Search Generative Experience: How Google’s AI Search Engine Impacts SEO & Organic Traffic

Illustration of a search box and the term Search Generative Experience
Artificial intelligence is disrupting the digital market landscape and isn’t going away. That’s why your business must invest in SGE to meet your audience where they are when looking for information online.

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Search generative experience (SGE) is Google’s AI search engine. Chances are you may have interacted with it before. But do you know how this impacts your business’s SEO and organic traffic? Adapting your SEO marketing strategies to automated technologies is essential as they influence user online behavior and algorithms. 

SGE Google has different features than its standard search engine. AI-generated results empower SERPs by using advanced systems to understand human language and legacy algorithms more clearly.

However, it doesn’t replace traditional SEO. Google’s standard algorithms and SGE work together to deliver the best search results possible.

Artificial intelligence is disrupting the digital market landscape and isn’t going away. That’s why your business must invest in SGE to meet your audience where they are when looking for information online. 

Here’s a complete guide to search generative experience and how to optimize your SEO strategies with SGE to drive organic traffic.

What is SGE?

Example image of a product search with SGE results

People commonly ask, “What is Google SGE?” You may have heard of ChatGPT. SGE Google and ChatGPT are similar since they’re both AI learning tools that users can interact with conversationally for automated results. The difference is that ChatGPT is an AI-generated content-writing platform, and SGE is an AI-empowered search engine.

SGE vs. SERP: What’s the Difference?

Search generative experience and search engine results page (SERP) are both part of the search experience. SERPs are the pages Google displays in response to a user’s queries on a traditional search engine. SGE is Google’s AI search engine. It’s more experimental by using automated learning models and algorithms to deliver more relevant results.

For example, SGE offers a more tailored experience for ad space. If you’re shopping online, SERPs often display rich results like product ad listings and reviews. SGE takes it further by showing you the same results, yet with more information. It includes follow-up questions, important product considerations, ad links, styling options, and more, all in one place.

SGE allows users to dive deeper into their online shopping experience. It displays snapshots of everything they need to know about a product in one location—instead of entering multiple search queries and clicking on multiple sites to learn more.

Google Search Generative Experience Features

Image of Generative AI search results

Now that you have a general overview of SGE Google, next is understanding its unique features. With many advanced capabilities, it can improve your SEO performance and the bottom line. Here’s how:

AI-Powered Snapshots

AI-generated overviews of topics you’re searching to provide helpful information quickly. It gives you access to more diverse content like retailers, publishers, and businesses.

Follow-Ups

Users can ask follow-up questions in a conversational tone to gain context and refine their search results more easily. This feature allows you to explore deeper into the topics you’re interested in with related insights and web page descriptions to learn more.

Product and Local SEO Experience

Snapshot overviews of products and Google Business Profile listings. E-commerce and local businesses can benefit from this feature by leveraging AI to create demand. It displays reviews, customer ratings, related information, and product images to influence faster purchase decisions in one centralized location.

Search Ads Experience

These are dedicated ad slots to provide more helpful information while promoting your business online. Users can also use product images they find on social media, blogs, and more to locate where they can buy them online. It directs consumers to product pages and shopping ads based on the image screenshot they enter.

This provides a seamless search ad experience when they don’t need to go on a hunt on where to buy items they’re interested in if they only have photos available.

Image Generation

AI-generated images help streamline visual marketing concept ideas and creative inspiration for your business. It’s like your automated graphic designer that creates any image you describe.

E-commerce brands can benefit greatly from this feature since customers can generate images of the ideal products they want and be navigated to the real versions of them. SGE Google links to related shopping ads or product pages based on the generative image search information consumers enter.

Image of ECommerce website on a mobile phone

Common Concerns Businesses Have About Search Generative Experience

If SGE Google delivers a more tailored and automated search experience, why would users continue using traditional search engines? Business owners often think that SGE SEO will replace standard SEO. Here’s why that’s not the case and why you should integrate search generative experience into your SEO strategies instead.

SGE Concern: Taking Organic Traffic Away Your Website

Businesses commonly think that AI will replace digital marketing, especially now with SGE SEO. It’s understandable to fear that SGE will take away your organic traffic since users no longer need to visit websites for information when everything they need is in one place—making traditional SEO obsolete.

SGE Google cannot exist without humans. That’s why optimizing your site for SGE SEO is a necessary addition, not a replacement.

SGE Solution: Writing Quality Content for Google AI Search

Google search generative experience relies on human-written content to provide results. It takes your online information and displays it together while linking to the original content it generated from. SGE relies on people for it to exist. So, if your business stops creating content, it won’t have information to pull from.

Writing content for SGE Google makes it a helpful feature for business growth because it supercharges SEO.

Search generative experience only works because people enable it to!

How SGE Google Impacts SEO and Organic Traffic

While SGE doesn’t replace SEO, it does impact it. According to a study, 62.8% of SGE packs didn’t exactly match the content or keyword ranking of traditional local packs—including branded and nonbranded keywords.

There’s no standardization across SGE and SERPs. For this reason, local businesses should reconsider their keyword research and local SEO strategies for SGE separately. SGE packs don’t always match local packs, even if the search intent is obvious.

That’s why researching the SERPs and auditing SGE engines for target keywords is necessary for your SEO marketing strategy. If your business doesn’t adapt to AI generative search, you can miss ranking for local search queries that users are looking for.

In addition to local SEO, here’s how search generative experience impacts SEO and organic traffic in general.

Improves Organic Traffic Predictions

SGE Google is also a helpful analytics tool to measure your website’s SEO performance. Its impact analysis model provides organic traffic predictions by comparing them to your current traffic data. This framework predicts which keywords are most likely to increase and decrease your site’s traffic, including how much.

Strengthens SEO Performance

When you can analyze which keywords may be responsible for decreasing your website’s organic traffic, you can better optimize it before it’s impacted. By mitigating SGE risks that predict which keywords may be attributed to your organic traffic, you can strengthen your site’s SEO performance from an unexpected drop.

Identifies Strategic Keywords

Identifying the keywords impacting Google SGE’s organic traffic predictions the most can help your business rank better in SGE. Target keywords valuable to your business may not rank in SGE snapshot carousels as they might do in the top traditional SERPs. Keyword performance for SGE and SERPs may have different ranks.

With the SGE impact model, you can know which keywords you can’t afford to lose and which ones may be negatively impacting your SEO performance. By finding keywords contributing the most to organic traffic, you can strategically select better ones to optimize.

Streamlines SEO Efforts

When users can ask complex and descriptive questions more easily, they can understand topics or shop faster. Taking SGE’s suggested next steps or asking follow-up questions streamlines your SEO efforts because it’s less manual work for consumers to find relevant content. They’ll have all the information about your site in snapshot overviews to learn more.

How to Optimize Your Website for SGE Google

Image of Google Settings for SGE

The first step to optimizing your website for SGE SEO is knowing how to get Google AI search first. Below is a step-by-step guide on how to access, download, and enable Google search generative experience.

  1. Go to Google Seach Labs and join the waitlist to get access to limited-time experiments as an early tester. These features include “Add to Sheets,” where you can insert search results directly into spreadsheets, and Code Tips to automate programming language writing.
  2. Google will send you an email when you’re off the waitlist.
  3. Once you get Search Labs access, you can download Google AI search onto your Google Chrome browser with Incognito Mode turned off.
  4. Click the New Tab at the top of the browser.
  5. Click the Labs icon at the top right of the page.
  6. Turn the experiment on by clicking the slider on the top of the SGE card.

You must sign up and in with a personal Google account as it’s currently not available to Google Workspace.

Image of SGE Browsing Examples

It may take time for SGE features to show up. Try doing some searches to see if it triggers AI-powered overviews—remember, these won’t always be available. Depending on your queries and the information available, SGE may or may not be triggered to deliver the best results possible.

You can also check if your experiments are on by clicking “Ask a follow-up” under the “Overview” section. Google suggests asking questions about a topic with different angles to consider. They recommend finding a range of relevant information, options, or viewpoints.

Once the experiments are available, you can begin optimizing your site for SGE Google. Here’s how:

Create High-Quality E-E-A-T Content

Did you know that Google recently added a second “E” to the now E-E-A-T framework? The second E stands for experience. This latest update shows that writing E-E-A-T content is essential since SGE is held to a higher standard for information quality.

The original E-A-T standard was expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness. It’s how Google evaluates if their search ranking systems are providing helpful and relevant information. With updated search rater guidelines, Google now prioritizes the importance of original and helpful content for users that can be explained in various formats and sources.

Examples of low-quality E-E-A-T content include:

  • Web pages with misleading titles unrelated to the content
  • Pages that disguise ads as site navigation links
  • Copied or scraped content from other sites without adding original content or value
  • Keyword-stuffing content that doesn’t read naturally to people
  • Surface level details that force users to search more to find better information

Here’s to write high-quality E-E-A-T content:

  • Create helpful content with your audience in mind. Provide insightful analysis with original information that’s relevant to the topic. 
  • Avoid copying and only rewriting content from external sources. Link to them, but add substantial value with a new perspective or educate further.
  • Write titles and headings as a descriptive summary of the page’s content. Users should be able to quickly scroll through your content structure and know what it’s about.
  • Make your content easily readable. Use small paragraphs of no more than four sentences with helpful visuals that support the content. Avoid fluff, irrelevant information, and unedited AI content writing.
  • Keep search intent in mind. Don’t spam users with sales promotions if you’re creating informational blog content on a specific subject.

E-E-A-T content creation is about providing an overall great page experience. Google rewards websites that provide this because you’re creating people-first content while demonstrating that you’re a trustworthy authority and expert in your niche.

Focus on the Most Important Keyword Rankings First

Sitewide SGE audits and optimization can seem daunting. Start by identifying the most important keyword rankings you can’t afford to lose first. Then audit one page at a time for an organized process of SGE recovery.

After conducting an SGE analysis, record your high-impact keywords, and optimize your existing pages with them. Then, rerun your SGE impact analysis to measure its new SGE SEO performance. Check if you’ve reduced the number of lost keyword predictions to ensure you’re on the right track.

Invest in a Solid Link building Strategy

Backlinks are arguably the most important ranking factor in SEO. Go above cold email link acquisition with solid linkbuilding strategies. Try offering social media shoutouts, podcast interviews, email newsletter blasts, and free link exchanges to offer a higher value in return.

This helps show Google search generative experience that you’re creating high-quality E-E-A-T content.

Review Your User Experience (UX)

If users have difficulty navigating your website, SGE optimization won’t be impactful if they can’t find what they need. Signs of poor user experience (UX) include high bounce rates, slow page load speed, and complex mobile design. When performing SGE audits, review your UX to prevent pushing traffic away when users click through SGE into your site.

Optimize Your Site’s Metadata

SGE and SERP rely on metadata to better understand your site’s content because it’s written in search engine language. If Google can’t properly crawl your site through metadata, it won’t generate in SGE to consumers using relevant queries.

Here’s how to optimize your site’s metadata:

  • Write valuable and enticing meta descriptions for each web page to engage users to click through, like hook statements and calls to action.
  • Include target keywords in your title tags, page content, and headings naturally, without over-optimizing. Don’t force keywords into your copy if it doesn’t sound right out loud.
  • Create image alt tag descriptions with target and secondary keywords for audience accessibility.

Remember, if Google can’t find your site, your audience and SGE won’t either.

Elevate Your Business’s Google Search Generative Experience

Transforming your business’s online presence for SGE Google is a must with evolving AI technologies. At Reach Marketing Pro, we have extensive experience with SEO optimization, including on-page, off-page, technical, local, SEM, and SGE.

We also focus on website functionality for a stronger user experience because SEO isn’t only about climbing Google’s ranks. Our team takes your site’s information and products to optimize it with your business’s SEO goals and branding in mind.

While we do all the work, we keep you informed throughout the optimization process and provide monthly performance reports to measure and track success.

Ready for your business to be an early adapter of AI search?

Contact us to take the first step into your Google search generative experience today!

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