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A guide to a successful meta description

September 29, 2014

guide to a successful meta descriptionWait, meta-what?

If you are unfamiliar with the term, this is a good opportunity to introduce you to the purpose, dynamics and importance of a meta description.

What is a meta description?

A meta description is the informative text below the link, URL and other details (date etc.) of a SERP listing. Words that match the keywords used in the search are bolded in the meta description.

What is the purpose of a meta description?

The purpose of a meta description is similar to that of the title: to persuade the searcher into clicking the link. However, due to it being more extensive than the title, it also provides the search engine user with a brief summary of the contents of the page.

Why is it so important?

The importance of the meta description is already clearly illustrated by the aforementioned. A concrete, detailed and convincing meta description is a powerful tool in exciting the interest of potential visitors. In general, the better your meta description, the higher the CTR you will get from an organic search.

So how can I write a successful meta description?

Number 1 – Use action-oriented language. Starting your meta descriptions with verbs such as ‘learn’ or ‘find out’ and then with a clear statement gives you an idea of what we mean.

Number 2 – Keep it short. It is best to keep your meta description between 150 and 160 characters (characters, nor words). Search engines truncate snippets over 160 characters long, while less than 150 means that you probably did not take full advantage of the space you were given to persuade the searcher. Here is a link where you can measure your meta description’s length:

Number 3 – Relevance and clarity. Of course, the content of a meta description should be relevant with that of the respective page (you do not want to deceive potential re-visitors) and precise – if, after going through the description, a searcher has not yet got a clear grasp of what they will read about after clicking on the link, they will most likely move on to the next one.

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