As if March’s Helpful Content and Spam algorithm changes weren’t enough, Google has announced the launch of its AI-powered search engine – Google Search Generative Experience (SGE).

Organic search volatility hasn’t waned since March’s updates and the latest launch is poised to significantly change information ecosystems and digital economies.

Since the initial announcement of SGE (formerly Google Magi) in March 2023, Bamboo has kept tabs on the coming changes and understands what needs to be done if websites want to rank in the AI era.

Let’s break down what SGE means for the future of organic search.

What is Google Search Generative Experience (SGE)?

Previously known as the Google Magi Project, Google SGE is an advanced feature that infuses artificial intelligence (AI) into organic search. It aims to provide users with a more comprehensive and contextually relevant search experience.

Unlike traditional search, which displayed ranked list of page results, SGE generates more nuanced and informative responses directly within the search engine results page (SERP).

Image source: https://blog.google/products/search/generative-ai-search/

This includes summarising information from various sources, answering complex questions in natural (human-like) language, and offering a more interactive search experience.

SGE is a shift away from keyword-based search results. Instead, Google and, equally, Microsoft ChatGPT (Edge) move to a more intent-driven search experience. Google’s transformation is powered by its AI models, which understand and interpret the nuance of user queries better than ever before.

As a result, users receive more accurate and immediate answers to their questions. This means no more digging through pages of results to find what you’re looking for.

How will Google SGE impact website traffic?

Be prepared, website traffic is going to be significantly impacted by Google SGE. Here are a few ways it will affect how users interact with search results:

  • Reduced Click-Through-Rates (CTRs): With more detailed answers provided directly on the search results page, users clicking through to websites will decrease dramatically.
  • High competition for featured snippets: As SGE often relies on content from featured snippets to generate its answers, securing these positions will become even more crucial. Websites that consistently appear in these snippets are likely to benefit from increased visibility.
  • Increased importance of high-quality content: Google’s AI will prioritise content that is well-researched, authoritative, and relevant. Websites with high-quality content will likely be featured in SGE responses, driving traffic, and improving brand credibility.
  • Enhanced user experience: While SGE might reduce traffic, it can improve user satisfaction and trust in the information provided. This can lead to longer-term benefits such as improved brand reputation and higher engagement rates.
  • Reduced search result visibility: SGE’s new UI takes up a lot of real estate on the results page. This means a significant reduction in the available search results on what was ‘page one’. This will further reduce website traffic and increase competition in available slots.

How to adapt website content to rank for Google SGE

The launch of Google SGE didn’t exactly come as a surprise. Over a year ago, we were warned that Google would implement AI into its search engine functionality and that a new UI was coming.

Team Bamboo began preparing in advance to make sure the impact on our client’s websites was minimised. Here’s how to adapt your website for Google SGE:

  1. Create in-depth SEO-focused content: Focus on producing helpful, relevant, comprehensive content that thoroughly covers topics. Google’s AI favours content that provides detailed, accurate answers to user queries.
  2. Focus on user intent: Understand what your audience is looking for and tailor your content to meet those needs. Use tools like Google Search Console and keyword research to identify commonly asked questions for your industry or vertical.
  3. Clearly structure your content: Use clear headings, subheadings, bullet points, and numbered lists (like in this blog) to make your content easy to read and understand. Well-structured content is more likely to be featured in snippets and SGE responses.
  4. Implement structured data markup: Use structured data markup (schema) on your website. Schema organises information in the backend of a website. It includes terms such as: people, places, events, products, etc. It helps define your website’s data in a way that search engines understand. Using schema data enhances SEO by making web pages more understandable to search engines. This will potentially increase your SGE visibility and website traffic.

  5. Boost your E-E-A-T (Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness): Build your website’s domain authority by showcasing expert authors, citing reputable sources, and earning backlinks from authoritative websites. Google prioritises content from trustworthy sources.
  6. Engage on high-authority Q&A sites: Aim to have your expert content featured on well-known Q&A forums such as Quora and Reddit. Google SGE frequently sources these sites in its AI overviews. By contributing high-quality, industry-specific content on these sites, you can increase your visibility within AI-generated search results.
  7. Monitor and adapt: Keep an eye on your website analytics to track traffic patterns and user behaviour changes. Be ready to adjust your content strategy based on these insights and SGE’s evolution.

Be SGE-ready with Team Bamboo

Navigating the complexities of Google SGE can be daunting. So often, people ask us why they have to change content because of Google. Unfortunately, in the internet (and now AI) age, to be seen you must comply with the latest requirements.

We’re here to help. As a leading digital and content marketing agency, we offer a range of services designed to optimise your online presence and ensure your website thrives in SGE.

Content strategy development

Our team of expert content strategists will help you create a robust content plan that aligns with user intent and maximises your chances of ranking in SGE. We conduct thorough keyword research, competitive analysis, and audience insights to craft content that stands out from the crowd.

SEO optimisation

Team Bamboo is adept at implementing the latest best practices to enhance your website’s visibility. From on-page optimisation and technical SEO to link-building, we ensure your site meets Google’s criteria for high-quality content.

Structured data implementation

We assist in adding structured data markup to your website, helping search engines understand your content better. This increases your chances of appearing in rich results and SGE responses.

Analytics and reporting

Providing comprehensive analytics and reporting is standard with Team Bamboo. This gives clients valuable insights into their website’s performance. We track key metrics, analyse user behaviour and offer actionable recommendations to improve content strategies.

Ongoing support and adaptation

Organic search is evolving. From AI to regular algorithm changes, businesses need to be informed and ready to adapt when digital shifts happen. Staying ahead requires constant effort—and it’s time-consuming. Team Bamboo offers ongoing support to adapt your marketing strategy as needed, ensuring your website remains competitive in the face of new developments like SGE.

Understanding and adapting to Google SGE will help ensure your website stays visible and valuable to users in the digital space. Partnering with us means you can confidently navigate these ongoing changes and continue to thrive online.

Want to chat about SGE’s impact on your brand? Get in touch. We’re happy to help.