Martina Mercer

What Are Meta Descriptions and How Should You Write Them?

There has been a lot of discussion surrounding Meta Descriptions of late. What are Meta Descriptions? How do I write Meta Descriptions? Where can I find Meta Descriptions? Should keywords be in my Meta Descriptions? We’re here to help. Meta descriptions are very important in SEO and even in PPC advertising, as they perform multiple actions that can impact the success of your conversions, your SEO and your website.

What Are Meta Descriptions?

Meta Descriptions are the page description of your website that Google reads/ scans to see what your page is about. They appear in the header before the body text and underneath the page title and are usually a general summary of the content on that page.

In the past, people also used Meta Keywords, which would be a list of keywords used in the content, to help Google determine where to place your site on the search engines. Although some sites still add meta keywords, Google no longer looks at these when crawling. It’s all about the Meta Title and Description.

If you are built on WordPress, a plug in like Yoast will help you write your meta descriptions easily. Otherwise, ask your developer to insert Meta Titles and Descriptions into the header.

Should Keywords be in the Meta Descriptions?

Keywords should be in the Meta Descriptions but you shouldn’t overdo it. The text should read naturally. Some people use the meta descriptions in the same way as the old Meta Keywords were used, simply citing a list of keywords. This is a mistake. Google is clever, they will know from one or two keywords in your description, how to present your website and what to look for in the remaining content. Personally, I wouldn’t try to rank for more than a few keywords per page. If you need to rank for more keywords, create separate pages and posts to do so.

What Should I Write in My Meta Descriptions?

Your meta descriptions are a summary of the content, but it’s also a good idea to make sure there is a keyword in there. Remember, your visitors see your Meta Descriptions as snippets through the results they are presented on Google. This means, your descriptions, not only need to be optimised but they also need to entice and sell. In organic SEO, these are your advertisements, the text that makes a potential customer want to learn more.

Examples of Meta Descriptions

For example, if you sell handmade leather shoes your Meta Title and description may look something like this, using Handmade leather shoes as your keyword:

  • Title: Buy Italian Handmade Leather Shoes Online
  • Meta Description: Buy Italian handmade leather shoes online in our handmade leather shoe store. Choose from the highest quality leather and enjoy free delivery when you spend over £50

All you really need to remember is this is your chance to sell, to advertise and to show Google what your website is about.

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