What is the Meta Description?
What is Meta Description?
Meta description is a short and informative explanation of what a website is all about. It is displayed below the title of a page on SERP. It should be a summary of what a user would see, if they click on a website’s link. Some market participants believe in the Meta Description effectiveness on SEO, as it can be effective in increasing the CTR or Click-Through Rate, which is a necessary but not sufficient factor to improve SEO, whilst another group of professionals don’t agree with its effectiveness. You can read “Improve my CTR” and “SEO Services” to find out more.
Once a user searches for a subject on the internet, a fight will be started between all relevant Meta Descriptions in order to encourage the user to click on their own URL.
Think about these sentences:
- Special Seasonal Promotion
- 50% off
- New Collections’ Sale
If you see such a promotion on a store’s showcase, it would most likely draw your attention and encourage you to step into the store.
That’s almost the same thing on the internet.
Once a user looks for something on Google and Google responds back with say 10 results, it is like that the user is walking down a street and there are 10 stores presenting their products. Which one will be chosen? It depends on some elements such as names, offers, appearance and most importantly the showcase.
Meta Description of a Website in Search Result Page Is Similar to a Store’s Showcase.
Meta Description from different point of view
Meta Description in general, was introduced above in the very first paragraph of this article. Though, there are different perspectives for which, there are different meanings, when talking about Meta Description.
Here, we will discuss what Meta Description means from a different perspective.
From Google’ Robots Point of View
Meta Description is a HTML tag which is placed on the page structure codes, and will be presented to Google’s algorithms as below:
<meta name=”description” content=”A page’s description, usually one or two sentences.”/>
From user’s point of view
Meta description, after the webpage SEO subject, is the second most important factor in search engine result pages. It is displayed below the webpage subject in a bigger space, though in a smaller font. On average, the number of characters which are allowed to be displayed as Meta Description is around 168, though it can be different based on the searched keywords and page contents.
Meta Description in WordPress
Fortunately, there are several plugins in WordPress that make the Meta Description optimization easier for us. For example, “Yoast” plugin offers useful features for SEO and Meta Description Optimization. One of these features provides the capability to determine a specific “Subject” and “Meta Description” for each page. To do so, you only need to install the plugin and put the data in the “Yoast” section.
5 Things about Meta Description that Nobody Knows!
Now, you have a clear mind about what Meta Description is and why it should be considered as an important factor for our website’s SEO. From now on, we will discuss the important factors that a good Meta Description must have.
1- Up to 158 characters or more
Google has changed the maximum allowed number of Meta description characters many times. However, it seems that 158 is a safe number to count on. In fact, there is not a magic number of characters, as it depends on what you want to show to a specific audience. Based on our experience, a summarized and attractive explanation suits better for many users.
2- Using a relevant wording
Writing a summary of what your page is offering, will not be enough to attract users. It is better to use an interesting structure and wording to be placed in front of users’ eyes. You should try to understand and foresee the users’ thoughts and needs when searching for a relevant subject and put the description together accordingly.
3- Having a “Call-to-Action”
Meta description without a “call-to-action” wouldn’t work. If you, in the Meta Description text, do not direct users to do something in your page, the explanation is almost useless! You can use “call-to-action” sentences such as below:
- By reading this article, you would realize the “Black Hat SEO” in detail
- By downloading our free SEO ebook, you will be able to learn SEO from basic to advanced levels.
- By purchasing the newest mobile holders, you won’t be concerned about sticking anymore.
4- Including Targeted Keywords
Keywords play a crucial role in Meta Description. In fact, the importance of keywords is a mutual subject among all articles on the internet which are explaining Meta Description. All market participants consider Keywords as a very effective factor on Meta Description. We would recommend you to mostly use LSI keywords in your descriptions. If you don’t know what LSI is, we suggest you read the “LSI Keywords” article.
5- Showing the product’s features (For ecommerce Websites)
If you have an ecommerce website, Meta Description is one of the best places to present attractive features of your products. The more useful and attractive description you present, the more clicks you get.
You can also use “Schema-Markup” for the products’ features. By using this method, a bigger place in the search page will be dedicated to your website.
Now that you have an enlightened mind about what a good Meta Description is, we would take you through a few steps to take, in order to write a good Meta Description.
How to write a good Meta Description in 3 steps?
First step: Present an informative and summarized description of the page content for users. In other words, the user should instantly understand what type of information is provided in your webpage.
Second Step: Trigger users’ curiosity by utilizing attractive descriptions. As an example, you can add Special Offer or Big Sale to increase your chance of getting more users.
If the page contains textual contents, you can boost your click rate by adding something like real examples or download free eBooks.
Third Step: Utilize the similar keywords suggested by Google in your Meta Description test. That would attract users who search for similar keywords through to your website in addition to other users who search for your specific keywords.