Meta description and meta title – what are they and how to create them?

Table of content

Meta description and meta title are the two descriptions that search engines show to web users searching for information when they type in a keyword in a web browser. These two previews encourage or discourage web visitors to visit your website and indirectly increase positioning. In this article, we will take a close look at how to create attractive meta description and meta title to achieve the best results for your website.

Meta description – text that attracts

Regardless of whether we are optimizing a subpage, homepage or article – we can modify the meta-description that appears in the search engine. It has one primary purpose, which is to get users to click through to your site.

Meta description

The longer description displayed in the organic results is the meta-description.

A decade has passed since the content of key phrases in the meta-description does not formally affect positioning. However, attractive text improves the click-through rate (CTR), which already significantly translates into more organic traffic.

The length limit for meta description is +/-156 characters.

If we exceed this amount, Google will automatically cut the text by inserting ellipses at the end. Some plugins, such as YoastSEO, automatically impose an upper visibility limit.

What characterizes an effective meta description?

  1. Attractiveness – clearly present to users what they will gain when they visit the website. Depending on the case, answer the question of what they will learn, what they will learn, what they will use, etc.
  2. Directness – the description must address the reader, i.e. create content only using the 2nd person singular! Many people make the mistake of making text too informative. It’s only 156 characters, so you need to get visitors to your site as much as possible. All other valuable content and difficult phrases have their place in the article or subpage.
  3. CTA (Call To Action) – to increase conversion efficiency, call readers to action. Phrases like “come in!”, “find out!”, “check it out!” simply analyzed may sound trivial, but in the right context they really encourage users to click through to your website.

What’s more, some suggest that keywords should be included in the meta description. This is the most correct approach, because such a procedure automatically improves the reliability and clarity of the text. If your phrase is “men’s shoes”, a natural feature of a good description is that it should contain the phrase “men’s shoes”

Meta title – a solid title is essential

While the description attracts the audience, the title clearly informs what the article or subpage is about. The meta-title contains +-75 characters, so we do not have much room for maneuver. It is, however, long enough to fit the text title with a short CTA like “Check it out!”, “Look!” or the general name of the pageMeta title

The meta-title is the title that appears in the search results.

Therefore, we usually have two options to choose from: title + CTA or title + separator + page title. We prefer the first option because the page name is visible in the link.

The meta title usually contains the key phrase, as it is a natural element of the title. Some sources suggest capitalizing each word to get more user attention. This is a rare practice, so it can still be effective to stand out from the competition.

Meta-texts - FAQ

We answer the most common meta-title and meta-description questions.

What are meta texts?

This is the content displayed in the search results. Meta-title is the top title and meta-description is the bottom description.

How long are meta-texts?

The length limit for meta-title is ~75 characters, and for meta-description ~156 characters. The final result depends on the width of the letters used (for example, the letter “R” takes up more space than “I”).

What to do with truncated meta texts?

Google itself assesses whether to use the meta tag or display a fragment of content that will be relevant to the user’s query. For this reason, the meta-title and meta-description will not always be displayed – even when they are perfectly completed. This is a common procedure, so it shouldn’t be a cause for concern. Automated evaluation of algorithms means that we do not have much room for maneuver other than simply supplementing the meta-texts.

Does Meta Content Affect SEO?

Officially, meta texts do not contribute to SEO results. However, do not forget that they are used to encourage readers to visit the site. In turn, a higher click-through rate results in increased organic traffic.

Is it worth supplementing the meta-title and meta-description?

This is not mandatory, because in the case of an empty field, the search engine itself will “borrow” the appropriate fragment of text. However, it is worth doing this to develop the most encouraging texts that will encourage recipients to visit your site.

Summary

  1. Meta description and meta title are the description and title displayed in search engines.
  2. They attract attention, encouraging readers to visit the site.
  3. Although they have not been an important ranking factor for a long time, they improve CTR, which indirectly translates into positioning.
  4. Since meta title and meta description are created exclusively for users, it is important to ensure that they are attractive and inviting.

Lordson Okpetu

I'm many things rolled into one; I'm an ex-journalist, a content strategist, digital marketer and 'rockstar' direct response copywriter. I've written tons of copies to sell thousands of products and services across diverse industries in Nigeria. In my occasional spare time, I play chess or spend time with my family. I am the Chief Operating Officer of Content Writer, Nigeria.

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