Navigating Google’s AI Changes to Search: Is SEO Dead?

Emergence of AI Overview for searches upends some strategies for content, brand, and ad positioning on the web.

Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Editor

May 28, 2024

With the rollout of Google’s Generative AI Overview for web searches, the game changed for businesses that relied on understanding how to leverage their sites and content for higher ranking.

AI Overview puts an AI-generated summary at the top of the page in response to searches. Links still appear below the summary and AI Overview might not appear for every search. This raised concerns among brands and content publishers, who fear the loss of online traffic to their sites if summarized answers suffice for users. If AI Overview, which gathers available information from the web, provides all the answers itself, why visit websites?

Changes Google made to search were meant to de-rank sites that tried too hard to feed into Google’s search algorithm. How beneficial is that to ad revenue and getting products and brand names out there?

In this episode, Pierre DeBois, CEO of Zimana Analytics, and Duane Forrester, vice president of industry insights with Yext, discuss some of the fears stirred by AI Overview, what the changes may mean, and potential long-term ways businesses will evolve in response.

Listen to the full episode here.

About the Author(s)

Joao-Pierre S. Ruth

Senior Editor

Joao-Pierre S. Ruth covers tech policy, including ethics, privacy, legislation, and risk; fintech; code strategy; and cloud & edge computing for InformationWeek. He has been a journalist for more than 25 years, reporting on business and technology first in New Jersey, then covering the New York tech startup community, and later as a freelancer for such outlets as TheStreet, Investopedia, and Street Fight. Follow him on Twitter: @jpruth.

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