Google Gemini for SEO: 5 Strategies That Work

As digital marketers, we constantly strive to stay ahead of the curve and embrace new technologies that can enhance our strategies and save us time. The advent of AI tools has undoubtedly revolutionized the SEO landscape, and Google Gemini (formerly Bard), Google’s AI-powered tool, has been a game-changer in AI content marketing for us at Big Sea.

Not only can Gemini automate routine tasks, such as keyword research and content optimization, it also enhances user experience by personalizing content recommendations and improving website interactions. With its direct connection to Google Search, Gemini provides us an incredibly powerful tool for insights into search trends and algorithm updates, empowering us to make informed decisions that align with Google’s latest guidelines for SEO.

A genie bottle with a Google search bar

Since we’ve successfully incorporated Gemini into our own SEO strategies, we’d love to share our favorite tips and tricks for using Google Gemini to help you elevate your organization’s SEO efforts and efficiency. This article takes you through strategies we use regularly to supercharge our marketing efforts. Please note that since the launch of Google’s AI Workspace package, there are now free and paid versions of Gemini. While we will sometimes make reference to Gemini Ultra (paid version), we try to stick to suggestions that people using the free version of Gemini can try as well.

Without further ado, here are our 5 proven strategies for using Google Gemini for SEO.

1. SERP Feature Assistant

At Big Sea, we’ve discovered a highly effective SEO strategy that utilizes Gemini as our personal Search Engine Results Page (SERP) feature assistant. It turns out that Google Gemini is great for helping us generate People Also Ask (PAA) style questions and help generate ideas for Featured Snippets. We’ve found that putting Google Gemni to work for us in this way helps us zero in on and create and optimize content that ranks for our clients’ targeted keywords.

Generate People Also Ask questions

So how do you get Google Gemini to generate PAA-style questions for your keyword? Simply ask Google Gemini the following questions, substituting in your chosen SEO keyword:

  • “Could you please use what you know about People Also Ask responses to generate a list of questions that searchers might have on the topic [SEO keyword]?”
  • “Generate 6 frequently asked questions and answers related to [SEO keyword]”

An image shows a Google Bard chat window with a user’s initial inquiry about People Also Ask questions and Google Bard’s generated responses.

After inputting your request for PAA questions, you’ll find that Gemini responds with a series of questions that are ideal for optimizing for SEO. Google Gemini generated PAA questions can help you develop an outline of relevant queries to address in your content. Because the content you create is based off of possible PAA questions, you’ll have a better shot of seeing that content picked up as in an actual PAA box or even as a featured snippet.

Gemini can also be a valuable tool for optimizing your content for featured snippets. Here are some ways that we use it:

Gemini’s ability to understand search intent and optimize content for featured snippets is a particularly valuable writing skill. To create content tailored for featured snippets, simply ask Google Gemini for a description of your topic that aligns with Google’s featured snippet guidelines. For example, you could ask:

  • “Write a description of [your topic] that you think could win a featured snippet in Google’s search results.”

A Google Bard chat box shows a question asking the AI tool to write a description on ‘affordable housing’ that could win a featured snippet

Google Gemini will then generate a concise and informative description that has a high likelihood of appearing as a featured snippet, boosting your content’s visibility and credibility.

Other options for getting Google Gemini to generate content that is specifically designed to appear in featured snippets include asking for things like definitions. You can get other kinds of Featured Snippet responses by giving Gemini prompts like:

  • “Write a definition for [term].”
  • “Summarize the [process name] process.”
  • “Please answer the following question: [PAA-style or long-tail keyword question].”

Once you’ve written your featured snippet content, you can ask Gemini to give you feedback on it. This can help you identify any areas where you can improve your content, so your chances of it being picked up by Google are improved. For feedback, try this prompt:

  • “Can you provide feedback on my featured snippet for the keyword [insert keyword]: [insert your featured snippet].”

2. Technical SEO Assistance

At Big Sea, we love to put Google Gemini to work helping us with the technical side of SEO. We frequently use Gemini to double-check or rewrite schema markups or with general troubleshooting questions.

Checking Schema Markup

Gemini claims to have access to Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool to test schema submitted to it, which is an advantage for ensuring your webpage’s schema markup is on point. Asking Gemini to check your schema markup will give you an account of your schema’s quality and type. Analyzing these results can provide insights into potential errors, ensuring that your page’s structured data aligns with SEO best practices and enhances your webpage’s visibility.

Try these inputting the following questions for help with your schema markup:

  • “Check schema for [your webpage url].”
  • “Can you please check my schema markup for errors? [insert schema markup]”
  • “Generate schema markup for [your webpage url].”
  • “Recommend quality schema markups for [your webpage url].”

An image shows a Google Bard chat window with a user’s inquiry about schema markup errors

You can also ask Gemini for help optimizing your website’s url structure, navigation, and internal linking by using the following prompts:

  • “Help me optimize my website’s URL structure to improve user experience and search engine rankings.”
  • “Create a navigation menu for [your website url] that is clear, concise, and easy to use.”
  • “Optimize the internal linking for [your website url] to make it easier for users to find the information they are looking for.”

Running these types of schema-related questions through Gemini can help your organization swiftly identify and address potential schema or optimization issues.

Advanced troubleshooting

Gemini is a valuable tool for advanced SEO troubleshooting. It can act as an assistant developer and analyze your website’s code and structure to identify potential technical SEO issues, including broken links, crawl errors, and website speed issues. It’s not as straightforward as directing Gemini to “fix” your website, but it’s also no more complicated than the usual steps you might take to troubleshoot. Here’s what we mean:

  • Specific queries: When we have a problem on a website, and can’t find an answer in documentation or on stack overflow, we turn to Gemini for help. We explain the problem in direct terms (the way you would to a colleague), and then ask for its suggestions. Usually, Gemini will produce a list of fixes you can try, and in our experience, there’s usually great ideas in there, if not an outright solution.
  • Comparing strategies: When faced with two or more options for solving a problem, we often ask Gemini to weigh in on the best approach. It’s often very helpful to read through Gemini’s evaluation of the options, even if you don’t take its advice.
  • Reviewing code: Ever struggle to identify a mistake in a line of code that you know is there? Just paste it into Gemini, and provide some context for what you think the mistake might be.

3. Writing Assistant

Gemini is an invaluable assistant for content creation on our team, serving as a versatile writing tool that can streamline the entire process. From generating outlines for blog posts to crafting engaging introductions and refining content for optimal SEO performance, Google Gemini proves to be a powerful ally for writers of all levels.

By taking advantage of Google Gemini, our writers can streamline their content creation process, enhance their writing skills, and optimize their content for search engines.

Constructing outlines

To harness Google Gemini’s outline-generating capabilities, simply provide it with a topic or keyword and let it work its magic. For example, you could ask:

  • “Craft an outline for an article about the [topic].”
  • “Outline the structure for a blog post on the [topic].”

Once you’ve provided Gemini with a clear prompt, it will generate a well-structured outline that, with a few tweaks from you, will serve as a solid foundation for your content.

Refining your writing

Google Gemini’s versatility also extends to refining existing content, whether it’s expanding a short paragraph or condensing a lengthy one. To utilize this feature, simply provide Gemini with specific instructions. For instance, you could ask:

  • “Expand the following paragraph on [topic]: [your paragraph].”
  • “Rewrite this paragraph to make it more concise while retaining the key points: [your paragraph].”

Gemini will then analyze the provided text and make the necessary adjustments to enhance its clarity, conciseness, or comprehensiveness.

Keyword optimization

Gemini’s prowess extends to optimizing content for specific SEO keywords. To utilize this feature, simply provide Gemini with the target keywords and the content you want to optimize. For instance, you could ask:

  • “Optimize the following description for these SEO keywords: [keyword #1], [keyword #2], and [keyword #3]: [your description].”

Gemini will analyze the provided text and make the necessary adjustments to incorporate the target keywords in a natural and effective manner.

 4. Personal Assistant

We’ve found that Google Gemini significantly boosts our productivity when we use it as a versatile personal assistant. It’s particularly adept at managing calendars and handling various spreadsheet tasks.

Calendar functions

Google Assistant already schedules calendar functions and sets reminders, but Gemini can help you create schedules for tasks that don’t fit so easily onto your daily work calendar. Specifically, Gemini can help you create calendars for specific tasks.

If you’re looking for Gemini to help with calendar functions, enter one of the following instructions, based on your specific scheduling needs, try one of these:

  • “Create a calendar event titled ‘[event name]’ for [specific details] on [date and time].”
  • “Create a calendar spanning from now until the end of the year that only consists of Mondays through Fridays (excluding weekends).”
  • “Create a calendar for December that only consists of Mondays through Fridays and that suggests a topic for each day for a LinkedIn post about SEO.”

Asking Google Bard to create a calendar

Guidance on Excel and Google Sheets

Gemini also proves to be an invaluable resource when navigating the complexities of Google Sheets or Excel. If you pay for Google’s AI package, you actually get Gemini integration directly into Sheets, which is fantastic. We’ve been using Gemini Pro since it became publicly available, and we’ve noticed some very cool features in Sheets, like providing suggestions for filling out columns based on your input. For instance, we were creating slugs in a spreadsheet based on keywords, and Gemini realized it and finished the column.

However, if you’re using the free version of Gemini, it can still assist you in creating content or performing calculations, explaining specific features, or crafting formulas for desired actions. To receive guidance with Excel or Google Sheets functions, we ask Google Gemini specific questions like:

  • “Can you walk me through the process of writing an Excel formula to [action we want to perform]?”
  • “How can I effectively utilize the [type of function] function within Google Sheets?”
  • “Provide a comprehensive explanation of the [type of function] Excel function, including its purpose and applications.”
  • “Can you tell me how to write a formula for Google Sheets that will [action you want to perform]?”

Google Bard chat about writing a formula in Google Sheets

5. Keyword Clustering Tool

Strategically grouping related keywords into thematic clusters signals our expertise to search engines, enhancing content relevance, internal linking opportunities, and the navigability of our sites.

With effective prompts, Gemini offers valuable insights into keyword relationships, enhancing our SEO performance and ensuring our clients’ sites are user-friendly. Here are some examples of prompts we use to leverage Gemini for keyword clustering:

  • “Arrange these keywords into 5 topic clusters: [keyword 1, 2, 3, etc.]”
  • “Identify related keywords for [your topic].”
  • “Suggest additional categories for keywords related to [your topic].”

Google Bard arranging keywords into topic clusters

By giving Gemini a list of keywords, we effortlessly organize them into meaningful clusters, expanding coverage and reaching a wider audience.

What (free) Gemini isn’t good at

While Gemini Pro excels at various tasks, the free version of Gemini is not quite as advanced as the paid model, and if you’re used to a more powerful platform like GPT-4, you might be a bit disappointed in Gemini’s output. With that in mind, we suggest upgrading to pro (or some other advanced LLM) to do the following:

  • Advanced prose: While it can offer inspiration, free Gemini lacks the creativity and strategic understanding of human writers or other comparable AI tools like GPT-4.
  • Taking Details into Consideration: When considering details like buyer journeys, preferences, and conversion opportunities, Gemini may overlook the intricacies required for a specialized marketing approach.
  • Fully SEO Optimized Outlines: Gemini falls short in providing fully SEO-optimized outlines without human intervention.

It’s essential to acknowledge that, like any technology, Gemini can make errors or misinterpretations. In some cases, it can break or refuse to answer a prompt altogether. For example, occasionally when prompting it to generate People Also Ask questions, we’ve found that Gemini just won’t work, insisting it can’t complete the request because it is “just a language model.”

While overall it’s an excellent strategic tool for SEO, Gemini just isn’t going to get the job done without an actual human reviewing, refining, and editing its content.

Google Gemini SEO FAQs

Is Gemini better than ChatGPT/GPT-4?

The performance of Gemini vs ChatGPT/GPT-4 varies widely based on the model you are using; however, according to an analysis from Fireflies, “Gemini shows broader and deeper language understanding, while GPT-4 specializes in logic, reasoning, and math. For multimodal tasks, Gemini leads in creative queries, while GPT-4V nearly matches it in visual analysis.” In other words, for creative and language tasks, Gemini Ultra outperforms OpenAI’s most advanced GPT model. However, as they point out, GPT-4 continues to be a superior platform for logic and math.

Since this is a subjective query, we’d like to weigh in with our take. While in our experience Gemini Ultra and GPT-4 both produce excellent content, the integration of Gemini with the rest of Google’s tools makes Gemini a game changer for our use of AI. Moreover, we’ve found that even using the free version of Gemini to be convenient because of it’s ability to output to Google Docs.

No. Gemini is designed to enhance, not replace, traditional Google Search. While Gemini refines the presentation of results, Google Search remains Google’s primary search engine. Gemini’s focus on concise answers aligns with changing user preferences, offering a complementary approach to the established search functionality.

Need help with your SEO strategy?

If you’re navigating the complexities of SEO for your nonprofit or business, Big Sea is here to help! Our team specializes in crafting effective SEO strategies, ensuring your online presence aligns with the latest trends. Contact us for help elevating your SEO game.