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How to use ChatGPT (AI) in a safe and SEO-friendly way.
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How to use ChatGPT (AI) in a safe and SEO-friendly way.

ChatGPT is a very hot topic at the moment. If you haven’t heard of it or you haven’t played with it before – boy, is it an incredible tool!

In this blog, we’ll dive into what ChatGPT is and also cover a little bit about AI (artificial intelligence).

I’ll explain why ChatGPT is such a big deal right now, covering some pre-flight safety checks before you get stuck in, and walking you through a great content research exercise that you can get started on today.

I delivered a Masterclass on this topic back in April 2023. If you’d like to watch the replay, hop right in here:

SEO Masterclass

And our YouTube series on AI & SEO is here:

YouTube Series

What is ChatGPT?

For the benefit of anyone who is unsure, ChatGPT is an AI tool. AI, or artificial intelligence, is basically a machine, piece of software or a program that interacts in a similar way that a human would.

We’ve had different types of AI in our lives for quite a few years. For example, Google Maps uses AI for choosing the best route for you. Facebook is driven by AI, using algorithms that show you the content that keeps you scrolling. For those of you that use an iPhone, face ID is also AI. YouTube captions, Alexa, Siri, all use AI, and the list goes on and on.

For the majority of us, AI is already an integral part of our everyday lives.

Narrow AI vs General AI

If we’ve had AI in our lives for so many years, you’re probably wondering why ChatGPT is such a big deal and why you’re hearing about it everywhere.

This is where we get into the different kinds of AI.

Narrow AI is all of those examples that I gave you above, and then there is General AI which technically doesn’t exist yet (but it’s not far away).

Narrow AI is AI that has been created for a very narrow, specific purpose. For example, with Google Maps, the AI is narrow because its sole purpose is to find the best or quickest route to get you from A to B, taking into account traffic, etc. Equally with Facebook, its whole mission is to keep you on Facebook, scrolling and engaging with content. Siri’s mission is to understand and interpret your speech correctly, and then provide a helpful response.

General AI, on the other hand, is AI that is capable of understanding the world as well as any human.

General AI: Into the unknown

This is where it goes a bit sci-fi and people start getting worried about robots taking over the world, because to date, we technically haven’t had this sort of AI yet.

With ChatGPT, the way we can interact with it and the information that it pulls and gives us is edging closer and closer (possibly the closest that we’ve ever been) to General AI. ChatGPT is not too far off from being indistinguishable from a human mind – you can have (typing) discussions with it, just like you would a friend. You can ask ChatGPT for recommendations or advice and it will provide answers (although 100% accuracy isn’t quite there, yet).

If all this has you remembering movies such as “I, Robot”, then you’re not alone! It’s understandable that we as human beings would pattern match what we saw in “I, Robot”, and wonder “could this happen in the real world?” However, it’s worth remembering that when the internet came along people were sceptical, and now we can’t imagine a life without it.

I personally think the way that we’re going to feel about AI in the future looking back, is the same way that we feel about the internet today. AI is an incredible tool that is neither good nor bad, but it does have the potential to do all the mundane jobs that drain our energy.

Just some of the potential possibilities include AI robot chefs that have healthy, nutritious meals waiting for families when they get home, or AI robot house cleaners that always keep your home spotless (bliss!), or perhaps AI robot dog trainers that keep intelligent pups entertained and engaged during the day whilst their families are at work or school.

The possibilities are endless, and will give us back time to focus on the things that matter most to us; our passions, our families, our work, and doing our part to help make this world a better place.

ChatGPT Versions

Now ChatGPT is actually getting quite close to General AI. There are currently different versions of ChatGPT available. The free version of ChatGPT is (at the time of writing) version GPT-3.5, but there is also a paid version which gives you access to GPT-4, which is even more advanced than the free version.

The paid version is currently $20 a month, and if you’re using ChatGPT a lot and you want to get access to the additional features, it is probably worth the investment. It’s more advanced and more powerful than version 3.5. For example, if you give a passage of text (such as a blog post), it can summarise it for you. This is really useful for your social media posts if you’re sharing your latest blog post with your audience. There are lots of ways that ChatGPT can save you time.

The next version of ChatGPT (GPT-5) is anticipated to be true General AI and is expected to launch in 2024.

Let’s play with ChatGPT

Before we hop in and start playing with ChatGPT, there are a few safety rules first.

Pre-flight safety checks

There are a few basic safety rules that you should follow when using ChatGPT:

  1. Never (never ever ever) put personal, private or sensitive information into ChatGPT. If you wouldn’t put it publicly on the internet (your website or social media), then don’t put it into ChatGPT.
  2. ChatGPT is not 100% accurate (yet). So, when you use it for information gathering, always double check any facts that ChatGPT gives you.
  3. You can (and should) correct ChatGPT when it gets things wrong because it will learn from you.
  4. It’s not safe (yet) to get ChatGPT to write your blog posts or website copy from scratch, although this might change in the future. Google can tell when copy has been written by AI.

Value your unique and amazing voice

Aside from any negative impact on your SEO by using ChatGPT to write all your content, the biggest issue is that it takes you and your voice out of the equation, and we don’t want that. There are aspects of ChatGPT under development that can learn your personality and your tone of voice, but for now you need to keep yourself very much in the picture. You are so valuable as who you are within your business. People buy from people, so it’s important that you remain authentically you in your business, and in your website and blog post content.

Generating content ideas with ChatGPT

The safest way to use ChatGPT (or any AI tool for that matter) when it comes to SEO, is to use it like a research assistant.

ChatGPT is fabulous at generating content ideas. Here’s an exercise which completely dissolves “blank page syndrome” – especially useful when you’re out of ideas but still need to get a blog or post out there.

For this example, I will be looking for blog ideas for an accountant who needs to write some new blog posts.

Remember that the key to getting the best results from ChatGPT is to provide it with as much context or background information as possible.

  1. First go to ChatGPT (https://chat.openai.com) and set-up a user account.
  2. Open up a new chat and type: “I am a {job title} providing {services} to (target audience}. Please can you suggest 5 blog topics which would be perfect for my target audience?”

Using our example from above: “I am an accountant providing accounting support to female business owners. Please can you suggest 5 blog topics about why engaging an accountant for your business is a good idea, which would be perfect for my target audience?”

  • Chat GPT will then provide you with 5 suggested titles, each of which can be a possible blog post.
  • You can then ask for more details on each idea by simply talking to it like you would a fellow human. “I really like number 3. Please can you give me 5 points to cover on that?”
  • If you decide to ask ChatGPT about ideas for a completely new topic, always open a new chat first so that you don’t confuse it. All your previous chats are saved down the menu on the left and you can revisit them later.

You can then use ChatGPT’s ideas and suggestions to build your blog post, whilst bringing in your glorious uniqueness and your personal expertise and experience.

Summary

ChatGPT is a fabulous tool and getting better with each new version.

Here are the key takeaways on how to use ChatGPT safely when it comes to your SEO:

  1. Don’t put personal info into ChatGPT.
  2. Always double-check any facts it gives you.
  3. Do correct ChatGPT if it makes mistakes.
  4. Use ChatGPT for ideas generation, but do not use it to write your copy (as yet).
  5. AI is developing all the time (people had hardly heard of ChatGPT 9 months ago!), so keep your finger on the pulse and keep up to date with new AI developments and functionality. Follow us on YouTube for our latest videos – we’ll talk about any big changes in AI that impact SEO as and when they happen.
  6. Provide ChatGPT with as much information as possible for the best results that will really resonate with your target audience.
  7. Most importantly, remember to keep your own personality within your writing. People buy from people, and people want to buy from you (not from an AI).

If you’d like to know more about how to improve your visibility in an SEO-friendly way and to hear the latest about AI and a whole host of other useful tools, check out our SEO Clarity Club for practical learning guidance and a warm and friendly learning community.


Sara Thornton

Sara is WebHolism's SEO Guide and Trainer. She's the one you'll see in all our YouTube videos, and helping folks out with their SEO queries on social media. She runs the fabulous SEO Clarity Club which teaches women how to do their own SEO. In her spare time she loves board games, and splashing around in the sea.

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