Although the meta description tag doesn’t influence the rankings of your web pages much, it can have a major influence on the number of clicks that you get. By attracting more clicks, good meta descriptions can also have a positive influence on your rankings.
What are meta descriptions and why are they still important?
The meta description tag can be found in the HTML code of a web page:
<meta name="description" content="This is the meta description text. If it is relevant, search engines will display it on the search result page.">
Some people think that meta descriptions are not important anymore. However, Google Webmaster Tools shows an alert if a meta description is not unique. That’s an indicator that the descriptions still matter.
- Good meta descriptions can attract more clicks and a higher click-through rate.
- A higher click-through rate can have a positive effect on the rankings of the web page.
In other words: good meta descriptions can deliver new customers to your website while contributing to your rankings at the same time.
How to optimize your meta descriptions
- Meta descriptions should be unique: each page on your website should have its own meta description.
- Meta descriptions should be relevant: boilerplate meta descriptions won’t do your website good. The meta description should be relevant to the content of the page.
- Include a call to action: think of what you want a user to do when they visit your page and then include a call to action in the description. The following verbs might help you: buy, download, shop, browse, download, etc.
- Show your USP: tell your customers what makes you different and highlight this unique proposition in the meta description.
Web searchers have many options on the result page. Offer something special to attract their clicks. The meta description tag is not an immediate ranking factor. If you want to get listed on Google’s first result page, optimize the content of your web pages and try to get good backlinks to your site.
Then optimize the meta descriptions of your web pages to make sure that you get as many visitors as possible through your rankings.
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