Will Google’s SGE Impact Your Brand Visibility?

Where do you turn for recommendations when looking for the best restaurant in town or reliable doctors? One of the first places I turn to is online reviews or word-of-mouth recommendations from friends. These resources provide personalized, relevant recommendations.

Search Generative Experiences (SGE) are like friends who save you time by providing quick information and recommendations so you don’t have to sift through Google search results.

For brands, SGE can increase your brand visibility the same way positive reviews boost your online reputation and visibility.  Brand visibility attracts customers by building recognition and trust. Those conversion pillars are what will turn strangers into loyal customers.

We’ll examine how SGE impacts brand visibility and how you can adjust your SEO around SGE changes.

Search Generative Experiences use the power of generative AI to answer search queries in convenient user-centric summaries at the top of search pages. SGE aims to improve the search experience so users can find information faster and easier.

SGE uses a combination of AI-generated information and links to digital content recommendations.

Because SGE summarizes answers to questions, users no longer need to click on search engine results and browse websites looking for answers. Instead, all the key points are conveniently laid out at the top of their search results page.

Google’s Search Generative Experiences impact brand visibility by removing the need for users to click on content. Instead, users can see quick answers directly in their search results pages without clicking any links.

SGE experiences still offer the same search engine results below the SGE summary. However, the traditional results list appears lower on the page due to SGE receiving a prominent space in search results. Some first-page results may soon find themselves on the second page or further down because there is less space near the top.

Not all changes are negative. SGE also opens new opportunities for increased traffic. For instance, SGE pulls links and recommendations, which are placed in its summary for readers to click on for further reading. Because SGE is still experimental, marketers understand very little about how SGE pulls recommendations.

However, marketers have noticed that not all the recommendations in SGE results are from the top search results, so gaining a spot in SGE may prove to be a more significant challenge than marketers may at first expect.

Due to the limited understanding of SGE, marketers should approach it carefully to assess its trustworthiness and reliability at every stage of development.

Importance of Brand Visibility in a Digital Society

Whether or not you support Google SGE, the popularity of this AI technology is still increasing. Within five days of launching ChatGPT, it saw one million new users. By February 2024, it had reached over 1.6 billion monthly visitors.

The demand for AI-generated experiences is significant. Thanks to the convenience of AI assistants, people are saving thousands of dollars and countless hours. AI can create and summarize information that used to take hours.

Brand visibility remains crucial to conversion. When your audience regularly sees you, you will have a greater chance of reaching them and building trust.

While AI can generate search results that reduce traditional web traffic, there are still many areas where users still rely on brands for information and connection. That’s why brands need to optimize themselves for AI, so they can fill in the gaps where AI falls short while also showing up alongside AI information, like in SGE recommendations.

Learn how to use Google SGE to promote your brand and gain visibility through SGE rankings.

1. Adopt a Holistic Branding Strategy

Marketers often associate branding with the awareness stage. Yes, your branding is crucial in becoming visible and allowing new customers to begin trusting your company.

However, SGE is changing the branding game.

Marketers should consider moving toward a holistic branding strategy that markets to the entire customer journey. This strategy would extend beyond your traditional SEO tactics to encompass several touchpoints.

To build a multi-touchpoint SEO journey, focus on keywords with several search intents. The four are navigational, informational, commercial, and transactional. Your keywords tool will alert you to which intent your keyword is. Finding a good mix will help you target those looking for solutions instead of just quick information.

For example, instead of just targeting new audiences, create content around commercial keywords and intent to reach those who are ready to buy. Commercial traffic is more likely to click on your content and not just read snippets of information because commercial leads are searching with the intent to take action.

2. Strategically Select Platforms

Strong brand visibility is not a matter of numbers alone. It’s a matter of quality.

For example, 1,000 visitors doesn’t necessarily mean you have a strong branding strategy. What matters is whether those visitors are interested in your products.

It’s time to shift your focus away from traffic numbers and to who you’re trying to reach. Then, you can build brand visibility strategies around that audience, starting with the platforms they spend the most time.

The go-to marketing platform may no longer be exclusively Google. Diversify your strategies to other channels, such as social media, to reach a wider audience.

For instance, TikTok works very well for reaching young millennials and teens, so fast fashion, cosmetic, and gaming brands often use that platform to increase their brand visibility. However, if you’re a B2B business, you probably won’t find your audience on TikTok. Instead, you will find most of your new clients on platforms like LinkedIn.

The platform’s purpose will also impact who you will reach and what content will perform best. Instagram is a creative platform for fashion brands, artists, and authors, while LinkedIn is a business networking platform for professionals.

Social media, while a powerful way to generate visibility, isn’t your only option. Sites like Reddit and Quora are performing well in terms of SGE results. Posting answers to questions in your industry can help you gain visibility on those sites and traffic from search engine results pages.

3. Focus on Quality Insights

SGE aims to provide quick, accessible answers to top-funnel questions.

For example, if you want to know who founded Starbucks or what food pairs well with Arabic coffee, SGE can provide those answers in a quick blurb at the top of the search features.

However, most readers only look for answers, not products or services, so losing that traffic might not impact you as negatively as you imagine.

Instead, focus on the content at the middle and end of the funnel. That’s the content users looking for products will click on.

For instance, the search query “What are the top coffee maker brands?” will bring in people looking for the best coffee maker. These readers are actively searching for product reviews that SGE can’t conveniently summarize. A coffee supplier can rank for content that will lead those customers to their products.

Having content with quality insights that AI can’t answer with a quick question will ensure you continue attracting traffic. When performing SEO research, you must pay close attention to keyword intent to identify keywords that require deeper insights than what SGE provides. Then, pull in a good mix of educational and commercial keywords.

You don’t want to neglect quick answers just because you want to focus on those insightful topics. Optimizing your content by making it snippet-worthy might just earn you a few extra clicks if SGE uses it in its SGE summary.

4. Build Your Brand Authority

With enough notoriety across the digital world, bringing in traffic will become much easier. Not only will readers recognize your brand and click your links, but Google’s algorithm is more likely to notice your brand and rank you higher or recommend you in SGE results.

Some ways to build your brand authority and manage your reputation include:

  • Generating customer feedback and reviews
  • Sharing quotes
  • Posting interviews
  • Publishing original research
  • Guest posting on respected sites
  • Staying active on industry channels and pages
  • Managing all your online profiles (including your Google business page, Yelp listing, and any directory listings)

5. Create Content for Your Readers

If you are ever in doubt about how to approach SEO, think of what would be most beneficial to the customer. Marketers are often caught up in the latest SEO trends and forget why we perform SEO in the first place.

The goal of SEO is for our ideal audience to find relevant and helpful information online. Those search results bring customers to your sites and help match them with much-needed solutions to common pain points and challenges.

SEO isn’t for Google. It’s for the customer.

Creating a customer-first SEO strategy focuses first on creating content around what customers need, want, and will search for. It’s about taking time to add quality to your content.

When you create customer-first content, your readers will take note. It will build trust and keep visitors returning for more content and products.

So, while you’re researching the latest changes in SGE, be sure to shift your focus back on the customer and spend time researching what they want and need. When you do, you will see the traffic follow because people will take note. When people notice your content, the search algorithm will also notice it, increasing your chances of a spot in SGE results.

You can invest hours into understanding SGE and trying to craft the best strategy for ranking, but at the end of the day, does your SGE ranking matter?

It isn’t what is most important. SEO is about whether your target audience can still find you and you are still connecting with customers meaningfully. You don’t need perfect SEO. You just need a deep understanding of your audience. The traffic will follow when you know who you are marketing to and build a strategy around the people rather than an algorithm.

We can help you build that personal SEO strategy by going beyond the data and numbers and digging into the heart of the issue.

Let’s build a people-first brand visibility strategy that meets customers where they are and serves them well! Contact us to get started on your revitalized brand visibility strategy.


Justin Staples

For 15 years, Justin has guided businesses on a transformative journey through strategic marketing and design to craft their unique online identity.