Is the META Description tag really worth any time and energy? Compared to other aspects of on-site SEO, this one doesn’t provide the kind of ranking and authority that impact rankings significantly. In spite of this, there’s an important reason for using it that’s often overlooked.
META Description provides and easy and succinct way to summarize the contents of a page, but it can be substantially longer than the title tag. The real benefit of this tag is in writing a sales hook that will encourage a visitor to click in spite of its position on a page. Here are two examples found in Google when searching for the term "birthday gifts":
Unique Gift Ideas, Gifts, Unusual Gifts, Birthday Gift Ideas, Unique Gifts, Gifts For Men, Gift Ideas, Corporate Gifts, Birthday Gifts, Gift Ideas.
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The first results comes from a keyword stuffed section of the page content and reads more like a ransom note than a description of the site. The second one, even though ranked lower, has a nice message, a call to action, relevance and it’s easy to read. It conveys the image of a place that someone might like to shop. Sure, it’s not keyword stuffed and may not rank as well, but relevance was the key here. I passed over the first result because it just didn’t have a good feel to it. There’s not doubting that both sites intended for the visitor to see exactly what was shown, but the one with the clear message and call to action wins the day.
META Description optimization is one of the easier on-page optimizations that can be made. Despite is relatively lower importance in ranking, the sales punch it can provide makes it worthwhile to include it in your SEO plans.
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