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Meta description refers to the HTML attributes that give a brief but clear explanation of a web page’s contents. Users see this explanation beneath title that is listed in the results of a search engine query.

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A meta description helps the searcher decide whether or not to click on the link to a web page or an article. It helps convince readers to choose the site they will visit.

Here are some of the benefits of paying attention to your meta descriptions:

  • Increase click through rates and improve visits from organic search – The more relevant listings are usually found at the top of the search results, leading to a lower percentage of clicks as you go down the page. This means that if your result is located at the bottom of the page or on a subsequent page, it is less likely that people will go to your website. But you can turn the tide in your favor if you have an eye-catching and relevant meta description.
  • Increase visits from social sharing sites – When you share a page on any social sharing site, many social networks will display the meta description text as the text in the shared window. When you do not include a meta description tag, the a social site may instead use the first text they can find, which may not be relevant to the page and may not encourage clicks.

Meta descriptions are recommended to be a short sentence that gives a preview of the full content from the page that it references. It should tell the searchers why it is important to click through. A well-written meta description could inspire the searcher to click through and read your content, which might increase conversions. And keep in mind, when crafting your meta description, be mindful of its length. Google will cut your description if it is too long.