Description Tag/Snippet

SEO Playbook
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A snippet or a description also influences your CTR like the title.

It is shown in the summary part of the search results and users often use that to make a decision on whether the page will answer their query.

Meta descriptions aren’t used as a direct ranking signal. Having a great meta description leads to better CTR on SERPs which is indirectly a ranking factor.

Google generally uses the meta description tag on the page to determine the most appropriate snippet to show on the result pages.

Google will also consider structured data of the page to determine the best fit (more on this later).

However, it will show different snippets based on a number of factors such as

  • Keyword stuffing the description tag.
  • Repetitive description tag across the site
  • Generalizes the concept but doesn’t summarize the page.
  • Either too short or too long.

The best practice to write great meta descriptions to show on the Google search snippets are

  • Create a unique description for each page of the site.
  • Include and topicalize each description to the theme of the page
  • Use attributes in the description like titles, prices, ingredients and so on.
  • Use Active Voice with Action Oriented Signals.

Google displayed no more than 155 characters of a page’s meta description in its listing. In 2017, Google increased the length of meta descriptions to 300 characters.

You can technically create meta descriptions of any length, but Google will truncate them if they are longer than 300 characters.

Consider writing your meta descriptions as an AD or a tweet.

Essentially, you are looking at writing a highly engaging tweet that could potentially be seen by millions of people and has to have the power to draw them in to learn more about what you are offering.

The core of a meta description centers on good salesmanship, as you are essentially creating an advertisement that is meant to appeal to potential customers.

Therefore, you want your meta description to clearly state your intentions in a way that combines direct marketing with some creative flair.