After a two-year hiatus, Paul Warren and I have revived our SEO is Dead and Other Lies podcast and are going strong with the handful of episodes we’ve produced so far, barreling ahead to the coveted, triple-digit, 100-episode milestone. The digital landscape is much different than it was just a couple short years ago (if you can believe it, I can). After a series about local optimization and making the most of your Google Business Profile locations, we shifted into an overview of how MMM has been addressing the seemingly endless Google updates that started late last year and culminated heavily on exactly March 5th. I know this date well, it’s my father’s birthday, after all. You can listen to that podcast here.

The podcast is dense with information about what a content strategy looks like, especially for Your Money, Your Life websites like those pertaining to legal and dental. This includes paring down old content, updating current relevant content, providing the appropriate information to communicate to Google that you’re a relevant source…you get the picture. Because I found the topic to be especially relevant but believe in repurposing content, I thought it’d be a great use case for ChatGPT-4o, which just rolled out last week.

Leveraging AI Tools

I transcribed the recording using Otter.AI (which was free), copied and pasted the transcript into a Word Doc, and fed it into ChatGPT (also at no charge, at least the free version), with the request to summarize the transcription into a blog of about 800 words, with certain parameters for the tone.

This will likely develop into another article later on, but what’s most important about this output, which I would never put my name on—hence the reason I’m prefacing at length about its AI origins— is that the prompt itself is what really makes or breaks this kind of result.

My prompt was only a few sentences and produced mediocre results. If I were to revisit this with a laundry list of preferences, references, and tweaks refining several outputs, the result would be much more reliable, and, who knows, maybe I’d take credit for half of it.

If you haven’t seen some of these prompts’ abilities just yet, don’t worry. Surprisingly, you’re not a late adopter yet. I will make some observations in italics.

Start Blog From ChatGPT-4o Derived From Otter.AI Transcription of Most Recent SEO is Dead Podcast:

Navigating the Impact of Google’s Helpful Content Update: Insights and Strategies

In the ever-evolving landscape of SEO, staying updated with Google’s algorithm changes is crucial for maintaining and improving site rankings. One significant update that has shaken the industry is the Google Helpful Content Update. This blog delves into the ramifications of this update, featuring insights from experts who’ve navigated these changes and offering actionable strategies to adapt and thrive.

Understanding the Helpful Content Update

The Helpful Content Update, rolled out approximately eight months ago, has left a noticeable impact on numerous websites. This update emphasizes content that provides real value to users, de-emphasizing content created primarily for SEO purposes. Consequently, many sites experienced a significant drop in organic traffic and search rankings.

The Fallout: What Went Wrong? Picking this up as a topic was especially bizarre.

A common theme observed by industry experts is the widespread dissatisfaction and disillusionment within the SEO community. Many practitioners found their strategies and efforts rendered ineffective almost overnight. Forums and message boards have been flooded with stories of crushed spirits and declining metrics, highlighting the dire need for effective solutions.

Content Pruning: A Key Strategy

One effective approach to counter the negative effects of the update is content pruning. This involves reviewing and refining existing content to ensure it meets the current standards of relevance and value. Here’s how to do it:

    1. Audit Your Content: Conduct a comprehensive audit of your site’s content. Identify pieces that are outdated, low-quality, or no longer relevant. I believe we went into more detail than this and if we didn’t, this wouldn’t be useful in gauging what metrics determine “low-quality.”
    2. Consolidate and Update: Merge shorter, related articles into comprehensive, well-rounded pieces. Ensure that the updated content is detailed, informative, and aligns with user intent.
    3. Remove Irrelevant Content: Delete content that no longer serves any purpose. This includes time-sensitive posts (e.g., old news or event announcements) and topics that are no longer relevant.
    4. Enhance Authority and Trust: Update your content with the latest data, statistics, and authoritative references. Incorporate infographics and other visual aids to enhance user engagement and trust.

The Role of Word Count and Quality

A significant observation is the impact of word count on content indexing. Google seems to favor more comprehensive content, often setting an arbitrary threshold around 500 words for blogs to be considered substantial enough for indexing. This doesn’t mean that longer content is always better, but it must provide genuine value and thorough coverage of the topic.

Leveraging E-E-A-T (Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness) good description of EEAT.

To align with Google’s focus on helpful content, websites need to emphasize E-E-A-T. This involves:

    • Experience: Showcase the practical experience and hands-on involvement of content creators.
    • Expertise: Highlight the credentials and expertise of authors in their respective fields.
    • Authoritativeness: Build authority through backlinks, citations, and recognition from reputable sources.
    • Trustworthiness: Ensure transparency and accuracy in content, and maintain a professional, user-friendly website design.

Practical Implementation: Case Study Insights

One case study involved a medical malpractice law firm that saw a decline in traffic due to the update. The firm had numerous high-quality blogs that were no longer performing. The strategy implemented included:

    • Content Clustering: Grouping related articles into comprehensive guides or in-depth pieces.
    • Authority Building: Including author bios with credentials, linking to authoritative sources, and updating older posts with new information.

AI in SEO: An Essential Tool

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is becoming an indispensable tool in the SEO arsenal. From content creation to data analysis, AI can enhance efficiency and effectiveness. However, it’s crucial to maintain a human touch to ensure content quality and relevance.

    • Content Generation: Use AI to draft content but always review and refine to ensure it aligns with your brand voice and user needs.
    • Data Analysis: Leverage AI to analyze traffic patterns, user behavior, and content performance, allowing for more informed decisions.

Conclusion: Embrace Change and Innovate

The Helpful Content Update is a reminder of Google’s commitment to enhancing user experience. For SEO professionals, this means continuous adaptation and innovation. By focusing on quality, relevance, and user-centric content, and leveraging tools like AI, you can not only recover from the impacts of the update but also position your site for sustained success.

In the dynamic world of SEO, resilience and adaptability are key. Embrace these changes as opportunities to refine your strategies, deliver real value, and ultimately achieve greater success in the digital landscape.