Gartner Research: Organic search traffic will drop by 50% by 2028

blackbeans

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One of the world's top consulting firms has predicted that global organic search traffic will drop by 50% come 2028

Why?

Consumers will expect ONE ANSWER thanks to AI Chat interfaces like Bard/Claude/ChatGPT

By 2028, brands’ organic search traffic will decrease by 50% or more as consumers embrace generative AI-powered search.​


The rapid adoption of GenAI in search engines will significantly disrupt CMOs’ ability to harness organic search to drive sales. A Gartner survey of 299 consumers in August 2023 found consumers are ready for AI-enhanced search, with 79% of respondents expecting to use it within the next year. Furthermore, 70% of consumers expressed at least some trust in GenAI-backed search results.


“CMOs must prepare for the disruption that GenAI-backed search will bring to their organic search strategies,” said Weiss. “Marketing leaders whose brands rely on SEO should co
nsider allocating resources to testing other channels in order to diversify.”


Source: https://www.gartner.com/en/newsroom...-their-interactions-with-social-media-by-2025

My takeaway: The current model of websites producing content in exchange for search traffic will go a massive sea change.

Search engines using a CHAT interface producing ONE ANSWER will increasingly turn to SPECIALIZED DATA providers to train their systems

This may lead to BETTER SOURCES OF DATA and a CENTRALIZATION of expertise but it's going to be EXPENSIVE
 
I'm not sure about that; people aren't satisfied with AI's answer because it's heavily censored. These AI all try not to answer the questions and instead tell you how it's bad or good.
 
This is interesting. I've been having similar thoughts and I think they could be right. One thing is for certain though, the organic search traffic will most probably not increase in the coming years, at best we will stay at the current levels for a couple more years but eventually it will go down. How much? No one knows, but I'd bet 50% is not too terrible of a guess. When I say it's certain that traffic levels will not increase I'm making an assumption of course, considering all the SGE, AI softwares and what have you.

But IM always adapts and find ways to make bank. Heck, this forum will probably even grow in popularity if it comes down to the entire IM industry trying to game social media in the future. That's where the future lies, organic reach and paid ads on popular platforms. Some niches will still be good on Google, but it's just a matter of time.
 
I don't think so.

I'm not sure how they came up with that number, but here is my argument against it.

That traffic that's going to drop is going to be for terms like 'how old is xyz' etc as they offer "objective" answers.
Any term with a subject response will probably lose some, but not all traffic. If you're looking for mortgage advice or want to know how to build credit or anything else, would you trust AI response? Like If I want to know if Python is better/easier than Java, I would want a programmer to tell me.

Secondly, AI is not a magical tool spitting info out of the air. It's trained on information that's out there and with a bunch of new terms being coined every now and then, it would still need quality content to be trained, and even then, would you trust ai response?

There is also a philosophical reason for not wanting to let ai take over this niche. It might just push the creativeness out of the window entirely.
 
I'm not sure about that; people aren't satisfied with AI's answer because it's heavily censored. These AI all try not to answer the questions and instead tell you how it's bad or good.
As the tech matures (and competition heats up), I see that loosening up.

The key point is: ChatAI interfaces are CHANGING HOW CONSUMERS VIEW SEARCH RESULTS.

These platforms are "training" consumers to expect ONE ANSWER instead of several link results they have to click through.
 
Search engines using a CHAT interface producing ONE ANSWER will increasingly turn to SPECIALIZED DATA providers to train their systems

This may lead to BETTER SOURCES OF DATA and a CENTRALIZATION of expertise but it's going to be EXPENSIVE
Would they really be able to do that?

The amount of information provided by different websites from UGC content to specialized blogs. Let's see how it goes.

It'll be interesting.

Imagine the internet being controlled by 'Specialized Data Providers'. It won't go well with the general public.
Narratives would be 100% controlled by a few companies whose only goals are profits.

What we saw during covid would be child's play.
 
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