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Google Bard: How would it change SEO?
What is Google Bard?
Before taking this any further, watch this Google video introducing Bard:
Google is developing Bard, an experimental conversational AI service powered by LaMDA. This innovative tool combines the vast knowledge available on the internet with the intelligence and creativity of Google's extensive language models. The development of Bard was first announced two years ago when Google unveiled its advanced language and conversation capabilities using LaMDA. Now, Google is taking another step forward in its development by releasing it to a select group of trusted testers before making it available to the public shortly. Bard's primary goal is to provide high-quality responses by drawing on information from the internet. It also serves as a source of creativity and inspiration for users to explore their curiosity.
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In the words of Sundar Pichai, the CEO of Alphabet:
"Soon, you'll see AI-powered features in search that distill complex information and multiple perspectives into easy-to-digest formats, so you can quickly understand the big picture and learn more from the web: whether that's seeking out additional perspectives, like blogs from people who play both piano and guitar, or going deeper on a related topic, like steps to get started as a beginner. These new AI features will begin rolling out on Google Search soon."
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How does Google Bard work?
Google Bard operates by using LaMDA, which is built on the Transformer neural network architecture. A lighter version of LaMDA, which consumes fewer computer resources, will be used in the initial iteration of Bard to enable it to accommodate a large number of people. To deliver its responses, Bard will draw upon all the information available on the internet in conjunction with LaMDA, resulting in fresh and high-quality answers, as per an official announcement by Google. On the other hand, Chat GPT based on GPT-3 is an autoregressive transformer model with 175 billion parameters.
How would Bard's implementation in Google Search influence SERP?
Implementation of Google Bard in SERP
As Bard gets integrated into Google search, there could be significant changes that may influence search results. Currently, a substantial percentage of Google searches result in no clicks to other web properties, and this could increase if Bard provides quick answers to short factual questions. There might be a decrease in clicks for simple queries requiring straightforward answers. From a marketing perspective, an SEO campaign aims to provide quality content beyond generic information and genuinely helps the searcher. The website's experience, quality, and authority would be essential in this regard.
However, Google's main objective is to provide better quality answers that meet users' search intent while keeping publishers satisfied. Thus, even if Bard answers quick questions, there is still a good chance for websites to get traffic. For transactional intent keywords, SEO will still play a vital role, and in the B2B space, there are opportunities to attract website traffic.
According to Sundar Pichai, Alphabet's CEO, AI-powered search features will soon distill complex information and multiple perspectives into easy-to-digest formats. After Bard's answer, there is usually a list of articles that complement the solution, which provides more opportunities to get traffic.
If Google implements the same layout as Bing on the desktop, there would still be sufficient opportunities to get website clicks. In summary, while Bard's integration could lead to fewer clicks for simple queries, websites still have opportunities to attract traffic with quality content and complementary articles.
While Bard's quick answers satisfy some searchers, others may want to learn more about a topic, which is where quality content comes into play. Publishers must focus on providing in-depth information and unique perspectives that cater to the searcher's intent. This approach increases the chances of getting clicks and helps establish the website's authority in the industry.
While integrating Bard into Google search could lead to fewer clicks for simple queries, there are still opportunities for websites to attract traffic with quality content, complementary articles, and an engaging user experience. By staying ahead of the curve and adapting to the changes in search, publishers can continue to thrive and provide valuable information to users. Always have a proper digital marketing funnel in place.
ChatGPT VS Google Bard
While ChatGPT can provide accurate data until 2021, it loses the race in providing the latest information. Bard, powered by Google's LaMDA (Language Model for Dialogue Applications), aims to bridge this gap. To reach a larger audience and receive more feedback, Bard is being released with a lightweight model version of LaMDA. Google plans to gather feedback from external users and combine it with internal testing to ensure that Bard's responses meet high standards and are based on real-world information.
What does the introduction of these AI assistants mean for SEO?
Bard or ChatGPT can assist in answering queries during a search, which could lead to lesser clicks to your website. It could be compared to Google's attempt to provide a better user experience and more information through its Knowledge Graph. And, just like the increase in adoption rate for virtual assistants like Alexa and Siri, these AI assistants could surely steal clicks, but if we look from a long-term perspective from branding to sales, SEO would still be the game changer. There is no denial of that.
At the same time, if you closely try to look into the questions that Bard or ChatGPT addresses are typically informational and are less likely to result in direct sales. Now, we have an entire concept of brand building and increasing customer touch points by bringing them to our website. Still, if the searcher is looking for direct answers to a query and has to scan your entire page to find a short answer, the entire process needs an update.
Many of you might think these are, after all, taking away some of our clicks. But, there would be more new opportunities that we could consider to improve the overall user experience.
For example, let's talk about the fear factor that everyone had around voice searches and everybody sweating over that now no one will click on any links and find answers directly using voice searches.
But, instead of things going in the wrong direction, we saw the growth of voice search and voice commerce and how many opportunities it brought for us. If we talk about the value in literal revenue, voice commerce is projected to generate nearly $20 billion in revenue. It is also worth noting that 9.7% of desktop searches and 10.3% of mobile searches click through to other Google properties, such as shopping or images, while 17.9% of desktop and 29.3% of mobile searches refine their keyword search. While zero-click investigations have been present and will continue, it is essential to acknowledge that Google has been directing more traffic to external websites yearly.
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Frequently Asked Questions:
1. What questions did Google Bard get wrong?
In its initial preview demonstration on February 6, 2023, Google Bard made a mistake while answering a question about recent discoveries made by the James Webb Space Telescope. It confidently claimed that it was the first to capture an image of an exoplanet outside our solar system when such an event occurred many years earlier. This blunder by Google Bard received severe backlash and drew comparisons with some of the weaknesses of ChatGPT. As a result, Google's stock price fell down.
2. How do I use Google Bard?
Currently, Google Bard is exclusively accessible to a restricted number of beta testers, but it is expected to have a wider release in the upcoming weeks and months. CEO Sundar Pichai had fast-tracked the development of Google Bard in early 2022, inspired by ChatGPT's successful advancement. With the continued positive press coverage that ChatGPT has obtained in 2023, it is anticipated that Bard will also make rapid progress. If you are not part of the lucky bunch of beta testers for Bard, then all you can do is wait for further updates from Google.
3. What does the acronym ChatGPT mean?
Chat generative pre-trained transformer
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