Meta Description Optimization

A free guide to the basics of optimizing your meta descriptions.

A unique, properly written & optimized meta description is imperative for effective search engine optimization. Paired with an optimized page title the meta description establishes the page’s relevancy for search engine spiders.

The content of the meta description is also important for gaining attention and promoting more click-throughs, since the meta description is often displayed as the search results ‘snippet’.

The meta description should be brief, but should include your brand, target phrases and language that encourages searchers to click your listing in the search results.

Page Title appears in search results

Optimizing Meta Descriptions

Meta Description Technical Details

Placement

The meta description tag should reside  with other meta tags in the <HEAD></HEAD> of a document.

Format

<META NAME=”Description” CONTENT=”This is where the description content goes.

Limitations

Maximum character limit – 250 characters

Description optimization tips

  • IMPORTANT: Use unique descriptions, avoid using the same description across multiple pages
  • Limit meta description to 250 characters (max), we recommend you stick to around 150 characters
  • Limit the number of targeted phrases to 2-3 closely related (max)
  • Limit the repetition of target phrases, avoid ‘keyword stuffing’
  • Include exact target phrases early in the meta description
  • Include phrases relevant to the page content, avoid phrases the content doesn’t support
  • Include sufficient relevant content with-in the meta description (ie not just keyword list)
  • Include compelling language and a call-to-action with-in the meta description
  • Avoid repeating similar phrases close together  (ie …free SEO guide. SEO guides are…)
  • Avoid using special characters if possible (registration marks, copyright symbols etc)

Optimized meta description examples

Assuming the target phrase is “Free SEO Guide” here are a few examples of meta descriptions with varying qualities of optimization.

Poor Meta Description:
”  …  ” (blank)
“///// L@@K!!! This is a page with ideas for making your stuff better!!! \\\\\\\”

Better Meta Description:
“Saversites.com provides this simple, free SEO Guide. SEO Guides are great for optimizing your website. If you want a great free SEO guide, this SEO Guide from SaverSites.com is the best free SEO guide of all the free SEO guides in the history of the world!!!”

Best Meta Description:
“Free SEO guide – No download necessary. Discover easy-to-apply SEO tips for both beginners & veteran webmasters in this free SEO guide from SaverSites.com.”