The way we search for information is undergoing a monumental shift, and for multi-location businesses, this shift presents both challenges and exciting opportunities. At the forefront of this change stands Google’s Search Generative Experience (SGE), a technology poised to revolutionize how users interact with search engines and how businesses like yours connect with potential customers.

What is SGE?

SGE is like a super-powered search engine that goes beyond just keywords and links. It aims to help users ask more complex and descriptive questions and make progress by asking follow-up questions or suggesting next steps.

Imagine a search assistant that:

  • Thinks like you do: It uses advanced technology to “read” between the lines and understand what you’re trying to ask.
  • Speaks your language: Instead of spitting out robotic answers, it gives clear, natural explanations like a helpful friend.
  • Knows what you’re looking for: It takes into account your location, interests, and even past searches to find the information that’s perfect for you.

SGE guides you straight to the answers you need quickly and easily. Here are a few examples to show how SGE works:

  • You type “best hiking trails near me.” Instead of endless lists, SGE shows you curated options based on difficulty, scenery, and even your past hikes.
  • You ask “Is this recipe healthy?” SGE analyzes the ingredients, suggests healthier alternatives, and explains why they’re better.
  • You wonder, “What’s happening in Ukraine?” SGE provides a clear summary of current events tailored to your interests and understanding.

It’s like having a personal research assistant who truly gets you, saving you time and frustration while leading you to the perfect information.

A person using Google search on a browser.
Traditional searchSearch Generative Experience (SGE)
Handling complex queriesHandles simple keyword-based queries effectively but may struggle with complex or context-dependent questions.Aims to handle more descriptive and nuanced queries where users can ask detailed questions, and SGE generates relevant answers.
Presentation of resultsResults are displayed as a list of links on the search engine results page (SERP) where users click on relevant links to access detailed information from various websites.SGE provides AI-generated summaries and answers directly on the SERP, and users receive concise information without needing to click through multiple links.
User interactionUser interaction involves clicking, reading, and navigating to external websites.Interaction happens within the search interface, where users can ask follow-up questions or explore related topics seamlessly.
Visibility and authorityWebsites compete for visibility based on SEO, backlinks, and content quality.
Authority is established through organic rankings.
AI-generated answers may include links to authoritative sources, so businesses must adapt their content strategy to be featured in SGE responses.
Evolution and uncertainty
Well-established and understood by marketers and users because consistent rules govern the search rankings.Still evolving, and its impact remains uncertain. Therefore, businesses need to stay informed about SGE updates.

Why SGE matters for multi-location businesses

SGE presents a powerful tool for multi-location businesses to enhance their local SEO strategy and reach customers like never before. Here’s how:

  • Hyper-local visibility: SGE understands the importance of location. It tailors information delivery based on the user’s specific location, ensuring your business appears in relevant searches even if you have multiple branches.
  • Targeted engagement: Imagine a potential customer asking, “What restaurants are open near me with vegan options?” SGE delivers results specific to the user’s location, potentially including your restaurant along with relevant details like opening hours and vegan menu highlights.
  • Personalized interactions: With its conversational nature, SGE allows users to refine their search through follow-up questions. This opens up opportunities for personalized interactions, directing users to the specific branch or service that best suits their needs.

The latest buzz and future possibilities

Currently, SGE is in a limited release phase, showcasing its potential in specific Google Search features. However, the future holds even more exciting possibilities:

  • Imagine voice search powered by SGE: Users asking, “Find the nearest pizza place open late”, will receive not just a list but a comprehensive response including directions, estimated wait times, and even reviews specific to their location.
  • Dynamic content based on real-time data: Live music events, special offers, or branch-specific updates can be seamlessly integrated into search results, keeping customers informed and engaged.

Preparing for the search revolution

While SGE offers immense potential, it’s essential to remember it’s still under development. Accuracy, bias, and limited data coverage remain areas for improvement. However, multi-location businesses can start preparing for the future by:

  • Optimizing local listings: Ensure your Google Business Profile listings are up-to-date and accurate, with detailed information for each branch.
  • Engaging with user reviews: Respond to feedback, highlight strengths, and address concerns across all locations.
  • Creating location-specific content: Share relevant blog posts, social media updates, and events, emphasizing the unique offerings of each branch.

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Voice search optimization is key

SGE’s strengths are perfectly aligned with the growing trend of voice search. By optimizing your online presence for voice assistants and utilizing natural language in your content, you can position yourself for success in the search revolution.

Beyond the hype: limitations and considerations

It’s important to approach SGE with a balanced perspective. While its potential is vast, it’s not a magic bullet. Some limitations to consider include:

  • Accuracy and bias: Like any AI system, SGE can be susceptible to bias and errors. Staying informed about its development and limitations is crucial.
  • Ethical considerations: Responsible AI implementation is paramount. As SGE evolves, ethical considerations regarding data privacy and responsible information delivery must be addressed.

Embrace the change, and stay ahead of the curve

The world of search is changing rapidly, and SGE is a major driving force. For multi-location businesses, understanding this technology and adapting your strategies is essential to remain competitive and connect with customers in meaningful ways. Embrace the change, stay informed, and be ready to revolutionize your business with the power of SGE.

Empowering multi-location businesses with the power of generative AI and BirdAI

As generative AI technology like SGE continues to reshape the search landscape, businesses need intelligent tools to stay ahead of the curve. Birdeye’s BirdAI, powered by advanced AI and natural language processing, empowers you to harness the power of customer conversations and local search.

BirdAI analyzes your reviews and translates them, gleaning valuable insights and trends that inform your SEO strategy. It leverages AI-powered responses to engage with customers and promptly address their concerns. By integrating Birdeye and BirdAI into your operations, you can ensure your multi-location business is present in search results and delivers exceptional customer experiences that keep them coming back for more.

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