The AI snapshot offers concise paragraphs of AI-generated content along with relevant links to support the provided information. It also includes a set of follow-up questions to encourage users to delve deeper into the topic. Users can also switch to a view that presents individual sentences from the snapshot, each linked to the source material.
How will this change affect B2B marketers?
For B2B marketers, this development presents a mixed bag of opportunities and challenges. The inclusion of website results in the AI-powered snapshot is a positive sign, indicating that Google aims to direct valuable traffic to websites within the generative AI framework.
This means that by positioning your B2B brand as an authority, Google is likely to call upon your content as a reputable source in the new ‘three tabs’ setup as above.
However, it's important to note that the traditional blue links will be pushed further down the page, resulting in reduced visibility and potentially lower click-through rates for phrases that trigger an AI result. For some phrases, the top three reference links will effectively become the new pinnacle of search results.
Is this applicable to all phrases?
It's worth highlighting that AI-generated answers won't be applicable to all search queries. During the keynote, Google demonstrated the AI's focus on long-tail keywords, product comparisons, and research-oriented inquiries. Transactional searches, for now, are unlikely to be affected - good news for B2B type searches.
The current state of play
While the trial phase is currently limited to specific platforms and regions, Google plans to expand access to its Search generative experience (SGE) in the near future. Google is actively accepting testers at this stage, with some marketing agencies and consultants gaining early access to test the SGE experience. The rest of us wait eagerly for the changes to be formally rolled out. Businesses should closely monitor these developments and consider early access opportunities to stay ahead in the changing B2B marketing landscape.
How will PPC be affected?
Considering search ads, which are a substantial revenue source for Google, there are concerns about the impact of these changes. However, the released screenshots indicate that sponsored ads will still have visibility beneath the AI snapshot, enabling advertisers to engage with users during their search journey.
Will this affect my investment in SEO?
Click-through rates from Google Search results to your B2B website are potentially reducing, thus ramping up the competition for those coveted top spots. The importance of great SEO is even more important. As a result as effectively, there will be fewer clicks to go around. We can expect SEO costs to increase as companies double down on great SEO.
In conclusion, B2B businesses need to keep a close eye on the changes and, if needed, proactively adapt their marketing strategies in response to Google's AI search results. While presenting challenges, this shift also opens new avenues for businesses to capture valuable traffic and engagement should they look to position the business as a leading voice in their field. Embracing these changes and optimising content accordingly will be crucial for success in the evolving B2B marketing landscape.
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This post was written by:
Steve is co-owner of Tiga Creative Marketing
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