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How to Adapt Your SEO Strategy for AEO (Answer Engine Optimization)

How to Adapt Your SEO Strategy for AEO (Answer Engine Optimization)

How to Adapt Your SEO Strategy for AEO (Answer Engine Optimization)

Discover best practices to optimize your content for AEO success. 

While Answer Engine Optimization (AEO) is a fresh concept in the world of search engine optimization, it encompasses the growing voice search markets while demanding the attention of every SEO professional.

With the rise of AEO and virtual assistants, we’re seeing the purpose of content marketing shift towards more succinct, direct answers to user queries. Rather than delivering value, AEO focuses on content optimization to rapidly offer the correct responses within search engines to serve users' aural requests.

We can see the impact of AEO entering traditional SEO already, and the emergence of featured snippets and answer boxes on Google's attempts to solve the same challenge that voice assistants face in answering questions simply and conversationally.

Although this may seem inhibitive for content marketers and brands, it can actually help to target leads more effectively by anticipating user intent and the questions they’re likely to ask Google.

In adapting SEO strategies for answer engine optimization, it’s possible for marketers to position their content as a leading resource in Google’s SERPs, both as an audio answer and as a featured snippet.

Additionally, the use of voice assistants is rising globally, with Statista data forecasting that the number of digital voice assistants in use worldwide is set to double in 2024 to 8.4 billion.

Crucially, AEO appears to hold significant value in lead generation. According to a recent PwC survey, 80% of consumers who have shopped using a voice assistant are satisfied, 39% shopped again with the same retailer, 39% shared their positive experiences with friends and family, 36% gained a more favorable opinion of the retailer, and 24% spent more money with the retailer.

This suggests that AEO should be a key consideration for anybody seeking to ramp up their marketing efforts and improve their conversion rates, but how is it possible to incorporate AEO into your existing SEO strategy? 

Adapting to the Challenges of AEO and SEO

One key issue with the emergence of AEO is that it contradicts many core principles of SEO.

For instance, search engine optimization works when Google views quality content favorably enough to drive a website higher among its SERPs and generate higher volumes of leads visiting a website.

Quality SEO-focused content, statistics show, usually requires a longer copy of between 1,760 and 2,400 words in order to climb to the top of Google’s SERPs, and even then, the content must be of sufficient quality to engage readers to avoid bouncebacks.

The best SEO content is also built on high-value backlinks and reputable sourcing. How can good search engine optimization be observed if AEO challenges businesses to condense their content into short snippets for easy, audible answers?

Let’s delve into the emerging answer engine optimization landscape to explore the best ways to ensure that you’re optimizing for voice assistants and search engines at the same time. 

How to Cater Your Content to AEO

Fortunately, modern SEO and AEO share a lot of transferable qualities. For businesses seeking to boost their exposure across a variety of different channels, there are plenty of approaches that can be taken to unite answer engine optimization and search engine optimization practices: 

  1. Never Neglect Your FAQs

FAQs (frequently asked questions) can directly address recurring questions from your customers and leads, making them ideal for answer engine optimization.

This is so effective because it empowers you to continue making SEO content without having to shoehorn direct and succinct answers into the body of the text while hoping that Google’s crawlers are intelligent enough to pick them up and allow you to rank for them.

The beauty of FAQs is that they can be incorporated onto websites and product pages in a way that can build their relevancy to AEO and anticipate common consumer queries. Utilizing the help of a specialist SEO agency will help to open brands up to more voice assistant optimization through leveraging pages for voice search and AI-driven queries.


FAQs can be fully adaptable, too, and the use of drop-down text boxes means that businesses can add extensive questions and answers to pages without them becoming cluttered.

serps for aeo

Additionally, optimizing FAQs for AEO can also lead to SEO benefits. This is because Google could select your questions and answers as a Featured Snippet, which is presented as the first response to certain questions users ask.

To combine FAQs in your AEO strategy, be mindful to anticipate the questions that your target audience is likely to ask surrounding your product and seek to answer them directly in a single sentence or two. 

2. Building Content for Humans and AI

The key challenge for AEO revolves around creating content to be shared by both AI systems and human leads.

This requires a fundamental shift in the way you approach your content, but the changes shouldn’t be too jarring to get accustomed to.

One popular trope in journalism is to ‘kill your darlings,’ which refers to getting rid of any signs of superfluous content, no matter how well-written, in favor of creating a clear, concise, and relevant copy.

To kill your darlings for SEO has added relevance in AEO, and AI algorithms are constantly searching for quick and accurate answers that could be disrupted by more florid language.

To adapt your content for AEO, be sure to use more straightforward language, directly address user queries, and structure your content with clear headings and subheadings. Much like FAQs, try to create your headings in a way that anticipates user queries. This will help navigation and guide AI algorithms straight to the answers they’re looking for.

3. Query Optimization Tools

Query optimization is a key component of AEO, and to excel in this regard, you must identify and understand the types of queries your target audience is likely to run by voice assistants and search engines.

Anticipating the queries of your target audience can be tricky. Still, many SEO-focused tools out there are excellent at identifying essential keywords and questions being asked concerning your specific industry or niche.

Specifically, tools like Ahrefs, Semrush, and Google’s Keyword Planner can all be great at converting data into actionable insights for content inspiration and anticipating high-opportunity queries.

Using Ahrefs’ Keywords Explorer, we can see that relevant terms can be ranked by ‘keyword difficulty,’ which is a metric that assesses how tricky it would be to rank among Google’s top 10 search results when including the keyword in online content.

The Keywords Explorer also shows results by search volume, which displays the average number of searches for a specific keyword that takes place each month. This means that for the best results, users should seek to combine low keyword difficulty with high search volumes relevant to their niche to stand the best chance of being used by Google in more voice assistant results. 

4. Authoritative Voices Get More Attention

Finally, building your online presence to support your AEO strategy as a core component of good SEO is important.

By identifying a niche and becoming a thought leader, you’ll be able to create and maintain a strong personal brand that will see your authority grow. This will help you become more recognized by Google as a key industry voice, and as a result, you’ll see more content being utilized as voice assistant query results.

One great way of building your authority and relevance within your niche is to build a guest posting strategy where you build backlinks between your website and high domain authority (DA) or domain rating (DR) pages, which can help Google’s crawlers to understand your relevance better while ramping up your website authority. 

Great AEO Wasn’t Built in a Day

Like SEO, answer engine optimization takes time and effort to generate quality and sustainable results. However, by adjusting your search engine optimization strategy, you can begin laying the foundation of a winning AEO approach today.

By remembering to cater to AI algorithms, anticipate audience questions, and kill your darlings, you can take your first steps to AEO stardom today. Stay patient and keep things relevant, and you’ll soon be winning traffic in the growing voice assistants market sooner than you think.

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