Cindy Krum’s keynote at EngagePDX a few weeks ago was both fascinating and a little disturbing:
More detail can be found in this post Understanding Mobile-First Indexing (2/3): The Long-Term Impact on SEO
Mobile-first indexing is not the same as Mobile-first design and making sure your site is friendly to mobile devices. The internet is expanding to the point where Google cannot crawl everything, and crawling is in itself inefficient. Indexing is moving to a place where there are no URLs and Google (or Alexa, or a similar device) will tell you the answer to your question regardless of whether there is a URL associated with it. For marketers this means that we really need to be very clear about what question our content answers and structured data and schema.org matters again. See my recommendation to set your pages up with structured data and rich snippets and then my reversal when Google told us rich snippets were over. Tagging your content correctly will help our future AI overlords understand that we hope to be the answer chosen for voice searches and other searches.
For people who use the internet, this is actually already happening. When you use Knowledge Graph results, or your Google Now results, or anytime you ask any voice-enabled device for an answer you are not only using primitive AI, but you are also training the AI to understand context and relevance. The future is pretty amazing, and I’m sure there is no reason to worry about skynet. Yet.