. This is higher than before. Especially for e-commerce operations, writing a blog post is already very difficult. Now, we need to improve the content quality to the level of professional editors. At this time, it may be very important to seek a professional SEO service provider. Linus believes that the Kung Fu Cloud SEO can achieve this.
In addition, there are still doubts about the credibility of large models, especially after a certain American lawyer used ChatGPT’s content as a case source a few days ago, which caused a huge uproar and is likely to result in the revocation of their qualifications. Therefore, how to improve the credibility and authority of the website and follow the principles of Google EEAT is still a mystery.
D. Content copyright is ambiguous
Currently, the data of large models mainly comes from online sources, such as Common Crawl and Google’s C4 dataset. In the United States, authors have already started to sue large models for using their content without citing the source.
If you are sensitive to copyright issues, you can block Common Crawl, Googleother (Bard), ChatGPT’s Browsing plugin, and other plugins in the robots.txt file.
E. Google’s current algorithm is very concerned about comments
Whether it is an official update or SGE, it reflects that the comment page will be one of our future directions. This is more complex, and we need to continue to pay attention to Linus SEO. I will focus on how to strengthen the comment page in subsequent articles.
F. It should take a long time to promote it to be available worldwide and guaranteed to be available
After testing, the failure rate is still a bit high, and errors will occur when querying multiple times. Google has always been cautious in the search field because advertising revenue accounts for the vast majority of Google’s proportion. No one knows whether Google will push the current test version of SGE to everyone, as this will inevitably have a huge impact on traffic and keywords. The Kung Fu Cloud SEO will continue to observe.
G. Currently generated answers seem to be just fragments of information mixed together
It is unclear whether Google will improve its performance in the future, but currently, Google’s search results will pay more attention to user intent and needs, rather than relying on specific search keywords. They provide short answers, which are different from the lengthy responses of ChatGPT.
H. Establishing content pages like SGE will bring better traffic
For independent sellers, they can follow SGE’s presentation format and aggregate information on a landing page (which seems to be already happening), including the following information to be more helpful: videos, product details, product reviews, parameters, short guide to various blogs or landing pages, etc.
J. Make a clickbait title
The titles and descriptions displayed in SGE are very short, even with only 4-5 words. For our future content, perhaps the ability to quickly capture the attractiveness of potential audiences in the first 5 words is the most important aspect of increasing clickthrough rates.
K. Long-tail keywords may have a significant impact
For various long-tail keywords, or niche topics, the LLM model may be able to answer them very well, even better than articles written by people. We are continuously following up on this.
4. Other fun discoveries about SGE
A. Where did SGE’s colors come from?
Linus has played with Material Design for a while, so he is very familiar with this Material You design scheme from Google. The colors are very comfortable, and personally I feel that it is the top color value on the Android platform. I strongly recommend that everyone can refer to the color scheme.
Google also mentioned the origin of the colors in their SGE document on page 10:
Color has played an important role in helping people understand SGE clearly as a new way of interacting with search. For example, the color container of AI-driven snapshots will dynamically change, and in the next few months, the use of colors will change to better reflect specific travel types and query intentions themselves.
Linus thinks it’s still cool!
B. SGE is not a thousand faces
The SGE results that are searched out look the same, from Linus’s limited observation.
C. Converse Mode may be Google’s next form
It is the dialogue mode mentioned above, and I personally like it very much.
Linus believes that the future of large models has arrived, and SGE is to maintain its leading level in the next competitive cycle for Google.
For SEO, there are pros and cons at present. Some niche sites have used AI technology correctly and have achieved very good results in the past two months, but some students who are not very good at using it may even have the opposite effect.
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