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Ultimate Guide to Using AI SEO in 2024

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has changed the digital marketing world. But if it an effective tool for SEO? Find out here.
Generative AI, AI Robotics, SEO and digital marketing

Until recently, a basic yet well-executed Search Engine Optimization (SEO) strategy has been enough to rank in the top spots on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) and get your website noticed.

However, the introduction of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the world of SEO has completely flipped the industry upside down.

From optimising web pages and generating fresh content ideas to gaining a more in-depth understanding of analytical data, AI has streamlined the SEO process, allowing digital marketers to deliver effective strategies more efficiently.

So, what does AI mean for your SEO strategies in 2024?

In this essential guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know.

But first, we need to ask the most obvious question.

What is AI SEO?

Artificial Intelligence SEO is the practice of using advanced technologies to improve your website’s online visibility on organic search results.

AI SEO tools can help create ideas and outlines for content, write schema markups for your website or scale your SEO operations.

Commonly used emerging technologies in AI SEO include machine learning (ML), deep learning, natural language processing (NLP) and computer vision.

In plain terms, AI SEO involves using technology to automate, assist and streamline numerous parts of the traditional SEO process, making it more efficient and effective.

However, using AI does not take away from the key benefits of hiring an SEO company. When used correctly, AI allows a webmaster to optimise their workflow and deliver high-quality results.

How is AI in SEO used?

It’s no secret that some aspects of SEO can be time-consuming and tedious.

Take on-page optimisation, for example.

With 32.8% of modern SEO professionals stating that on-page elements, such as content optimisation and meta tags, are the most critical ranking factors for winning the top positions on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs), it is not something that can be ignored.

However, achieving tangible results with on-page optimisation is a time-consuming process that may not always provide the desired outcome.

Enter AI SEO.

By using ML and NLP algorithms to generate content ideas and optimise content to match a search query’s specific search intent, digital marketers can deliver a more targeted approach to on-page optimisation without dedicating hours to research and analysis.

While the adoption of AI can be applied to various SEO techniques, such as link-building and SEO audits, it is worth noting that it’s not entirely trusted to perform all SEO-related tasks.

For example, only 5% of content marketers use AI to write entire pieces of content due to how early in its evolution the technology is.

It’s for these reasons that it’s vital to manage expectations when using AI as a tool in your SEO arsenal. The technology is still developing and should be used in conjunction with traditional SEO methods and know-how.

How Has AI SEO Evolved?

The recent evolution of Artificial Intelligence has been a rapid one.

Following ChatGPT’s release in November 2022, the internet has been buzzing with chatter around AI’s potential for automating human tasks.

Since then, Google has also unveiled their latest AI algorithm, BERT, which is revolutionising the way search queries are processed and understood.

As a result of these advancements, AI SEO tools can now provide more accurate results and generate insights that were once impossible to achieve manually.

Moreover, the introduction of AI has already begun changing the way digital marketers approach SEO.

Instead of focusing on keyword density and backlink quantity, AI has shifted the focus to creating high-quality content that meets user intent and generates engagement.

This change in perspective aligns with Google’s mission to provide users with the best possible experience by delivering relevant and valuable content.

But before we explore that, we need to cover one vitally important topic.

Challenges of AI SEO

Before we explore the ways in which AI can elevate your digital marketing game, it’s crucial to understand the challenges SEO’s face when using this technology.

Especially when it could cost them their all-important website rankings.

Sure, AI content can be created five times faster than human content (according to a study by Neil Patel).

But if human-generated content is outranking AI content nearly 95% of the time – there’s something not quite right.

But why is this?

Simply put – it’s quality control.

AI cannot create new content. It can’t bring forward new ideas, perspectives and questions.

All Artificial Intelligence will do is reiterate what other people are saying on the web (whether it’s right or wrong).

Google isn’t a fan of that, at all.

Sure, Google recently announced that they will no longer immediately flag auto-generated content, but under one exception: It must be high-quality.

How Can I Tell If My AI Content Is High Quality?

Some individuals using AI for the first time may not have a clear understanding of what low-quality text is.

You may be thinking, ‘This text reads okay. The information is correct and nothing’s been plagiarised. This could never be low-quality content!’

But this isn’t always enough. In fact, we’re just scratching the surface.

From out-of-place Americanisms to the thousands of AI telltale buzzwords littered throughout a piece of content, you’d be amazed at the number of posts we come across that scream “I was AI generated!”.

You might not see this as an issue, but Google’s algorithm will.

One thing we SEOs should never do is underestimate how intelligent Google’s bots truly are.

If these bots deem your content low quality, your page will not be indexed and your site could potentially get flagged by Google – but more on that in the next section.

Aside from this, the actual heart of the content is also an issue.

As we said earlier, AI can’t form new ideas.

It will only regurgitate what it’s discovered from other websites, and not always in an engaging way that will keep users on your site.

This is the complete opposite of what Google is looking for.

Google values content that brings forward new ideas, adds a true level of insight to a topic and provides a genuinely positive user experience to those that matter most – the users.

And if the writing style and content weren’t enough for you, just think about the high likelihood of misinformation and outdated facts hiding in your auto-generated text.

A time saver? Sure.

Quality? Not necessarily.

Will Google Flag My AI Content?

The aim here isn’t to scaremonger. We simply want to educate and make you aware of the real consequences of the misuse of AI in SEO.

Using AI as the backbone for your content is a risky game, especially following Google’s March 2024 update.

Elizabeth Tucker, Google’s Director of Product Management, recently announced that websites and pages with excessive AI use have a very high likelihood of being flagged for spam.

This could result in your website being completely removed from SERPs, destroying your online presence.

That’s not to say AI can’t be used for SEO, but it needs something that needs to be strategically used to create something high-quality.

This focus on quality and user experience has become a key touchpoint for the latest update in Google’s ranking guidelines: E-E-A-T.

What Is E-E-A-T?

As SERP ranking focus shifts from keywords to user experience (UX), Google has upgraded their E-A-T ranking guidelines to include an extra “E” – Experience.

E-E-A-T is an acronym for Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness and Trustworthiness.

While not being a direct ranking factor within Google’s search algorithm, E-E-A-T is part of Google’s Search Quality Rater Guidelines which are used to measure the quality of a website’s content.

To term “experience” refers to the ability to add firsthand or life experience about a specific page’s content. In turn, this allows a creator to add value through the means of original content.

“Expertise” refers to the level of knowledge on a topic, while “Authoritativeness” means the creator is an authority within their field – backed up by credentials.

Finally, Trustworthiness looks at whether the content creator has provided factual and accurate information.

To gain the trust of a user (or a Google bot), your content must tick all of the other three points on the E-E-A-T pyramid. By building trust, you can naturally increase your domain authority and backlink profile.

While AI can assist with creating high-quality content that meets E-E-A-T guidelines, it still requires a human touch to ensure the trustworthiness factor.

How Do Digital Marketers Use AI?

Now that we’ve painted a picture of the modern SEO landscape following the introduction of Artificial Intelligence, it’s time to explore how expert digital marketers AI integrate this innovative technology into their daily professional practice.

A 2023 HubSpot report found that 62% of business leaders say their company has already invested in AI tools.

Of those using AI, 72% say AI has allowed their employees to work more productively and 71% have reported a positive ROI.

We can begin to understand how these companies have generated a positive ROI while using AI tools by looking at how this technology is used in a professional setting.

The HubSpot report discovered that the most common uses of AI in digital marketing are:

  • Content creation (48%)
  • Analysing data (45%)
  • Learning how to do something (45%)
  • Conducting research (32%)

The fact that less than half of those surveyed do not use AI for content creation reiterates the fact that it should not be used as a be-all-end-all solution to improving rankings and saving money on digital marketing strategies.

However, considering that the average digital marketer is working on five campaigns at a time, AI is a powerful tool that can streamline mundane tasks and improve efficiency across all five campaigns, in turn providing quality results across all five campaigns.

Additionally, the same study concluded that AI gifts back 12.5 hours a week, resulting in a staggering 25 to 26 additional working days every year for employers.

This study highlights that whether you’re delivering an SEO strategy for a law firm, financial advisor, or any other profession, by utilising AI effectively, webmasters can deliver high-quality results in less time and ultimately streamline their working day.

One of the most significant revelations to come from this report is that AI does not replace marketers, but enhances their roles, allowing them to focus on campaign strategy and creativity.

How to Save Time Using AI SEO (7 Ways)

Harnessing the power of AI in SEO can transform your digital marketing strategy, switching it from a time-consuming and laborious task into a streamlined, efficient process.

Let’s explore the seven practical ways you can save precious hours and maximise your productivity by skillfully integrating AI SEO into your workflow.

Idea Generation

An effective SEO strategy focuses on discovering new ranking opportunities that have not yet been discovered by your competitors.

But finding these valuable opportunities takes up time, creativity and research, which can be done more efficiently using AI.

Tools like BrightEdge and MarketMuse use AI to analyse user search data and create content clusters to help you develop new keyword ideas.

With 35% of content marketers using AI to brainstorm new ideas, AI is a clear solution for saving time and resources in this stage of the SEO process.

Keyword Research

Whilst not being as effective of a tool as SE Ranking, Ahrefs, UberSuggest or Mangools, AI tools can be useful tools for initial keyword research.

AI greatly enhances the keyword research process by providing deep insights into user search behaviour, predicting future trends, and identifying low-competition, high-volume keywords.

AI-powered SEO tools, like RyRob and SEO.ai, leverage machine learning algorithms to analyse large amounts of data from various sources in real-time.

This allows marketers to uncover long-tail keywords and semantic keyword variations, which can significantly improve the relevance and performance of your content in search engine results.

Content Creation

For some digital marketers, the thought of using AI to create content is a tempting one.

But is AI content creation a good idea?

Well, yes and no.

It’s true, Google’s guidelines have shifted from being against auto-generated content to rewarding it. The only catch (that we know of) is that it must be high-quality content.

However, not everyone in the industry is completely sold that AI content is the way forward.

As we’ve established, many SEO tools are still developing and cannot be wholly trusted to create and distribute content without a human touch.

That’s why SEO expert Isaline Muelhauser warns against using AI too heavily for content generation on an episode of leading industry podcast SEO in 2024.

Instead, using AI as inspiration for content structure, headlines and subheadings, or sentence optimisation, can save marketers time and effort while still allowing for personal input.

What’s more, AI can be used to understand the user intent behind a specific keyword, allowing digital marketers to provide the most relevant content to their target audience.

By using AI to improve the quality of your content, not your quantity,  you can optimise your SEO strategies and still deliver a unique human touch that inspires SERP rankings.

If you use AI for content creation and your content is failing to rank – maybe take a look at what you’re doing wrong. It could be that the human touch is missing.

Content Optimisation

Following on from the previous point, AI can have a transformative effect on the optimisation of SEO content for a specific keyword and its user intent.

AI-powered tools, such as Clearscope and Surfer SEO, analyse a wealth of data to provide recommendations for keyword density, content length, readability, and other factors integral to SEO performance.

By using these tools, SEO professionals can optimise content in alignment with Google or Bing’s ever-evolving algorithms, making sure their content resonates with both search engines and users.

Learn About Your Audience

By utilising AI’s inherent ability to interpret and analyse vast quantities of data, digital marketers and webmasters can build a comprehensive understanding of their audience’s preferences, interests, and online behaviour.

AI-powered analytics tools, such as Google Analytics 4, leverage machine learning algorithms to track and record various user interactions in real-time.

What’s more, by combining the insights from Google Search Console with analytics tools, webmasters can gain valuable insights into user behaviour and optimise their SEO strategies to target specific user needs.

These insights are crucial in understanding the success of an SEO campaign and tailoring strategies towards achieving desired results and rankings on SERPs.

Optimisation for Voice Search

One of the fastest evolving (and least understood) areas of SEO is optimising for voice search.

With more people than ever using voice-assisted search and an estimated 8.4 billion voice assistants by the end of 2024 (more than the world’s population), it’s clear that this is a trend set to continue.

However, optimising for voice search requires a different approach than traditional SEO techniques.

After all, with voice search, the goal is not to be found on page one but rather be the only result, since voice searches typically generate a single answer.

Otherwise known as voice search engine optimisation (VSEO), webmasters must optimise content for conversational keywords and phrases and create more specific long-tail keywords that align with user questions.

AI being used to optimise for VSEO will leverage NLP to interpret and understand voice searches, which often involve more conversational language compared to traditional text queries.

Some modern AI SEO tools use the technology to parse the user’s spoken language, detecting intent and context, and thereby optimising your content to align with these voice search trends.

This ability to process spoken language helps SEO professionals create more relevant and effective voice-optimised content, boosting visibility in voice-driven search results.

In essence, this strategy is about optimising for featured snippets and position zero rankings for hyper-specific long-tail keywords, which may not always result in a boost in traffic but will help to boost your online visibility.

AI for Scaling SEO

Scaling an SEO strategy can be a tedious task, requiring significant time and resources to be effective.

Fortunately, AI technology can help streamline the process by automating some of the most labour-intensive tasks associated with SEO.

As SEO strategies continue to evolve, the use of AI for scaling SEO and optimising for technical SEO is gaining traction.

Some SEO tools use AI that can crawl and index websites, identify technical issues, and provide actionable recommendations to improve site performance.

By automating these traditionally time-consuming tasks, AI allows SEO professionals to scale their efforts and focus on strategic decision-making, enhancing overall SEO performance and efficiency.

This integration of AI in SEO positions brands for improved visibility and higher rankings in SERPs, thereby bolstering online presence and credibility.

Best AI Tools For SEO

In the dynamic landscape of SEO, having the right tools can make the difference between leading the pack or lagging behind.

Artificial Intelligence is reshaping how SEO professionals optimise online content, with innovative tools designed to streamline processes, enhance analysis and drive success.

In this section, we look at five of the best AI SEO tools on the market, shedding light on their capabilities and how they can revolutionise your SEO strategies.

Jasper

Jasper is a pioneering AI-based tool that promises transformative change in the realm of SEO. This AI writing assistant enables the creation of high-quality content armed with the power of advanced machine learning techniques.

Beyond mere content generation, Jasper provides invaluable insights into keyword density, optimised headline suggestions, and ideal content length, effectively acting as a guide in your SEO journey.

OpenAI’s ChatGPT

Created by Open.ai, ChatGPT is arguably the world’s most well-known AI tool.

ChatGPT uses natural language processing techniques to produce human-like text, that is both engaging and optimised for SEO if given a detailed enough prompt.

More than just a chatbot, it can also be used to create content that is tailored to the semantic and syntactic preferences of popular search engines.

The AI is capable of understanding topics and context, allowing it to generate content that not only appeals to readers but also aligns with crucial SEO strategies.

Pro Rank Tracker

Pro Rank Tracker is an advanced AI SEO tool that allows digital marketers to discover, track and optimise their keyword rankings effectively.

This tool offers a comprehensive suite of features, including global and local rank tracking and Google SERP feature tracking, making it a powerful addition to any SEO toolkit.

By enabling marketers to monitor their performance across a multitude of search engines and platforms, Pro Rank Tracker provides invaluable insights that can be used to refine and enhance SEO strategies.

AlliAI

Next on our list is AlliAI, an effective tool that allows users to optimise their website for SERPs within minutes.

Being a comprehensive platform for automating and optimising your SEO strategies.

AlliAI conducts automatic website audits, identifies high-performing keywords, and provides content optimisation tips for its users.

The unique aspect of AlliAI is its ability to learn and adapt strategies based on algorithm changes. The tool’s live editor can edit and optimise text, code and content in real-time, ensuring that your website is always at the top of its game.

SEO.ai

SEO.ai is a versatile AI-powered tool that greatly simplifies and enhances SEO practices.

It offers a broad spectrum of features including keyword research, competitor analysis, and link building, making it a comprehensive solution for SEO professionals.

Its sophisticated AI system conducts an in-depth analysis of your website’s optimisation status, identifying gaps and opportunities for improvements.

Most often used to optimise content to match specific tones, search intents and keywords, SEO.ai is a powerful tool that can effectively scale your SEO efforts.

Don’t Forget Why You’ve Invested in SEO in the First Place

Admittedly, the thought of going off on your own with the aid of AI SEO tools is tempting.

But you shouldn’t forget why you’ve hired an SEO agency (or been hired by a client) in the first place.

SEO is a technical and time-consuming process that requires industry know-how, an understanding of numbers and constant minute tweaks to content.

True, AI can help streamline the process, but it’s not a shortcut solution.

In short, AI is not the answer. It is a tool you can use to help get you where you need to be in a more time-efficient manner, enabling you to focus on the bigger picture.

Take the time saved by using AI SEO tools and put it towards creating engaging and high-quality content, building strong backlinks, and developing effective marketing strategies. In the end, that’s what will ultimately drive organic traffic and boost your search engine rankings.

So make sure to use AI SEO tools as a complement to your skills and expertise, not as a replacement. That’s why we SEOs are hired after all.

Discover how an effective SEO and design strategy can transform your online presence by contacting Inc Studio today. Let our team of experts help you maximise your digital marketing potential and reach new heights through the power of effective SEO.

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