AI-Produced Content & SEO: A Match Made in … Well, Let's Discuss

Steve Malone
October 3, 2023
3 mins

Imagine this scenario (or actually, maybe you don’t have to — it’s fair to assume that you deal with this quite often as a content marketer) ...

A campaign owner comes barging into your office or, more realistically, you hear that dreaded Teams ringtone. “I NEED THIS CONTENT NOW” they say to you, slamming their fist on the virtual desk. The campaign is going live tomorrow and they need a series of blog posts explaining the product, promotion messaging and of course, all of it needs to be optimized for search.

It’s 5pm, you haven’t had time to start writing, and you don’t want to miss happy hour, what do you do? Well, we all know with the increased availability of generative AI tools, your content could really be only a few clicks away, and search engines by default are not penalizing AI-produced content.

So, the problem is solved, and everything is awesome. You can generate the content and still be on time for happy hour.

Or can you? Has search engine optimization really ever been that easy? Well, maybe it was that easy for a brief time back in the 1990s but that was then, and this is now.

So let’s spend a few minutes walking through a couple of considerations for AI-produced content in your SEO strategy.

Starting with what has not changed …

Can you rank with AI-generated content?

1. Unique content is still a winning strategy

AI is only as good as the data that trained it and only as unique as the amount of people writing about the same topic. For the highest quality and most relevant output, it’s important that your AI is trained within the unique context of your website, and that all of your content stands out from the sea of content that can be produced in just a few clicks.

2. People-first is still a winning strategy

And 100% of the world’s credit cards are in the hands of people, so it’s pretty important to prioritize people. But if that’s not enough, your search engine rankings heavily rely on your ability to be a trusted source with deep knowledge about topics that you intend to rank for. So you must still add the authority, the humor, and the emotion that only a human subject matter expert can provide.

3. Staying as far ahead of the algorithm is still a winning strategy

Deep knowledge of search engine algorithm changes is not a top priority for AI tools and platforms, but it is a very high priority for you as a marketer. Staying ahead of user experience, relevance and quality is an ongoing effort that requires a partnership between you and your AI tools.

And yes, partnership is the “keyword” here (see what I did there). Now, let’s go through a few recommended areas where you can force multiply your SEO efforts by partnering your content team with AI tools.

How to use AI-generated content for SEO

1. Keyword research and expansion of your content clusters

A jack of all trades, master of none strategy will not get you the SEO results you want. Use AI tools to help find trends, long-tail keywords, and develop paths to expand the content clusters you intend to take authority on, and improve your search engine rankings. Then, use the AI tools to write your first draft on new topics before your subject matter experts add that much-needed human touch.

2. Text snippet generation

No one enjoys the mundane work of generating titles, meta descriptions and basic product descriptions. So go ahead and offload these repeatable tasks to AI, which will free up time to go deep into the areas of your strategy that require more time and focus.

3. Enriching your content

People-first is still the winning strategy, but what if AI can make it easier for you to be people-first? That’s where this recommendation comes in. Use AI tools to reformat, translate, personalize and otherwise expand the reach of your content to improve user experience (and search engine rankings) across your web pages.

4, Quality assurance and consistency

Producing content at scale is difficult. Product content at scale without typos, grammar errors and improper use of semicolons is next to impossible even for the best content marketers in the world. So while two sets of human eyes used to be a good standard, you now have a set of non-human eyes that can analyze your content to optimize for humans and search engines alike.

So, to summarize, that AI-produced content piece your campaign manager asked for is probably a decent portion of the way “done” but keep in mind these SEO considerations as you continue to optimize the partnership between AI strategy and your content production. It’s the combination of AI technology and human expertise that will get you the best results.