Are you curious about the performance of AI-generated content for SEO?
Look no further! In this blog post, I will share five case studies that showcase the success of AI content used as content marketing.
From ranking on competitive SEO terms to driving millions of organic clicks, these examples demonstrate how AI can be a valuable tool in your content creation strategy.
Case 1: Pages ranking on Technical SEO term
In the first case example, we see two out of ten pages ranking for the Danish term "teknisk seo" are generated with artificial intelligence (AI).
Despite the competition on this classic SEO term, both of these AI-generated pages are performing well without any clear penalty from Google [link] as they rank on page 1.
One of them is created with ChatGPT, while the other is made with the SEO.ai platform.
Both are easily identifiable as AI content by OpenAIs AI text classifier/detector.
While it is true that AI detectors have a harder time identifying other languages than English, and Google's algorithm and spam preventions may be less strict in non-English languages, these examples still showcase the potential of AI-generated content for SEO.
Case 2: Bankrate.com drives massive amounts of traffic with AI content
Moving on to a more prominent example, Bankrate.com is a well-established website that has been utilizing AI content for a longer period.
The website employs AI to create responses to inquiries that have specific limitations, like "What Is Contribution Margin?" or "What is Financial Liquidity?"
According to some estimates I have seen, Bankrate.com has been driving hundreds of thousands of visits every month from its AI-generated content. This is a testament to the success of AI content when done right.
One of the reasons for this success is the authority of the domain.
Bankrate.com has been around for decades, accumulating strong backlink profiles and establishing itself as a reputable source of information. This means that Google trusts its content and is more likely to rank it higher in search results.
Additionally, Bankrate.com employs subject matter experts to review and edit their AI-generated content before publishing.
This ensures that the content is fact-checked, corrected, streamlined, and sometimes slightly rewritten before it goes live. This human touch adds credibility and value to the content, making it more appealing to both users and search engines.
Bankrate also follows Google's policy on identifying AI-generated content, allowing users to easily identify it as such.
Case 3: Ranking on "Automatic Writing tools" with a classic wall-of-text AI content piece
In the second case study, we take a closer look at our own page targeting the keyword "Automatic Writing tools".
Despite ranking only at #10 for this keyword, the page is still on the coveted first page of the search results.
While the SEO score of the page may be decent, it might not necessarily meet the search intent of the users looking for this keyword.
The page presents itself as a wall-of-text, which may not be the most digestible format for users.
Additionally, the page lacks internal links, which could be improved to boost its ranking further, as well as an optimised title might help rankings (it was made before we released our feature for this).
Despite these shortcomings, the page is not penalized by Google's algorithm. Instead, it simply does not rank as highly as other pages that better meet the search intent for this keyword. This example goes to show that AI-generated content can still have a positive impact on SEO, even if it may not always result in a #1 ranking.
Case 4: 59% increase in CTR scores with AI made headlines
At TV 2 Fyn, a Danish news outlet, the use of AI-generated headlines has resulted in a 59% increase in click-through rates (CTR).
The outlet employed Open AI's ChatGPT chatbot to generate headlines for their articles, which were then A/B tested against human-generated headlines.
During the three-week testing period, ChatGPT was fed both whole articles and article summaries and asked to generate a number of potential headlines. If the initial suggestions did not work, adjustments were made until a suitable headline was found. The resulting headlines were then A/B tested using Chartbeat data to determine their success rate.
Interestingly, in 46% of the A/B tests conducted, the AI-generated headlines outperformed the human-generated ones.
This result suggests that AI-generated content can have a positive impact on CTR, and that it may be worthwhile for other news outlets to explore its use.
However, it's important to note that the study had a relatively small sample size, and more research is needed to make definitive conclusions about the effectiveness of AI-generated content.
Additionally, it should be noted that the original human-generated headlines had a slight advantage over the AI-generated ones, with a 51.2% success rate in A/B testing.
Case 5: Generating millions of visits with AI content at scale on new domain (unverified)
I recently came across an intriguing case study that claims to demonstrate the potential of AI-generated content on new domains.
According to the case study, Koray Gübür was able to generate millions of visits to a new domain using AI-generated content.
While the specifics of the domain and content are not disclosed, this case is worth exploring further as it suggests that AI-generated content can still perform on new domains.
The case study claims that Gübür used an AI tool to create content for a brand new domain. The AI tool was able to produce high-quality, unique content at scale, which Gübür then published on the domain. Within a short period of time, the domain began to receive significant traffic, ultimately resulting in millions of visits.
While the case study is intriguing, it's important to note that I have not been able to verify or audit this example. Nevertheless if true, this case study provides an interesting example of the potential for AI-generated content to drive traffic to new domains if its done at scale.
Case 6: Ranking with junk content thanks to domain authority
My colleague Daniel recently wrote about The Verge's use of AI-generated content to produce a blog post titled "Best printer 2023: just buy this Brother laser printer everyone has, it’s fine."
Despite the post being written entirely by ChatGPT, the page managed to rank highly on Google due to The Verge's high domain authority and strong backlink profile.
While the post was not meant to be taken seriously and was written in a sarcastic and humorous tone, it still managed to rank on a highly competitive search string.
This goes to show that domain authority and backlinks play a major role in search engine rankings, even for AI-generated content that may not be of high quality.
It's important to note, however, that content that does not meet the search intent of users most likely over time will not perform well, as Google is able to spot user signals (eg. users visiting the site and then leaving straight away again to go back and try another of the search results. This is also called pogo sticking in SEO terms.).
It is worth mentioning that content which fails to satisfy the search purpose of users is unlikely to succeed in the long run, as Google can detect signals from users (such as when they quickly leave the site and return to try a different search result, which is referred to as pogo sticking in SEO jargon).
Metrics used to measure AI content performance
When measuring the performance of AI-generated content, there are a few key metrics that can be used for measurement.
Firstly, rankings in the search engine results pages (SERPs) on different keywords can be a good indicator of how well the content is performing. If the AI-generated content is ranking highly for relevant keywords, it suggests that the content is resonating with users and is providing value.
Another important metric to consider is the amount of traffic, sessions and page views generated by the AI-generated content.
If access to the data is available, it's also possible to measure the success of AI-generated content in terms of conversions or time on site. If users are spending a long time on a website or are converting into customers at a high rate, it suggests that the content is providing value and is driving user engagement.
What factors impact the success of AI-driven content?
There are several factors that can impact the success of AI-driven content:
- Quality of the AI-generated content: The quality of the content produced by the AI tool will ultimately determine its success. If the content is poorly written or doesn't provide value to users, it's unlikely to perform well. Using the newest tools and LLMs like GPT4 [link] will ensure this.
- Relevance of the content: The content produced by the AI tool must be relevant to the target audience and provide them with useful information. If the content is off-topic or doesn't match the reader's intent, it's unlikely to perform well. Thats why keyword research and understandings search intents are crucial.
- Optimization for search engines: AI-generated content must be optimized for search engines to perform well in the SERPs. (note, thats why we built SEO.ai) This includes using relevant keywords, optimizing title tags and meta descriptions, and ensuring the content is structured properly.
- User engagement: Ultimately, the success of AI-generated content will be determined by how engaged users are with the content. If users are spending time on the page, sharing the content, and engaging with it in other ways, it's a sign that the content is resonating with them and providing value.
What types of cases might we see in the future?
We will for sure more cases in the future demonstrating the success of using AI in SEO and content generation. Some potential cases we might see in the future include:
- AI-generated social media content that leads to increased engagement and brand awareness
- Personalized AI-generated videos that drive higher conversion rates and customer retention
- AI-generated benchmark reports that provide valuable insights for businesses and industry professionals
- AI-generated reporting that helps journalists and media outlets quickly gather and analyze data for news stories.
Overall, the possibilities for using AI in content generation and SEO are endless, and we can expect to see more innovative use cases emerge as the technology continues to evolve.