How will ChatGPT and Artificial Intelligence Impact Franchise Lead Generation?
By: Michael Alston for Franchise Insights
February 15, 2023 — What is now more interesting to Google searchers than Kim Kardashian, and almost as interesting as TikTok? Based on recent Google Search trends in the US, the answer is ChatGPT. Over one billion visits to the product occurred between its launch November 30 and February 5, 2023.
Artificial intelligence is quickly making its way into “intelligent” chatbots, content development, and auto-generated personalization of marketing email copy. But how this will impact franchise lead generation is directly tied to the fate of Google’s search engine, which currently enjoys almost 93% market share of all mobile and desktop searches.
Google has a long history of changing search page “real estate” – adding paid results on top of organic listings way back in 2000, reallocating space between organic and paid over time, adding video results, and more recently making an effort to answer many questions (on the right side of desktop screens) without visiting any website. This phenomenon, called “zero click” searches, makes up as many as 57% of mobile and 53% of desktop searches.
Google’s adaptation to mobile has been one of the most profound changes, vastly increasing search volume and clicks. Now over 60% of searches are made from mobile devices.
Text-prompt based searches using artificial intelligence at Microsoft’s Bing and countless other providers will certainly cut into total searches. And Google’s own AI-driven search results will likely change the search page “real estate” further.
Given Google’s substantial and early lead in artificial intelligence, one should wait to judge who will win the “best AI search” war. But if clicks from total Google searches become more scarce, or focused, prices for those clicks are likely to rise. Google has assured investors that its new AI-aided search is coming soon.
So the bad news is that AI-driven search is another headwind to consider along with the elimination of 3rd party cookies from Chrome, the world’s most popular browser, and Google’s upcoming cessation of tracking across apps in 2024, as it follows in Apple’s ATT footprints. Costs per click will go up, and clicks may become less plentiful.
The good news is that there will likely emerge new search engines and places to market franchises as competition for Google grows. Advertisers will always migrate to where the eyeballs (and lower effective cost per conversion) are. But if you are bothered by Google’s incredible search market share, and you are generating a significant share of your franchise leads from Google, be careful what you wish for.
FranchiseVentures is the leading demand– and lead-generation platform for potential franchisees to thousands of growing franchise systems in the United States and Canada. Its franchise lead generation brands include Franchise.com, Franchise Solutions, Franchise Gator, Franchise Opportunities, Franchise For Sale, SmallBusinessStartup.com and BusinessBroker.net, and together they provide the largest aggregation of prospective franchise buyers in the U.S.
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Published on Wednesday, February 15th, 2023.