Danny Sullivan Presentation Google News - SEO Gazette

Rethinking SEO – Insights from Google’s Danny Sullivan

Nov. 17, 2023 12:01 pm PST | SEO Gazette | By Luke Ross

Google Presentation Causes a Stir in SEO Community

After Google’s groundbreaking presentation last week, Danny Sullivan challenged the SEO industry to reconsider their interpretations of Google’s guidance and documentation. Sullivan highlighted a significant gap between what Google communicates and what the SEO community derives from it.

A striking example Sullivan gave was the widespread adoption of author pages and bylines in the publishing industry. Contrary to popular belief, Google’s algorithm does not specifically seek these elements, a misconception stemming from Google’s documentation.

The core message of the presentation according to Search Engine Journal was not about dismissing specific SEO practices, such as author pages, but rather to address the broader issue of interpretation of Google’s guidelines.

Sullivan emphasized, “The gap between what Google says to creators and what creators hear about being successful in Google Search needs to get better. That’s largely on us. It’s something we’ll be working on. People-first content remains the path to success, but we hopefully can find better ways to communicate this…”

He critiqued how the SEO community often takes Google’s advice too literally, misunderstanding the broader goals that the company aims to communicate. For instance, Google’s suggestions on instilling trust through author pages and similar features were not directives but rather guidelines to think about content trustworthiness.

Sullivan’s presentation marked a significant shift in how SEO professionals should approach Google’s documentation. He urged the community to reconsider their understanding of Google’s algorithms and the way websites are ranked. This involves a more critical analysis of Google’s guidance, differentiating between literal instructions and broader strategic goals.

An important takeaway from this is the realization that Google’s recent updates largely reiterated decades-old advice about creating helpful, people-first content. The difference now lies in the technological advancements that enable Google to align its ranking signals more closely with these long-standing principles.

Sullivan concluded on X with a call for more critical thinking in the SEO industry, advising professionals to distinguish between Google’s actual statements and the interpretations made by others.

In summary, Google’s presentation is a turning point for SEO, urging a reconsideration of how its guidance is perceived and applied. This shift in perspective is crucial for staying aligned with the evolving landscape of search engine optimization.

Article written by Luke Ross, The SEO Gazette

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