Description Tag Guide to Achieve High CTR on Google Page Results

by SEO-Builder January 20, 2019
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The description tag is typically 155 characters long and is visible in the snippets of search engine search results. Its function is to briefly summarise the content of a specified page and invite the user to action. Optimising the description meta tag is a very important aspect of your on-page SEO optimisation and should be part of every SEO checklist. Although the description meta tag may not directly affect rankings, Google uses the Click-Through Ratio (CTR) data (i.e., how many of the visitors that saw you among the search page results visited your website) to evaluate how you should be ranking, so it has a strong indirect benefit.

A good meta description tag should either complete the title tag, provide the most complete and coherent short description, or prompt users to action. The most crucial goal you have to set for yourself is to give the user browsing among the search page results a good reason to choose you among the rest. When writing your description tag it will be helpful for you to consider the following suggestions:

  • It should be under 155 characters. There is no exact and correct number, but anything above 155 characters will be cut off in the search page results. You must fit the message that you are conveying to the users in at most 2 sentences.
  • Make it informative. This is the last step before the visitor decides whether they will go into your site or not. Avoid any complex terminologies and ambiguous messages. Make it clear, authentic, and short, while providing all the necessary information.
  • It is good to contain a Call to Action. In order to increase sales, you must include messages that motivate people to take action. Invitations like Learn more, Contact us, Try for free, are good suggestions.
  • Must comply with the content of your page. This is crucial. Google can quickly identify descriptions that trick visitors into entering websites with irrelevant content. Google does that by monitoring the bounce rate for your pages, which is the ratio of people that left your site straight after landing on it. Your rankings may even be penalised if your meta description is completely misleading or has no connection to your content.
  • It is a good idea to include an important keyword. If the meta description has an important keyword phrase, Google will be more likely to use it and tag it in search results. This will make your website even more relevant for that keyword.
  • The meta description tag must be unique. It is not sensible for your description tag to be copied from somewhere else. Google has always been more favourable in ranking unique content.
  • It may contain structured content. If you offer any product, it may be a good idea to emphasise on the technical characteristics of the product. Include information about the product’s manufacturer, specifications, price, etc. If users are specifically looking for it, chances will be on your side.

Now that you have read our recommendations, you may now feel that you want to change the description tag on most, if not all, of your pages. What if they are too many! How can you find time to do all of that? If you do not have the time to create a description for each page, try prioritising your most important pages. Make sure to include carefully designed descriptions to those pages that you want to rank high in the search results first, such as your homepage.

Description Tag Guide

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