ICYMI, Google announced the long-awaited public release of its Search Generative Experience (SGE) last week. Except it’s no longer called SGE but rather AI Overviews (apparently, SGE was its experiment name). The search marketing industry is buzzing about the launch and its potential impact. So, we thought it might be good to add our perspective in the form of an FAQ…

Is it a surprise AI Overviews is using Gemini to help provide its generative AI responses?


In Google’s announcement blog from Liz Reid, VP, Head of Google Search, she said AI Overviews was “made possible by a new Gemini model customized for Google Search.”


But we already knew Gemini was one of the AI engines behind SGE, so no surprise here.

Are Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) with AI Overviews different from those presented by SGE?

In some ways yes, and other ways no.

In what ways are SERPs with AI Overviews the same as those we saw for SGE?

  • Most importantly, from a SAIO perspective, AI Overviews responses still include a citations “carousel” with source page images and links along with notated citations in the response where appropriate.
  • The AI Overviews SERPs still include Google Ads.
  • The AI Overviews SERPs still include natural/organic search results below the AI Overviews response.

In what ways are AI Overviews SERPs different from what we saw for SGE?

  • We’re seeing fewer instances of AI Overviews being included in the SERPs. Short, generic product/service queries we’ve been testing that previously resulted in SGE Gen AI responses are not generating AI Overviews (including tests on queries run just last week before the launch). This aligns with previous reports from BrightEdge earlier this month that search results did not include a Gen AI response 65% of the time. It also aligns with what Reid said in her blog that with the custom Gemini model “AI Overviews will help with increasingly complex questions.”
    Note: a SERP without AI Overviews means traditional SEO results continue to be shown in the positions they were in the past.
  • We’re seeing more instances of the “From sources across the web” SERP feature. This feature provides more detailed information snippets on specific subtopics of the original search with links to the sources. Here’s an example of this feature from a search we conducted on “benefits of meditation”:
Screenshot of Google Search result showcasing the benefits of meditation, including stress reduction, improved focus, and overall well-being. The first response is a "From sources across the web" feature with multiple subtopics


Note: this feature greatly improves the chances of link citations outside of those provided with AI Overviews and translates to more SAIO visibility opportunities.

Can you turn off the AI Overviews feature for Google searches?

Many people who are unhappy with AI Overviews have been told there is no easy way to turn them off. But, in our testing of AI Overviews, we’ve come up with a possible work-around:

Use Google’s Incognito mode to do your searches!

For searches that showed an AI Overview when logged into a Google account, Google Incognito did not show an AI Overview. We’re not guaranteeing this work-around will stand the test of time but it’s worth a try for now. You could also try using the Web filter button we highlighted in this week’s Perceptive Marketer. You’re welcome.

So, the launch of AI Overviews could be good for both SEO and SAIO?

Yes, that’s how we’re seeing it right now. We’re continuing our testing of this and other Gen AI engines. We will continue to keep you updated on all things SEO and SAIO.

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