Artificial Intelligence is no longer just a buzzword. Computer scientists have made significant strides in AI technology over the last few decades, using advanced algorithms to enable computer software to analyse, reason, learn, and create.
Behind the scenes, basic AI has been used in industries such as car manufacturing and high-level computer processing for the last couple of decades. However, the recent surge in AI development has uncovered countless new possibilities in the public domain. From AI-created art to copy or music, it has never been easier to leverage advanced machine learning to produce content. Over the next few years, this new technology will cause shockwaves throughout established industries, entirely revamping how we think about everything from art and culture to digital marketing and business prospecting.
At Content Lab, our mission is to stay ahead of the pulse regarding new developments in the copywriting and content creation sphere. We explored SEO’s shifting nature since the early 2000s in a previous blog post. AI content generation is already causing significant upheaval, especially with applications such as ChatGPT hitting the market. But how does this affect SEO? Does Google rank AI writing?
The answer to this question is rapidly evolving. Industry attitudes to and guidelines on AI content generation are accelerating at breakneck speeds, causing a scramble among businesses and writers to adapt to the dawn of a potential new age.
Google’s dedicated AI division states:
“At Google, we think that AI can meaningfully improve people’s lives and that the biggest impact will come when everyone can access it.”
While the search engine giant clearly welcomes AI as a concept, the most prescient factor here is “meaningfully improve”. Is AI-generated content at the stage where it can bring a more meaningful improvement than copy written by humans? How do Google and other search engines quantify this? And what does the future hold for AI and SEO? Stay with us for an in-depth investigation.
AI Content Writing: Where Are We At?
Rudimentary AI writing assistance surrounds us in various facets of modern life. Autocorrect, spell checkers, and more complex grammar systems like Grammarly all qualify as basic artificial intelligence. But this is simply the tip of the iceberg.
A new wave of advanced chatbots is offering generative AI solutions to create unique content rather than just tinkering with preexisting, human-written copy. For example, OpenAI’s ChatGPT was made available to the public in November 2022, a piece of software that has completely transformed expectations regarding computer-generated writing and its capabilities.
Forbes wrote in July 2021, “AI is Not Going to Replace Waiters Anytime Soon – But The Future Might Be Closer Than You Think”. Well, it’s here already. ChatGPT has caused a sensation in just a few months, causing schools and universities to rethink how they grade potentially AI-generated essays.
Naturally, OpenAI’s groundbreaking invention has also caused a stir in the digital marketing and content industries. ChatGPT (short for Chat Generative Pre-Trained Transformer) is by far the most capable AI writing tool yet, but whether it can replace professional human writers is yet to be seen. Many experts still urge caution, as advanced chatbots still have a long way to go before they can replicate the many complexities of human writing. Does Google rank AI writing? It can depend.
What Does Google Say?
What AI-generated content means for SEO is shifting rapidly. Google’s algorithm has been rewarding copy it deems as genuinely valuable for a few years now, negating tactics such as keyword stuffing and excessively artificial back-linking. In Spring 2022, the search engine giant was flatly against using AI writing tools, considering it against the Webmaster Guidelines, but things are moving fast.
The situation already looked different by Autumn. Google changed its stance to allow AI content, but only when it brought value and was genuinely useful. The search engine didn’t necessarily mind whether content was written by a machine or a human. The main issue at heart was whether or not the copy was actually written for humans rather than search engine algorithms.
Nowadays, the Google Search Essentials guidelines highlight “spamming automatically-generated content”, but it no longer outright bans AI-assisted writing. Times are changing, but tools such as ChatGPT or Jasper still have a way to go.
Google and other search engines have left the door open to the possibility of computers replacing human copywriters. However, whether the software is advanced enough to actually do it is questionable. At least for the moment.
The Dangers of AI vs Human Writing
One of the main dangers of using AI content creation is being punished for subpar or spam content for the sake of convenience. Computer-generated text can take seconds rather than hours to complete, but it has to be done at an exceptional level to score highly on SERPs.
This is where things can break down. Even the most advanced AI tools don’t have the same kind of real-world experience as actual humans. They do their best to create content based on preexisting online data and various prompts, but they don’t have the same powers of imagination as actual humans.
Google and other search engines have become skilled at identifying obviously rehashed content, so computer-generated articles are far more prone to being treated as spam. As a result, businesses are punished for black hat SEO strategies and find it much harder to climb SERPs.
This can be avoided with pitch-perfect editing and a high-quality array of prompts and sources, but many digital marketing experts aren’t prepared to take the risk yet. Google’s algorithm is highly accomplished at spotting spam and rewarding genuine quality. Not quite hitting the level required is a danger of AI content generation.
Can You Enhance SEO With AI?
But the question of whether AI content is helpful or not isn’t entirely black and white. Google’s new guidelines don’t technically state that it will be punished, so there will be some areas where computer-generated writing could be useful.
For example, many businesses will benefit from AI-assisted short copy, including basic product descriptions or headers on a website homepage. This can enhance a website’s overall SEO score but won’t have the transformative effects of outstanding content creation on more complex subjects. In the toss-up between AI vs human writing, we still come out on top.
Nevertheless, AI can still be used to positively impact your SERP rankings. Many experts use computer-generated solutions to find the best keywords, check rankings, undergo competitor analysis, and audit their own websites.
Content Lab: Create Engaging & Organic Content
At Content Lab, we’re fully aware of how important engaging and organic content is for SEO optimisation. This is especially true in the iGaming niche, where competition is at one of the highest points throughout the entire digital marketing paradigm.
Don’t hesitate to get in touch if you’re looking for high-quality content solutions across various aspects of the online casino and sports betting industries. Our services include professional copywriting, proofreading, translation services, and SEO enhancement, so we have all bases covered. AI content generation cannot guarantee results yet, but we can!
How AI Content Generation Works
ChatGPT and other AI content tools use Natural Language Processing and Natural Language Generation models to produce unique copy using prompts and parameters such as tone of voice or general form.
Essentially, these generative writing tools take prompts and trawl through as many pieces of online content (millions, if not billions) as possible to produce content satisfying the brief. The result is a creative rehashing of the almost infinite amount of historical data freely available online.
This could only provide limited results in the past, but state-of-the-art chatbots are starting to break the mould. These tools get more and more accurate as you feed them information and criticisms of what is wrong or doesn’t sound natural.
Theoretically, AI content generation could replace human writers in digital marketing fields. You would think these chatbots could learn the complexities of SEO optimisation while building accurate vocabulary regarding specific niches like iGaming. Search engines have the last word here. Does Google rank AI writing? If these platforms start rewarding AI writing as much as high-level human writing, we could certainly see a profound shift.
What Does The Future Hold For AI Content Generation?
Content tools such as ChatGPT and Jasper undeniably have a future in digital marketing and copywriting. The software currently available is very impressive at formulating new copy out of preexisting data and will only get better as it learns more and more through practice.
Businesses can already take advantage of AI by using it to optimise their keyword analysis and competitor research. But can it go further? Ultimately, it’s up to us. If humans can no longer spot AI copy from rich and comprehensive content from a high-level professional writer, it will become more and more widely used. Nevertheless, the software still has some way to go according to most experts.
Developments are coming thick and fast. Google unveiled Bard at the beginning of February 2023, an “experimental conversational AI service powered by LaMDA”. The service is only in its embryonic services, with the search engine taking its time to employ internal testing and gather external user feedback. Ultimately, Bard will be rolled out to help people gain deeper insights to more complex questions. Whether or not it can be used for content generation is yet to be seen. Nevertheless, it’s another clear example of the evolving question of AI vs human writing.
Check Back To The Content Lab Blog For More Digital Marketing Research
Check back on the Content Lab blog for more regular updates and fascinating deep dives into the digital marketing and copywriting worlds. We answered the question, “Does Google rank AI writing?” this time and look forward to exploring more about SEO and beyond!Marko Marincic