“Content is KING.”
You’ve probably heard this so many times while working on your website optimization strategies. This means that every part of your website matters. This includes the articles or blog posts, images, and even the titles and descriptions on every page. And why should you put a lot of effort into your content? This is because you should always write for the users first.
Writing content for the benefit of your target audience includes creating compelling meta titles and descriptions for every page on your site. Read on to find out why this is so.
What is a meta title?
When you open a website, you’ll see a few words written on the page tab in your browser. These words are collectively called the “meta title.” They provide users a quick overview of that particular page is all about.
Why is a meta title relevant? When a user bookmarks the page, the meta title will become the “filename” of the page on their bookmarks list. This makes it easy for the user to retrieve the page for future use.
A meta title is an essential component of search engine optimization because it is used to index a page. Hence, it is crucial that you use keywords when creating meta titles.
What is a meta description?
To provide users with a more accurate summary of what a particular page is all about, you need to provide a meta description.
When a user searches for information on Google, he will be given a list of sites with relevant content. The first thing the user will see is the meta title, giving him an idea which link he should click on. But with a concise description of what the page is all about will make the user more inclined to click on the link to your site.
Again, meta descriptions must have relevant words to help a page rank higher in Google search engine results pages (SERPs). This information should not exceed 155 characters.
Should every meta title and description be unique? Why?
Yes, every meta title and description must be unique. Keep in mind that duplicate content is a heinous crime in the SEO world. Google does penalize websites that will try and get away with copied or similar content, even if it’s just the meta title and description.
How do creative meta title and description help with your website ranking?
In September 2009, search engine giant Google announced that meta tags are not factored into their algorithms for search engine optimization. However, meta titles and descriptions do have an impact on a web page’s click-through-rate (CTR) on SERPs. This results in a positive impact on a page’s ability to improve its ranking.
With that in mind, it’s important for website owners to put some extra effort into creating relevant and useful meta tags.
What are the tools that help you create the best meta tags?
- Screaming Frog
The Screaming Frog SEO spider calculates the pixel width of every meta title and description. It also has a SERP snippet emulator to help website developers create better descriptions in terms of pixel width to avoid being truncated by Google.
Yoast has a snippet editor that lets website owners optimize web page titles and descriptions. Aside from that, they have a plugin that lets you set templates for any kind of page. You can create templates for your site, so you won’t have to make everything from scratch every time you add a title or description.
- All in One SEO
This is another useful tool that lets you set a title and description for every page on your site. The All in One SEO Pack will automatically add a Site Title after you supply an SEO title, which should not exceed 60 characters.
For the description, the pack allows you to use the Autogenerate Descriptions settings to use an excerpt of the content as the meta description. However, if no post excerpt is supplied, it will use the first 320 characters of your content instead.