AI chatbots are rapidly transforming the search landscape. Just as the browser wars reshaped the web, the current battle between Microsoft Copilot/Bing Chat and Google SGE is poised to have a profound impact on Bing and Google search visibility, traffic and conversions.
AI search result chatbot comparison
|Alongside traditional results on desktop
|Above traditional results
|Impact on search behavior
|Hight to extreme
|Impact on search traffic
|Hight to extreme
Why is optimizing for AI search results important?
Although overall search result impact is currently moderate, AI has the potential to significantly alter how search results are displayed.
- Chatbots represent a new channel for discovery. Both Copilot/Bing Chat and Google SGE feature AI-generated responses directly within search results that contain links to external websites, presenting new ways for people to find your content.
- Optimization for AI is essential. To ensure your content is surfaced by these chatbots, you’ll need to adapt your SEO strategies accordingly.
Who are the key AI search result players?
- Microsoft Copilot/Bing Chat (powered by ChatGPT) displays responses alongside traditional results on desktop, with a moderate impact on search behavior.
- Google SGE (powered by Gemini) is currently in beta but offers a more radical experience, placing AI-generated responses above traditional results. Its potential impact is high to extreme.
- Standalone chatbots like ChatGPT and Google Gemini (formerly Bard) also display links to external websites, but their overall impact on standard (Bing/Google) search traffic is currently low.
How do I optimize my website for AI search results?
While the exact mechanisms behind AI ranking are still under development, here are 4 AI optimizations to consider:
- Content clarity and authority: Chatbots favor content from well-defined, reputable sources.
- Structured data: Leverage schema markup to enhance content understanding.
- Backlinks, citations and web references: Mentions from other websites remain important.
- Search intent: Align content with top-performing search types (informational, navigational, commercial, transactional).
4 ways to start optimizing your content for AI
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