How to Optimise your Metadata for Success on Google
One of the most frequently asked questions Verb receives is ‘how do you optimise your metadata for success on Google?’. Our own SEO experts have since provided some useful tips that we are delighted to share with you with the intention of helping you to improve your own success online.
Despite misconceptions, it is in fact possible to optimise your metadata to help your website to rank well for relevant searches. We are strongly of the opinion that doing this should be considered a routine part of your on-page SEO. Done well, it will ultimately result in more customers clicking on your website which increases the chances of conversion.
Starting from the very beginning – metadata is the information that your website provides to search engines to fill out the SERPs with relevant pieces of information for searchers to see and let Google (predominantly) know what your pages and website are about. There are three main types of metadata including meta tags / titles, meta description and meta keywords. These can often get confused. Our team have provided us with some clear descriptions pinpointing exactly what the differences are between each.
A.Meta tags / titles
Meta titles are shown to searchers and to search engine indexers. They reflect the subject of your page and can be used to carefully pick out keywords in order to target the right people for your site. Our top tip is to never pack your meta tags – or any metadata – full of just keywords and nothing else; they should always be coherent and present an appealing title to draw customers in.
B. Meta description
Your web page’s meta description is shown under the title in the search engine results. We advise our clients that it should provide just enough information to draw your customers, kept short and to the point. The meta description should help visitors to understand what your web page has to offer and be appropriate to its niche. When done well, it will help to ensure that the people who click through to your website are targeted luxury consumers. You can indeed optimise with relevant keywords it should remain appealing rather than just a list of jumbled words.
Meta keywords tell the search engine about the keywords for which a website is optimised. The meta keywords are not visible to visitors unlike meta titles and meta descriptions. Interestingly, they are thought to be less relevant in SEO than they used to be. Meta keywords should be consistent with the keywords for which a website is optimised, but they can be considered less of a priority for many.
Although we believe that is important to consider all three types of Meta on your site, we have focused on the most important advice we give to all our clients when approached – tips for optimising metadata through the meta description.
A web page’s meta description is very important for optimising its metadata. A few characteristics of good meta description include:
1.Length of meta description:
We recommend restricting the size of a meta description to between 50 and 300 characters. If it is longer that this then Google will actually cut them off in the SERPs.
2. Add a call-to-action
A good meta description could include a call to action such as “buy now”, “contact us”, “find out more”, this type of description can prompt a visitor to click on the link to your web page.
3.Your meta description should contain your keywords
Meta descriptions should also include focus keywords that make relevant, targeted visitors more interested in your webpage. The keywords should match with the content of page, as well as your website in general, and should be optimised to appeal to your target audience.
4.Your meta description should be unique
Your meta description should be unique so that every page of your website is appropriately optimised. When a customer clicks on your page in Google search result, they are directed to the page they were expecting.
5.Compare your meta description with SERP snippets
The meta description is controlled by you and you can add or remove anything from it using WordPress plugins or simple HTML. And while Google often uses your meta description in its SERPs, there is no guarantee of this so use Chrome plugins or your own searches to verify whether your meta descriptions are in use.