SEO professionals understand the ever-evolving nature of their field, with Google updates occurring frequently.

These updates range from significant announcements to more subtle alterations, creating a sense of challenge for those invested in organic strategies.

As AI plays an increasingly prominent role in search algorithms, adaptability and awareness are crucial for continued success.

In this blog, we’ll explore the most impactful Google updates influencing SEO in May 2024 and beyond, offering insights to help you thrive within this dynamic search environment.

Google Updates With Premium AI Search

Google’s latest updates signal a potential makeover to its search empire: offering paid AI-powered search features alongside its traditional free model.

This move comes after challenges with its earlier attempt, “Search Generative Experience” (SGE), which aimed to integrate AI summaries into search results.

While SGE offered a glimpse into an AI-powered search future, concerns about accuracy and bias led to limited adoption.

Aid For Future Development

This new direction suggests Google remains committed to AI innovation in search.

By offering premium features, Google could potentially fund further development while maintaining the free, ad-supported experience most users rely on.

It’s also worth noting that Google already offers its AI assistant, Gemini, within some subscription services.

Gemini’s stumbles with image generation, producing historically inaccurate results, highlight the ongoing challenges Google faces in perfecting AI for search.

New Update in a Nutshell 

Paid AI Search

Google explores charging for advanced AI-powered search features as part of subscription plans.

Free Search Remains

Traditional Google Search with ads continues as a free service for everyone.

Gemini Integration

Existing subscription tiers (like Google One) already offer Google’s Gemini AI assistant, hinting at where premium search features might land.

Cost vs Innovation

AI search is more computationally expensive. Subscriptions could offset costs while allowing Google to innovate.

Market Test

It’s unclear how the market will react to paying for enhanced search, even with a free option available.

Implications for SEO


Two-Tiered Optimization

Marketers might need to optimise for both traditional search (for general users) and premium AI search (for subscribers).

Premium Content Competition

If AI features deliver highly-summarised answers directly, websites might see less traffic, increasing competition for those AI-generated summaries.

AI-Focused Content

Emphasis on writing content that AI algorithms deem clear, concise, and directly relevant to the search query will become even more critical.

Knowledge Graph Importance

Building brand authority and structured data may increase chances of inclusion in AI-search summaries.

Agility is Key

The SEO landscape is likely to shift rapidly. Staying updated on Google’s premium roll-out and adapting strategies quickly will be crucial.

Crawling Like Never Before

Google’s recent insights highlight the multifaceted nature of crawl budget management.

Firstly, it’s not just about optimising for web search – Googlebot’s activities for Merchant Center, ads, and other services also consume crawl budgets.

This means a comprehensive SEO strategy needs to consider the cumulative impact of these services on your website’s crawling allowance.

Secondly, the fact that every hostname (domain and subdomain) gets its own crawl budget adds a layer of complexity for large, multi-domain sites.

This requires careful prioritisation and attention to each hostname’s individual needs.

Implications & Actionable Steps

These updates emphasise the need for a holistic and proactive approach to crawl budget management.

Here’s what you should focus on:

Broader SEO Mindset

Think beyond traditional web search when making SEO decisions.

Evaluate how features like Merchant Center listings or ad campaigns might impact your overall crawl budget.


Identify the most critical pages on each hostname within your site structure.

Proactively use tools like robots.txt and ‘noindex’ tags to guide Googlebot towards those high-value pages, conserving crawl budget on less essential content.

Server Monitoring

Keep a close eye on your server performance metrics in conjunction with Google Search Console’s crawl stats.

Look for signs of strain and proactively scale up resources or implement caching solutions if necessary.

Communication with Google

Tools like the crawl-rate setting in Google Search Console allow for some communication of your server’s capabilities.

Use these to help Google balance its demand with your website’s health.

End Of Video Carousel

Google’s recent video carousel discontinuation makes a major addition in ongoing Google updates: a renewed emphasis on the fundamentals of video SEO.

Creating high-quality, engaging videos that answer users’ search queries is essential.

This change follows testing that revealed the feature wasn’t providing the intended value to users at scale.

While Google recommends leaving existing markup in place for the benefit of search engines, it’s clear that video carousels won’t be a key focus for Google Search moving forward.

Use it strategically 

This decision highlights the importance of focusing on the fundamentals of video SEO. Creating high-quality, engaging videos that answer users’ search queries is essential. 

While video carousels are no longer a direct path to increased visibility, video remains a powerful content format.

Explore other platforms like YouTube and social media to expand your video reach.

Strategic video embedding on your website, coupled with continued strong SEO practices across all content types, will help you maintain and grow your search presence in the long run.

Google Reddit Partnership

Google has struck a major deal with Reddit, granting the search giant access to Reddit’s vast repository of user-generated discussions.

This collaboration aims to fuel Google’s artificial intelligence (AI) models, allowing them to better understand the nuances of human conversations and tailor search results accordingly.

In return, Reddit will leverage Google’s AI tools to enhance its search capabilities and potentially develop new features for its users.

Being Adaptive

This partnership will heavily influence Search Engine Optimization (SEO).

Expect to see Reddit discussions featuring prominently in Google search results, especially for queries seeking firsthand experiences, product reviews, and in-depth discussions.

Brands and content creators must adapt to this change, potentially considering active engagement on Reddit as a new facet of their SEO strategy.

Active Participation is the Key!

To navigate this evolving SEO landscape, businesses should focus on proactive engagement and value creation within Reddit.

This means participating in relevant subreddits, sharing expertise, and responding to user feedback authentically.

Additionally, monitor conversations about your brand on Reddit to manage your reputation and address both positive and negative sentiment swiftly.

By embracing Reddit as a valuable source of customer insights and a platform for genuine interactions, businesses can ensure their online presence aligns with the shifting dynamics of search.

What to Do with Google Updates

Be Strong At Basics

We can sail and proceed smoothly while keeping our base strong. While adapting to Google Updates and to make it up to the top, be a pro at the following: 

Backlinks: Quality Over Quantity

Continue earning backlinks, but prioritise high-quality, relevant sources.

Seek out opportunities for thoughtful guest posts and collaborations within your niche.

Establish Niche Authority

Create in-depth, expert-level content that solves problems and offers unique insights.

Become the go-to resource within your industry.

Long-tail Keyword Dominance

Target specific phrases people are likely to search, increasing your chances of ranking well for those terms and attracting qualified visitors.

Mobile-First is a Must

Ensure your site is flawlessly responsive and fast-loading on mobile devices. Google prioritises the mobile experience.

Voice Search Ready

Optimise for conversational queries using natural language and structured data.

Technical SEO Excellence

Ensure your site is crawlable, indexable, and free of errors that hinder search engines.

User Experience (UX) is Vital

Focus on providing a seamless, intuitive experience.

Fast load times, clear navigation, and engaging content all contribute to positive UX and better SEO signals.

Optimize with AI, Outsmart with Imagination

Embrace AI for SEO enhancement, especially in keyword research and insights, while always remembering that AI cannot replace human imagination.

While the future of SEO undoubtedly lies with AI advancements, a balanced approach is essential.

AI may struggle when fresh content sources dry up, highlighting the ongoing need for human creativity.

Future is Definitely AI Powered

Google CEO Sundar Pichai sees the future of search as increasingly driven by artificial intelligence.

This builds upon Google’s existing use of AI for answers and featured snippets.

The company’s Search Generative Experience (SGE) is a key component of this shift and has already handled billions of queries.

Pichai expresses confidence in Google’s ability to monetize AI-powered search, despite its computational costs, while also ensuring a mix of direct answers and links for user exploration.

Proceed With the Best

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Discover the difference a balanced approach makes – Contact us today.