Meta description 101: Best practices

Short snippets of information that inform readers about your web page on search engines, meta descriptions can be the make or break factor for traffic to your website. Apart from understanding what is meta description, follow these meta description best practices to garner more leads in 2021.

Posted by Team Edisol

While meta descriptions may seem like a small part of SEO, they are among the first elements a user reads and serve as invitations to visit your web page or website. These short snippets of information tell your reader whether your content is worthwhile. The quality of your meta description tag is often the barrier between garnering leads and hence the need for SEO meta description best practices arises.

Learning how to write a good meta description is step #1. But optimising it is equally important if you are to boost your site’s click-through rate (CTR) and make a compelling first impression.

Here’s a rundown on what is a meta description tag, how to write a meta tag, and some of the well-known meta description best practices.

What is meta description?

A meta description is a tiny blurb of text that usually appears below your title in search pages. It describes what the article or content is about, giving readers an idea of what to expect from the website. Technically speaking, the answer to the common question, ‘What are the meta tags?’ is that they are HTML attributes that go along the lines of:

Screenshot 2021-01-19 102647.png

Write a keyword-rich yet brief synopsis of your content to improve your CTR and help you divert traffic to your website.

What should be the length of meta description?

For Google, meta descriptions should not exceed ~160 characters. But since you want to provide value, your meta description must have some meat and so 50-150 characters is a safe bet.

Why is meta description important?

Though Google maintains that meta descriptions have no effect on rankings, it has been observed that meta descriptions directly impact click-through rates. Click-through rates determine the amount of traffic to your website, and higher volume of traffic impacts your site’s ranking. Therefore, a well-written meta description will make your website more attractive to readers, lead them to your page and thereby improve your search ranking.

What are the meta description best practices to try in 2021?

Equipped with the knowledge about what is meta description in SEO, start writing top-notch meta descriptions with the following tips.

Be honest in your synopsis: Provide necessary information in your meta description, while being true to what your content really addresses. Writing false, clickbait meta descriptions may fetch you readers, but they will quickly see through the hoax. This will lead to loss of credibility, which can cause your ranking to plummet.

Include a call to action (CTA): If you want people to visit your page and engage with you, you need to positively invite that kind of response. Something like ‘get it today’ or ‘claim your deal’ is a good way to round up your meta description.

Add keywords to your meta description: What’s the first thing you see when you type a query in Google? Results that are closest to your query with the keywords highlighted in the meta description. So, by tactfully inserting core keywords you can boost your CTR. Ensure you add different types of keywords to boost your SEO strategy.

Integrate trending topics into your text: Before you craft a meta description for your page, research and list out trending topics. Consider integrating these into your content to make your description more relevant.

Do not sound robotic: Since the format for meta descriptions remains the same, you need to ensure that your prose does not sound repetitive. So, find novel ways of getting the message across without deviating from the important details of your content.

Let benefits take centre stage: With limited characters to work with, you must weigh the worth of every word before inserting it. When doing so, try to encompass the main takeaways your reader will get from your content.

Maintain suspense: At times, inviting your reader to read about what s/he is missing out on is a good tactic. You can use this ploy during marketing campaigns.

Now that you know how to write a meta description, work towards improving your site’s CTR. While you’re optimising meta description tags, ensure that your blogs shine and leverage topic clusters too! With strategic meta tags and strategic blogs, your content will be well on its way to garnering leads. To ensure a seamless fit of content into your larger marketing strategy, grow your business with us.