Meta titles and descriptions are a very important piece to ensuring your website is seen by Google and internet users. By optimising your website’s meta titles and descriptions, you can boost your SEO and customer conversions.
But what are a meta title and description and how can you craft them to produce positive business results?
Continue reading to learn more about meta titles, descriptions, and best practices for writing them for your web pages.
What is a Meta Title?
Imagine you’re at a book store looking for a novel to read for an upcoming trip. You have a genre in mind but you don’t have a specific book you’re looking for. As you browse the shelves, certain titles attract your attention and encourage you to possibly read the summary.
A meta title is like a book title for your webpage.
When searching Google for information, a service, a product, etc., Google will first use the meta title of all of your pages to determine if your website is a good search result for a user’s query. If it is, then Google will display your website on their search result page.
Then, as they browse their search results, each meta title will act as a book title – hopefully encouraging them to read the meta description (book summary) and/or click the URL to visit your website.
What is a Meta Description?
Continuing with our example above, the meta description is a summary of your webpage. Remember, each page will have a meta title and description. Similar to a book summary, the meta description gives a quick overview of the information on the page.
Just like the meta title, Google uses the meta description as additional information to help determine if your website fits a user’s query.
In addition, if Google does display your website as a search result, the user will see and can quickly read your meta description to further determine if they want to visit your webpage.
Tips for Writing Meta Title and Description
As you’ve probably gleaned from above, writing a strong meta title and description can help boost your SEO efforts and convert search users to customers. Though short, your meta title and description can be a powerful tool for growing your business!
Let’s look at a few tips for crafting a solid meta title and description
Include Webpage Keyword
Each page you’ve created for your webpage has a purpose. From the about page to services pages, to even blog posts, each page has specific information and keywords per the function of the page.
When crafting your meta title and description, it’s very important to also add the page keywords. The keywords assist Google and users in finding your webpage and plucking it from the shelf for further review.
Keep It Short and Sweet
We’re used to hearing that our attention spans are decreasing every year, but this isn’t the only reason to keep your meta title and description as concise as possible.
As you write your meta title and description with the page keywords, try to use the least amount of words possible to describe the purpose/information of the page. This is because Google will only display a certain number of characters in the search results for your webpage. If you’re title and description are drawn out, users will not be able to quickly determine if your webpage is a good fit for their query and will continue to scroll through the rest of their results.
As a general rule, keep your meta title between 50-60 characters and your meta description between 150-160 characters.
Add a CTA
For most pages, you will be able to add a call-to-action (CTA) to your meta description (and possibly even the title). A call-to-action tells the users to complete an action like “click here to learn more” or “visit our page to sign up.”
For meta descriptions, the CTA can be more subtle since, presumably, the user is already searching for a specific topic that your webpage covers. Once quickly describing the content on the page, the CTA could simply be “learn more about how to setup…” or “start your business strategy with these top tips,” etc.
Instead of explicitly telling a user to click the link, you can encourage action by again pushing what they will gain by visiting your website.
Do Not Reuse Titles and Descriptions
Though it may be tempting, especially if you have similar pages, do not reuse meta titles and descriptions. From a technical SEO perspective, it confuses Google. When a user searches for a relevant topic, instead of Google pulling up one page, it will pull up all pages with the same metadata – which will cause your content to compete against each other and hurt your overall SEO.
In addition, duplicate metadata is seen as unhelpful in Google’s eyes and you will be dinged for it. Per recent Google search updates, your content should be as helpful as possible to the user and this includes unique meta titles and descriptions tailored to the specific page.
Meta Title and Description Examples
To help your writing process, here are a few great meta title and description examples:
Mailchimp opens with the number of customers they have to build brand loyalty and trust.
Studiocart concisely summarises its audience and the business value of the plugin.
Amelia uses the title and description to tell Google and the user the exact function of the plugin.
I hope this was helpful! Explore more websites for more online business tips!