ChatGPT Gets Prominent Links: What You Need to Know

OpenAI just added a new feature to ChatGPT that makes source links more prominent in its responses:

Let’s take a quick look at this announcement and see what it means for you, the marketing professional.

Yaniv Masjedi
CMO, Nextiva

Their expertise has helped Nextiva grow its brand and overall business

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ChatGPT’s Prominent Links Means More Transparency

This update underscores OpenAI’s commitment to transparency when it comes to accessing original content, meaning that users can easily trace facts and stats back to their origins. This move is particularly important in an era where the dissemination of information and the authenticity of digital content are under constant (and growing) scrutiny.

By integrating more visible and accessible links directly into ChatGPT’s responses, OpenAI aims to encourage direct engagement with content creators and publishers and support reliable information sharing. In other words, it doesn’t want to get sued for plagiarism.

I’ve noticed these prominent links in the last week or so:

Screenshot showing ChatGPT's Prominent Links to clearly cite sources

This improvement to ChatGPT’s functionality appears to be a part of a larger strategy to make the tool not just a provider of answers, but more like Perplexity.ai (more on this AI tool here) – a cross between Google search and ChatGPT conversations. This new feature emphasizes the importance of sourcing in the age of information overload (not to mention information lawsuits) and AI-generated content.

Offering a quick way to verify the information provided by ChatGPT is sure to make it more than just a conversational AI tool. As a writer/editor who researches a lot, this is a particularly useful addition. Instead of having to copy/paste the info ChatGPT provides into Google to verify it, you can now just click on the source.

Speaking of which, Sam Altman, OpenAI’s CEO, has said that he would like to integrate ChatGPT with Search, so keep your eye open for that feature….

Related Content: New Perplexity Ads: What Marketers Need to Know

Why Marketers and Businesses Should Care

ChatGPT’s new prominent links (with the brand name) could be significant for businesses and marketers for several reasons, such as:

  • Brand Awareness: If ChatGPT cites a business’s website as a source, it can be a valuable form of brand awareness. Users who click the link will be directed to the business’s content, potentially leading to new customers or clients.
  • Increased Transparency: Links can help users understand the source of ChatGPT’s information and determine its credibility. This can be especially important for factual topics where users need to trust the information they receive.
  • Content Marketing Opportunities: For businesses involved in content creation, the more prominent links feature could be leveraged to drive traffic to their own published content, assuming it’s among the sources ChatGPT uses.
  • Competitive Intelligence: Marketers can use ChatGPT to research topics related to their industry and easily access the sources of information, providing insights into competitors’ content strategy, industry trends and emerging themes.
  • Improved SEO & Backlink Strategy: Links from ChatGPT (especially if from the paid, high-use tiers) could potentially have a positive impact on a website’s SEO, leading to increased backlinks and traffic from users. This is because search engines consider backlinks when ranking websites.

Graph showing the #1 result on Google have 3.8x more backlinks

On the other hand, it’s important to remember a few other points:

  • Limited Exposure: Source links are currently only available in the paid versions of ChatGPT, so the reach may be limited compared to the free version.
  • Click-Through Rate: It’s unclear how many users will actually click on the provided links.
  • Outdated Information: Since ChatGPT is trained on a massive dataset, there’s a chance the linked information might be outdated.

So will websites that are cited in ChatGPT’s results see an increase in traffic? At this point, only time will tell. In the meantime, check out this helpful article… 👇

Related Content: How to Optimize Your Brand for ChatGPT 🤖

Are ChatGPT’s Links Trustworthy?

As anyone who’s used ChatGPT long enough knows, this AI tool has a tendency to make up sh*t – or, as the more diplomatic OpenAI calls it, “hallucinate.” Several times I have asked it to provide a source, or at least more information, on a particular fact or case study it mentioned (with specific statistics), to which it replied, “Sorry! I may have made that up.”

So the question here is: Will ChatGPT make up sources/links, too?

Yes, ChatGPT may provide links that are broken, outdated or completely fabricated, even including fake journal names and publication details. Remember, its knowledge cut-off date is at least a year behind the rest of the world. This is a known issue with large language models like ChatGPT, as they do not actually have true “knowledge” – they are just predicting text based on patterns in their training data.

When ChatGPT provides a source link, it is important to verify the link and the information. You can also report broken, outdated or incorrect source links to OpenAI, either via ChatGPT’s interface in the bottom right corner:

Screenshot showing where to find the help page to report inaccurate or outdated links in ChatGPT

Or via the OpenAI Developer Forum (or Community Forum), or via OpenAI’s social media (Twitter, LinkedIn).

Key Takeaways on ChatGPT’s Prominent Links

While ChatGPT has indeed made source links more visible in its responses, this feature is currently limited to paid subscribers. The change aims to provide more transparency around where the information is coming from.

This is important because it enhances the tool’s utility, making it more than just a fun AI conversationalist. It not only improves the user experience by facilitating access to original content, but also supports the broader digital ecosystem through acknowledgment for content creators.

This development came as a result of, and continues to emphasize, the importance of transparency, reliability and ethical considerations in the age of artificial intelligence.

Key Takeaways:

  • OpenAI has announced that they are making links more prominent when ChatGPT browses the internet.
  • This new feature will display the name of the website the information is from, along with a clickable link to the source, to make it easier for users to discover the original content.
  • This feature is currently in a rollout phase, so it might not be available to all users yet.
  • This update is only available to paid ChatGPT Plus, Team and Enterprise subscribers, not the free version.
  • Some users (mostly publishers) have welcomed this change as a way for OpenAI to address concerns about ChatGPT’s use of web-scraping to train its model without explicit permission from content creators.

If you’re ready to transform your business with AI technology, Single Grain’s AI experts can help!👇

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ChatGPT FAQs

  • Can ChatGPT provide links?

    Yes, ChatGPT can now provide prominent links in its responses! This feature is currently in a rollout phase, so it might not be available to all users yet. Additionally, it’s currently limited to the paid versions of ChatGPT (Plus and higher tiers).

  • How do I feed links to ChatGPT?

    At this time, ChatGPT doesn’t seem to have a way for users to directly feed it links or specific sources. However, with the new update, it can access and surface relevant links from its own training data when it generates responses.

  • How do I share chat on GPT?

    Unfortunately, there isn’t a built-in way to directly share your conversations on ChatGPT. However, you can copy and paste the conversation or take screenshots to share it elsewhere.

If you were unable to find the answer you’ve been looking for, do not hesitate to get in touch and ask us directly.
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