What is a meta description?

Posted by adam nike on November 18th, 2019

So, What is a meta description?

A meta description is an HTML tag in the HTML code of your website.

Which allows you to customize a section of text that describes the page itself. It plays a role in how your page is seen by search engine crawlers, and how it appears in SERPs.

In your website builder, you likely have a box labelled “meta description,” where you can add text to apply to your page. In the back end of your HTML code, you’ll see something like this: <meta name=”description” content=”This is the meta description you’ll write for your page.“/>

Google’s search engine crawlers “understand” that meta tags in the back end of your code are meant to describe the nature of the content of your pages. It’s not certain whether it’s affects your rankings directly, but it can affect your ranking in indirect ways.

As you learn, you’ll notice they’re also frequently used as part of a page’s entry in a SERP.

Run any Google search, and you’ll see a list of web pages. The title of the website will be highlighted in blue and prominent, and underneath that, you’ll see the URL for the page in green. Right below that, you’ll see a section of black text, this is usually the meta description of the page.

If your meta description is effective in this persuasion, you’ll see a higher click-through rate (CTR).

Which is beneficial both for your total organic traffic and for your search rankings (most likely, CTR might be correlated with higher search rankings, rather than being a root cause).

What is the purpose of ? 

The meta description is your chance to tell both web crawlers and human users what your page is about.

For web crawlers, it serves as a context for understanding the relevance of your page. For human users, it’s a chance to see what the page (and the brand) are all about. Lastly, you, it’s an opportunity to rank higher for relevant searches and persuade more web users to visit your site, instead of a competitor’s in the SERPs.

 

Elements of an effective meta description

When writing an effective meta description, you’ll have two main goals. You’ll want to appease search engine crawlers to earn higher rankings for relevant keywords.

You’ll want to persuade more people to click on your SERP listing rather than a competing one.

 

The length

First, you’ll need to keep the length concise and short enough to fall within the limits of search engine crawlers. Historically, the limit for meta description length has been 155 characters, but Google recently bumped that up to 320.

Even with that longer upper limit, it’s a good idea to keep your meta descriptions tight. That way, users will be more likely to read all of your text, and you’ll have a lower chance of getting cut off by mobile or another special formatting.

Try to keep it to 160 characters or fewer and use a maximum of two sentences. For your reference, this sentence is 51 characters. More information of meta description.


adam nike

About the Author

adam nike
Joined: November 18th, 2019
Articles Posted: 1

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