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Search Engine Optimization and AI Optimization: What is the Difference?

Search Engine Optimization and AI Optimization: What is the Difference?

The digital content guru Neil Patel has officially done the work we all needed, to reveal data-backed trends on AI search results. Why? Because AI optimization is the next big thing in content marketing. After all, ChatGPT is now the 28th most popular site in the world. For marketing teams that have been plagued by the random pop-in asking, “How is our SEO?...” - what is the difference between search engine optimization and AI optimization? 

How do AI Platforms Choose Your Website in Search Results? 

Neil Patel and his team worked with a data analyst to analyze 82 factors but found 6 of them to have a strong correlation: 

  • Brand Mentions  
  • Positive Reviews 
  • Keyword Relevancy 
  • Age 
  • Recommendations (Backlinks)
  • Domain Authority 

Do these sound familiar? If you’re a content marketer or anyone with experience in SEO, I should hope they do. These are essentially the exact same factors that we consider for Search Engine Optimization. So, good news marketing teams, if you have been focusing on your SEO strategy, you do not have to scramble or stretch yourselves thin to add another focus. Rather, you are knocking out two birds with one stone. Nothing better than getting the chance to recycle your content marketing. 

If you or your team would like help working on your content marketing, SEO, or AI optimization strategy, let’s talk

So, what is the Difference Between SEO and AI Optimization?

The primary differences between search engine optimization and AI optimization seem to be the following: 

End-User Experience 

There are heavy changes on the user experience side. For instance, how we ask questions as users and how the systems provide answers feel very different. I mean, you can ask AI platforms what information they would like to know to provide better results. Take a big backseat on that one, traditional search engines. 

Because any kind of content optimization is driven by the user, this will likely trickle into changes in SEO and AI optimization strategies. Do users frame questions or requests differently on these platforms than they do in a Google search bar? If so, we will need to meet them there. 

Real-Time & Location-Based Searches in AI Platforms 

Does any of this sound familiar “food near me,” “restaurants near me,” “barbers near me,” or “[insert word here] near me?” That is because near me searches are one of the most used search structures worldwide. 

Take a look at near me search relevancy worldwide over the last year... 

 Near Me Interest Score

However, these kinds of searches cause two issues with most AI platforms, including ChatGPT. They do not have access to real-time information, and they do not have access to your location (at least, they say they don’t).  


AI Near Me Search

If local SEO plays a part in your marketing strategy, then AI is not going to play a big part, yet. Search engines still hold a monopoly on this part of the user search experience. So, for those that say SEO is dead, not quite. Close to dead? Sure. 

For those looking to explore SEO or AI optimization, our Digital Marketing Agency offers extensive expertise in content marketing optimization, from strategy to execution. Don't hesitate to reach out to us today and discover how we can empower your organization with content marketing that makes an impact. Contact us.