Search, like we know it, will change


We humans are people who love to stick to our habits and what we are used to. So even when in the last year change was all over the internet with the advances AI made, we still stick to our patterns.

But it was always like this, until the day we just change and can’t understand how we could live without it. Or can you still remember a time when you didn’t even have internet on your phone? I definitely can.

But what does this have to do with search? A lot more than you might think.

How we search today, and why

When search engines first appeared and we began using them, it was all about entering the correct keywords to find the best answer. Typing a question often meant you couldn’t find what you were looking for.

Not long ago, I had a conversation with my father who needed help using Google. He said, “Don’t tell me, I know, I’m an old person typing in my complete questions. Nobody searches like this.” This really got me thinking.

Why do we search using keywords? Because search engines now can process a lot more than they could 15 years ago. If I ask a question, I will get an answer. But we still search in very unnatural ways.

However, that’s the generation that grew up with all this, not how the new generation searches for something. My brother, who is 13 years younger than me, already uses the internet differently than I do.

The search of the future

Still, we’re used to searching with keywords, and it feels natural to us. Nobody really thinks about typing out whole questions, except when we’re interacting with a Chat, like ChatGPT.

Why do we communicate differently with AI? Because the responses are different. We get full sentences, ideas, and it feels more like talking to a person than just searching.

Although we don’t yet know when Google will fully integrate SGE (their chatbot in search) for everyone’s use, we can be sure that this day will come, and the change in how we search will follow naturally.

Once we realize that Google might provide us with conversational answers, we’ll start to write in full sentences, or even use voice search to ask questions. Maybe the breakthrough that everyone expected from voice search will arrive a bit later, now that we’re learning to search in complete sentences.

What will happen with SEO than?

We’ve been moving away from strict keywords in the SEO industry for the last few years. Some say the new focus is on Entities, and we should completely forget about Keywords. I’m not entirely convinced of this, because keywords still provide a wealth of information.

What you do with keyword research is analyze the data available from people searching on Google. These searches are still valid, even though the specific keywords might evolve in the future.

What’s important, and will become even more so with upcoming changes, is to view keywords as “flexible.” They are useful for generating ideas about the questions and problems people might have. However, the approach will shift from focusing on “Main” and “Secondary” Keywords to a “topic” approach.

As keywords become more long-tail, the significance of search volume will undergo a major shift. While many SEOs currently optimize primarily for high-volume keywords, in the future, there will be a greater need for flexibility in deciding which pages to create. This will involve considering a variety of search terms people use to find the same answer.

Search intent, SERP Overlap, and the analysis of search results will become increasingly crucial. The overall strategy will surpass any best practices, which is already happening today, though not widely recognized.

So will we still optimize websites in the future for Search?

Simple answer: Yes, we will.

Optimizing your website for search today isn’t the same as it was 10 years ago. Nowadays, what we’re really doing is optimizing your website for the user. It’s not just about ticking off the right boxes. It involves thinking about your target audience, your ideal buyer, and how to reach them. It’s about understanding what they need and what they expect to find on your website.

And this will remain just as important in the future as it is today. Using language that resonates with your perfect customer, answering the questions they need answers to in order to be convinced, and making the website easy to navigate and a pleasure to use will never become outdated. At least, as long as we continue to use websites.

As for what will happen the day we stop using the internet as we know it, I can’t predict. However, I can assure you that such a change won’t happen overnight. We’ll be prepared and will know what to do in advance when that day comes.

Dani Leitner avatar


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