How AI is Changing SEO and What It Means for Your Business


Search is changing.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is changing.

The way we use the Internet is changing.
The way that people online will find your business is changing.

How is it changing?


(Read the Transcript of this video below)

One of the ways engine results are changing is by using artificial intelligence. Artificial intelligence is either trained on information from the web or retrieving information from the web in real-time.

As a small business owner, understanding these changes is crucial.

How will AI influence your website’s visibility?

How can you adapt to stay ahead in this dynamic landscape?

The Evolution of SEO

SEO has primarily been about keyword optimization and backlink building to rank higher on search engine results pages (SERPs). However, over the years, search engines have become smarter and more sophisticated.

Today, search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo prioritize user intent and content quality over the sheer quantity of keywords. They understand the context and semantics of search queries, providing users with more relevant and personalized results.


The Role of AI in Modern Search

AI technologies like ChatGPT and Google’s AI algorithms are revolutionizing how people search for information. For instance, ChatGPT can generate human-like text based on user prompts, making it a powerful tool for answering queries and generating content.

Introducing Perplexity AI: A new tool that has the potential to compete with Google in the search space. Perplexity AI leverages advanced algorithms to understand and respond to user queries with high accuracy, potentially offering more personalized search experiences.

“AI has changed the way we look at search engines. It’s not just about keywords anymore; it’s about understanding the user’s intent and providing the best possible experience.” – Jennifer DeRosa


Creating an AI-driven SEO Strategy

As a business owner, you may feel that you have little control over what users see when they search online. However, with the right strategies, you can influence how your content is perceived and ranked by search engines.

Staying Ahead with AI-Driven SEO Strategies

Here are some tips to stay ahead in the AI-driven SEO landscape:

Focus on E-E-A-T (Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness):

  • Experience: refers to the practical, real-world knowledge and insights that are demonstrated in your content.
  • Expertise: demonstrate your knowledge and skills in your content.
  • Authoritativeness: establish your site as a credible source in your industry.
  • Trustworthiness: build trust through reliable and accurate information.

Optimized Your Online Presence for AI search results

To ensure your content is optimized for AI-driven search engines, ask yourself the following questions:

  • What does your information online look like?
  • Where will search engines find information about your company online?
  • Where are they finding it right now?
  • How can you, as a business owner, augment this information so that engines have a clear picture of what your offer is?
  • How can you augment this information so that visitors will get the information they’re looking for?

Optimize for Buyer Intent

Understanding and optimizing for buyer intent is more important than ever since search engines are now better at identifying whether a user is looking for information, ready to make a purchase, or seeking a specific service.

As a business owner, you should focus on optimizing your content for transactional queries, where users are ready to buy. This involves creating content that addresses specific needs and offers clear calls to action.


Adapting to SEO updates, understanding and leveraging AI can significantly enhance your website’s visibility and performance. Implementing the strategies discussed and continually refining your approach ensures your website remains competitive in the ever-evolving digital landscape.

Subscribe to our blog for more SEO tips and updates, or book a Toto SEO intro call with us to learn how we can help you make your website a powerful tool that drives success. Let’s make your website a powerful tool that drives success.

This is the Toto way.



If you have a small business and you have a website, and you’re concerned about getting visitors to your website from the web, from search, right? So you’re concerned about maybe search engine optimization, and you’re concerned because there are so many changes going on right now when it comes to search, right? You want to know what you should be doing, okay? No one has the exact answers, but I’m going to give you some information right now for you to think about.

So, when you think of typical search and you think of Google, right? Or Yahoo or Bing, the way that search has been returned in the past has been returning us links. The search engines such as Google go out and they scrape the internet, right? They scrape your website, they read your website pages, and they take all the information and they put it into an index, and they put it into a database, okay? For simplicity’s sake. And then when someone is doing a search for something that you offer online, and search engines think that you have a pretty good website, they’ll return your website and what comes back in the search engines results page, right? And that’s a bunch of links. You all know this. You go to a search engine and there’s a bunch of links.

So that’s how the world has been focusing for the past, what I don’t know, over 20 years. What’s happening now is because of the advent of AI and our large language models that are becoming conversational, what’s happening is that the result, the answer that you’re asking in search is being returned right away for you. So it either is being returned right away for you. Like if you’re right now, at this point in time, Google has SGE. So you’ll see sometimes you’ll get the answer right at the top of your search results, and then there’ll be links below it. Or you might be using chat GPT or Claude or now we have Perplexity, okay? That will return the answer that you’re looking for in a conversation in paragraph format. When you use Perplexity, which is a tool, if you have not tried it, I definitely say just take a couple of minutes today and set it up. You can use it for free. You don’t have to pay for it. They do have a paid version, but you can start for free and do a couple of searches and you’ll see what happens. You get the answer you’re looking for in paragraph format, but they have citations and there are little tiny links, kind of like footnotes, all right? That we use. And then you can click on those links and you can see where the information came from and it’s rephrased for you.

So you might be thinking, oh, great, I have a business, I offer a service, or I sell a product, and if the answers are always being returned for you, how am I even going to get a chance? Because Perplexity is deciding who to return, or Google’s deciding what websites to return in that conversational area, you are not deciding, okay? Which has been the same kind of always, you’re not deciding which links get returned in Google, but we felt like we have an opportunity to improve ourselves, our websites in search, right? So this is the same thing. We need to start thinking, beginning to think of our website a little bit differently. And this is how I want you to begin to think.

Because search engines are indexing your site and they’re deciding when to return it, and they’re returning it in conversation form, that means you have to have really good content on your website already. You need to have that content there. And if your website is good and it has a good rating, a good domain authority, and the search engines trust what you’re saying, they might return your website in that conversational form, and then give visitors a citation. Now, if you think about the types of searches that really work well in this way, those are people who have the intent to find out information, okay? The intent is to answer a question. When you think about your business, whether you offer a service or a product, most likely you want searchers who are searching online, their intent is not necessarily informational. It might be if they’re at the beginning of the buyer’s journey and they’re not aware of your service, right? And they’re not aware of what they should do, they might start out that way. But when they’re moving down the buyer’s journey, their intent gets closer to creating, making a transaction, right? They want to actually engage with someone, they want someone to come out to their home and install a new fence or do some plumbing work or electrical work, or they want to find a restaurant to go to or a shop where they can get something in the home repaired, right? So those are more, you think about the intent is more transactional.

If we want to think about getting returned when there’s a transactional search, we need to let search engines know a lot about our service. We have to give them a lot of information. If you have all of your services on one page, that is not helpful. It is not telling search engines what you offer. You want to have your service pages, you want to go deep. There are strategies on writing your service content so that you provide all of the information that search engines are looking for, and there’s content that you definitely want to include. Those are things that we work with our customers at Toto SEO. We work with our customers on creating those pages that are rich, that search engines can understand that search engines know what our offer is, and we work with you to create a better website that gets found online and that people want to link to and that has a higher authority. And that comes across as showing your EEAT, your expertise, your experience, your authority, and your trustworthiness. You need to show that. You need to show it on your website. There’s ways to show it. And in certain industries, if you fall under YMYL, which is your money or life. So if you’re in the healthcare industry, news, financial industry, any of those, you definitely need to pay attention to EEAT. But we all should be showing our EEAT. And there’s ways to do that. So these are things that I want you to think about. Your website can work for you. You want it to be a tool that goes out and works for you. So you need to make it that way. That’s what we want to do. All right? So let’s focus on that. Let’s not focus on stressing out. Let’s focus on making our service pages.

Web Coach Jennifer Smiling

Former Web Development Agency Owner
Founder of Toto Coaching
Founder of Toto SEO

Jennifer DeRosa

Jennifer is the author of "Building DIY Websites for Dummies," a new addition to the renowned "for dummies" series.

She is also the visionary behind Toto SEO and Toto Coaching. As the founder of Toto SEO, she specializes in offering SEO solutions tailored for small businesses. Through Toto Coaching, she provides an interactive online course, complete with weekly coaching sessions, empowering small businesses and entrepreneurs to craft websites that not only presell their offerings but also foster trust among their clientele.

Jennifer's thirst for knowledge recently led her to complete a program on No Code Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning at the prestigious MIT University. 

Before her current ventures, Jennifer was the driving force behind TechCare, a web development agency she founded and led from 2001 to 2021, when she had a successful Exit.

Her career also includes consulting roles with industry giants such as Mercedes Benz Credit Corporation, US Surgical, GTE, GE Capital, Unilever, and Calvin Klein.

She is a frequent speaker for WordPress Meetups, SCORE, and others.

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