The Rise of the Machines: How A.I. Changes the Game for SEO

The Rise of the Machines: How A.I. Changes the Game for SEO

If there’s one thing that we should take away from all of Hollywood’s famous artificial intelligence (A.I.) films like Ex Machina (2015), Her (2013), and Bicentennial Man (1999), it’s that machines evolve – at an alarming rate at that – infinitely faster than the smartest human to walk the face of the Earth.

In reality, A.I. isn’t as scary as it sounds. Although it might be interesting to see an eerie mimicry of human consciousness before our very eyes, the technology of today hasn’t gotten that far (yet).

The Era of Complexity

Google’s latest A.I. learning machine algorithm called RankBrain is currently the talk of the town. We could think of so many genius inventions of Google given a number of technological inventions they’ve brought into the market in the last decade, but for search engine optimization (SEO), RankBrain completely changes the game.

In 2013, Google released Hummingbird, a search platform designed to focus on understanding natural language. RankBrain, an artificial narrow intelligence (ANI) system, is twice as intelligent as its predecessor with a back propagation strategy built with “deep learning” capabilities. This suggests that Google has found a more efficient way to distinguish a trustworthy website from a fishy one just by breezing through a bunch of words on a page.

Mastering the Algorithm of Human Beings


There are two specific things that RankBrain focuses on. One of them is user intent. Since the ANI strives to serve human beings better, it isn’t surprising that it wants to think like one.

Part of the new system’s magic as an ANI is its ability to monitor and gather data from the behavior of internet users while using that information to improve itself. ANIs have been on the World Wide Web for the longest time, yet we’ve only really noticed them in larger scales such as Google Translate, “recommended for you” features on famous brand websites and self-driving cars.

It’s all about understanding user intent and the users themselves. Unlike Google’s older systems, RankBrain understands that each user is different and valuable in boosting the ranks of a website. Your engagement with the computer screen is what ANIs are hungry for – this algorithm is what makes RankBrain a game changer.


Beating the Limelight

The second SEO bait for Google’s RankBrain is the quality of content. Following the creation of RankBrain, the job of an SEO writer also gets a little bit more difficult. It will be almost impossible to get away with measly content nowadays. And that’s a good thing.

This just means that both websites and SEO specialists no longer settle for mediocrity. The better the content is, the higher the chances of brands to gain traffic. It’s a win-win for everybody.

SEO has come a long way since writers slathered keywords all over badly written articles to climb the ranks. RankBrain learns and digests patterns, giving penalties to websites once it notices something suspicious about their content.

What websites need to do is write more complex, substantial content that Google will want to recommend to users. When you think of creating content, don’t think in numbers – write with the reader experience in mind. No matter what happens to that one piece you wrote, whether it flies the ranks or not, a user will stumble upon it later on anyway. A reader who likes your content will share it no matter how old it is.

Keep striving for excellent content. Once your website hits the top of the ranks, you’ll realize it was worth the hard work.

The Expanding Intelligence of Technology

Today’s technologies leave no more room for loopholes and half-baked work, but we still can’t say they’ve surpassed human reason. While tech snobs may say that RankBrain is still a weak form of AI, the speed of technology’s advances can turn Google’s new system into something completely incomprehensible to the human brain. The internet is a competitive space, and its systems will continue to evolve.

Using the Law of Accelerating Returns, you can say there’s no turning back for SEO – it only gets better from here. This doesn’t mean we can’t win the game.

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