Why META tags still matter.

Thursday, February 11th, 2010
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You may not know it but you see the results of the META title and description tags every time you use a search engine.  The title and short description that is displayed on the Search Engine Results Page (or SERP) is actually taken directly from the META tags coded into your site.

META tags are a part of the underlying HTML code that makes up your website. They provide search engines with important information about your site such as page titles, descriptions, and keywords. Unfortunately, properly optimized META tags are often overlooked as many people are unsure of what benefit they provide.

serp-meta-tag-example-austin-web-design


The above example shows the Search Engine Result for the Google Translate page. Notice that they included a relevant description of the page in the title as well as a brief description of what the page offers.

The key with these META tags is to think of them as your billboard on the Search Engine Results Page. The META Title is the headline that grabs peoples attention and the META Description is the short summary that draws them in.

Here are a few tips for working with your own META title and META description tags:

META Title:

  • Give each page a unique title
  • Make sure the title is relevant to the content on the page
  • For maximum compatibility with all search engine make sure your META title is no more than 65 characters
  • Think of this as the heading to your “billboard” on the Search Engine Results Page. Try to make the title enticing to the searcher.

META Description:

  • Give each page a unique description
  • Make sure your META description is relevant to the page and is enticing to searchers
  • For maximum compatibility with all search engine make sure your META title is no more than 155 characters
  • Think of this as a short advertisement. Engage the searcher with action words.
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