How Will Machine Learning Affect SEO?

By now, most savvy business owners have a grasp of the SEO basics. Even if you consider yourself one of the well-informed, SEO best practices change all the time. There are even innovations that can disrupt the entire cycle. Machine learning is quickly becoming a disruptor in the world of SEO. Just when you thought you had a firm grasp on the practice, automation has the potential to turn it on its head.

Here’s how we think machine learning will affect SEO, and what you can do about it:

Machine Learning and Link Building
Machine learning plays a powerful role in enhancing Google’s capabilities by interpreting and reacting to data at incredible speeds. One of the areas where this will impact SEO most is in link building. Instead of building lists of spam sites and blocking them manually, machine learning can more readily recognize cues and ferret out spam sites based on patterns. For example, they’ll learn the types of sites spam sites link to, the patterns in link growth, and specific paid link sites. Applying these metrics will more effectively aid people using Google search and will naturally devalue spam.

From an SEO perspective, this makes quality link building more relevant than ever. Be sure to only link to quality, reputable, and relevant sources.

How Will This Affect Content Generation?
We all know that quality content is king. Machine learning has the potential to offer content marketers the keys to the kingdom – as long as they use the right approach.
Machine learning essentially allows Google to master and understand the subtle nuances of language, even dialect. This means it will also better understand keyword jamming and choppy copy. Soon, a content marketer’s job won’t be to peddle keywords and usher a website to the top of the website results – it will be to satisfy user intent, plain and simple. In other words, SEO will increasingly focus on who has the best answer to the question at hand – not just on who’s talking about it.

The Bottom Line
As search engine algorithms change, expect SEO practices to continue to evolve. Since machine learning isn’t without its flaws, we’re sure to see stumbles and pitfalls along the way. Still, this is a potentially exciting time for content marketers, as we shift the focus from pleasing Google to pleasing the potential user. By answering customer questions and establishing thought leadership in marketing efforts, you’ll naturally improve your SEO.

Let us know at SteerPoint how we can help with your SEO.