If you are confused about how to write the Meta Description, you are not the only one. To help clear this confusion, I’ll look at what makes a great meta description and share 15 examples for you to learn to write a good Meta Description.
You’ll also learn why your site’s meta descriptions are important, as well as the best length for meta descriptions (especially considering changing Google policies).
What is Meta Description
A meta description is an HTML element that contains a short summary of your page and creates a brief snippet that you’ll see below the site address in Google organic search results. Here is an example of what it usually looks like:
Why is it important to write a meta description?
In September 2009, Google announced that text in meta descriptions and descriptive keywords does not enter into its search ranking algorithms.
But meta descriptions are still important for two reasons:
- It helps convince people to click on your site link directly.
- Since Google measures click-through rate (CTR), it may indirectly improve your rankings by increasing your site’s organic CTR.
How long should your meta description be?
When Google increased the length of search descriptions to 320 characters back in December 2017, SEOs got really excited and started writing Meta Descriptions for their sites. So it’s no surprise that many began to be stunned in May 2018 when Google unexpectedly reduced the length to 160 characters.
In other words, Google wants reliable, high-quality content in search. You don’t need to read between the lines to understand that Google wants people to focus on improving the quality of their content rather than modifying meta description examples to get visitors to their sites.
Caution: Google doesn’t always use meta descriptions
It’s important to know that Google will not always display your descriptions as intended. In fact, according to Moz’s analysis, only 35.9% of the original meta description tags are shown “as is” in Google search.
The Moz study, which examined 70,059 original meta description examples, found that:
- In 15.4% of cases Google used the original meta description tag but added some text.
- In 51.3% of cases, the view snippet completely matched or fully contained the meta description tag.
- In 3.2% of cases, the view snippet used a truncated version of the meta description tag with an ellipsis at the end.
How to write a great Meta Description
To type 160 characters or not to type 160 characters? this is the question.
My advice? Use 160 characters for meta descriptions, but don’t bother with them i.e. if the description is 161 characters long then don’t waste time on it. Instead, focus on these tips:
- Stick to your content that shows your brand and tone of writing, but keep it conversational, too.
- Include your primary keyword if you can do this naturally.
- Make sure that you give value to the reader by making them understand well what they are reading.
- Include a call to action, such as “More info here.”
- Actively type as if you were recording a voice.
- Make sure the meta description of your writing matches your content – don’t trick the user into clicking the link.
- Keep in mind that meta descriptions may be truncated when displayed in search, so use the first 120 characters to communicate your most important message.
- Make sure every page on your site has a unique meta description – don’t use the same description on multiple pages.