A simple discovery from a Twitter user has recently sparked a divided sentiment among industry experts and enthusiasts. It all started with a click of a button from Tony Hill, a full-time owner of a niche site, who shared the names of big brands that used artificial intelligence (AI) as a tool in generating content.
Although some were looking forward to the changes that may happen, others weren’t ready to embrace what was coming. At the same time, the post reignited familiar questions about using AI in content creation, bringing the debate and confusion back to the forefront.
But Google finally stepped in, explaining its guidelines more clearly this time, putting an end to the debate and confusion. What’s more? Its response could potentially shift the future of search engine optimization (SEO) and marketing.
Is AI Content Against Google’s Guidelines?
Google, the ultimate authority in information, has always been transparent about how to rank on Search. It previously released guidelines that emphasized providing valuable and reliable information to users as the key to achieving top-spot results.
However, some creators often abuse this noble intention and prioritize ranking higher above all else, resorting to low-quality tactics such as machine-generated outputs, scraped content, and keyword stuffing—leaving readers dissatisfied.
This policy, although helpful at some point, left many confused about the use of AI in writing content, as its automated nature may have seemed at odds with Google’s guidelines. But, thanks to the initiative of Blair MacGregor, an experienced marketing strategist, this issue has finally been put to bed. He shared Hill’s post and reached out to the experts at Google SearchLiaison and John Mueller, who provided the much-needed clarity on this topic, settling the debate once and for all.
According to Danny Sullivan (SearchLiaison), AI content isn’t against Google’s guidelines as long as it follows the people-first approach. He also highlighted the spam policy, clarifying that the tech giant will only penalize an automated write-up if it disregards quality.
Sullivan also adds that using an AI tool to write a huge chunk of content will never affect its Search ranking, especially if its purpose is to help readers. In fact, it may even be elevated to Google’s top page results if the algorithm sees it as having the highest value.
Now that everything’s clear and Google is charting the way, brands eager to harness the capabilities of AI in their content can proceed with certainty. But wait; early adopters are already on the move. Let’s take a look in the next section.
Big Brands Meet AI: A Step Into the Future
Hill made an astounding discovery in web publishing and SEO when he chanced upon a globally renowned finance website, Bankrate, utilizing the power of AI to craft content. The article in question delved deep into life insurance for single parents.
Similarly, other brands have begun to harness the capabilities of AI in their content creation, such as CNET – a trailblazer covering all things tech – and CreditCards, which specializes in card management.
While some may question the validity and quality of the pieces, these websites ensure that they undergo rigorous editing and review. In fact, upon visiting their pages, AI-written articles have short descriptions, along with the names of the team who revised and checked the content.
Even Metaroids, our very own news site utilizes ChatGPT to help augment content. The only difference is that we never trust its output at face value. And it makes the job probably 3x faster.
Additionally, in line with Google’s statement, some of those AI-generated content is currently ranking on Search. Just put in the right keywords, and you’ll immediately see them on your screen.
As we’ve seen, the use of AI in web publishing and SEO is rapidly gaining momentum, and it’s clear that Google and other brands are leading the way. The tech giant is even rumored to be working on an AI model that could surpass the capabilities of ChatGPT, the legendary AI language model that can help with a wide variety of tasks.
The emergence of AI undoubtedly has a profound impact not only in this industry but in other aspects, from film to fashion to entertainment and content creation, and even in areas we never imagined, like the rising machine-human relationship.
It’s exciting to think about the possibilities we’ll see, especially since the future is already here.
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