I am a Ph.D. student and recently I solved an important problem in my domain. Unfortunately, the paper got rejected stating that the results are interesting but incremental.
I discussed this issue with my peers. They said that they have gone through the similar rejection scenarios.
This thing is worrying me a lot. I picked that particular problem statement thinking that solving it would be a great contribution. And, my supervisor thought the same. However, we were able to solve the problem based on existing techniques and there are about 1-2 novel ideas in our work. It means our solution is simple and elegant.
If somebody would have solved the same problem with a rather complicated set of techniques while overlooking the simpler ones; that paper probably would have got accepted. My question is why the paper is judged based on it being incremental while it still being non-trivial? Why a work is not given more importance based on the value of the result instead of the method of obtaining it? Furthermore, I believe that simpler results should be preferred by the community instead of the complicated ones. And, they should completely omit the term "incremental" in their reviews. It is quite frustrating. Even the Google Scholar's tagline is "Stand on the shoulders of giants" :/