Google has advised SEOs to optimise for a variety of factors and consider taking different paths to get their desired outcome after stating that search is “not a science”.
In a new podcast titled ‘Search Off the Record’, Google webmaster trends analyst John Mueller said that SEOs often focus on individual components and specific ranking factors rather than looking at the bigger picture.
Mueller has often stated in the past that there are no quick fixes for ranking issues, but instead a range of best practices such as publishing quality content that can help to deliver results over time.
In the latest podcast, Mueller said that every site is different and that not everyone has to do the same thing.
He noted: “I think that’s really important to keep in mind in the sense that there is no absolute truth out there with regards to which page should be ranking for which query.”
Mueller added that there are “multiple ways” to achieve search success and that blindly following one or two ranking factors is not always needed to get the desired end result.
Mueller went on to say that is also difficult to pinpoint a factor that may carry more weight for a particular search query.
This is because, for some sites and specific queries, the factor may be very important, while for others, it may not play a significant role at all.
With so many moving parts and the evolving nature of search, Mueller instead recommends optimising for a variety of factors.
He added that a “diversity” of factors can help websites to maintain a stable position in search engines, even though, again, it is never guaranteed.
Google’s Gary Illyes concluded the podcast by revealing that it takes user feedback from testing on board before it rolls out algorithm updates.