Meta descriptions are usually something that online shopkeepers have to struggle with to ensure that their SEO is well defined for Google Search. Meta descriptions are a core component of your structured data for Google Bot crawlers to capture your products, pages, and blog posts and categorize them into keyword groups. Your Home page which covers your key brand and store tenets carries a big weight to your SEO, and while other areas are also important for SEO such as the user experience, page speed, and various optimizations, for your organic traffic, this is an important area to focus on.
What is a Meta Description
This is an HTML Tag that summarizes your page contents that is usually 160 characters long and will appear under your page title in search engine results pages. When the Meta Description is shown, it will also identify the keywords being searched (and the ones missing from your request), which makes an important match for your online store and users to connect with. Meta Descriptions are not an SEO ranking factor, unlike the page Title that is. It is part of On-page SEO and also drives customers to select your entry on the search results to visit your site.
Meta Descriptions are meant to set expectations for the user, so when they arrive on your page they see what the meta description described to expect.
Google re-writes Meta Descriptions
You can expect that 63% or more of search results are rewritten by Google. It so happens that for Mobile, 71% on average is affected, and 68% for desktop. This has to do with keywords, and the re-rewrite tries to correlate the search intent to the results. The more high-traffic keywords are being used in your online store, the less likely Google will re-write the meta description. A poorly written and low-correlated meta description will then trigger google to re-write your meta description on what it understands the page to be. If you want to get better promotional efficiency with market voice, focus on your best sellers since they are the bigger traffic attraction so that their keywords do not deviate from your intended traffic reach.
Product Page Meta Description
The value proposition should explain the benefits for the buyer, or provide technical specs or part numbers if it is in demand or searched for specifically. The user experience (UX) will match up to the traffic sources when searched for and will be highlighted and better ranked since the keywords will probably be a direct match to the search words or numbers used. Long-tailed keywords should be used in Product pages so as to be more specific as opposed to Category Page Meta Descriptions to be more mid-tailed keywords and plural given it represents a collection or category. Additionally, explain what brands you carry if you are a reseller at the category level.
How to write a good Meta Description
Consider the mindset and language of the customer in the following:
Title tag: What are you offering + why should they buy from you?
Meta Description: At the product level it is specific, but at the Home page level the focus is on your brand, your differentiation (making it unique), and value proposition. Even your mission statement should be highlighted. On your pages, your Meta Description is both sales and keyword orientated but generic to your product set and brand tenets.
Meta Description Length: It must be an optimal length, containing the keywords you are focused on. Anything over 155 characters, will truncate your content - your important keywords must be placed at the beginning.
Actionable: They must be clear, concise, and actionable to set expectations upon arrival on the page.
Add a call-to-action: "Best Product, best quality", "shop now", "discover new trends", and "browse the collection" are eye-catchers for the potential customers to take note of and click through.
Use your core keywords: Focusing your keywords on your Meta is key, it has to be legible (not cryptic) for humans to engage with the short content.
Avoid Meta Description generators: Meta Name Description Content will lose the human reading value as well as it will most likely lose the keywords that you intend to optimize with. This erodes the user experience as it will not communicate well with the audience. For large stores with thousands of SKUs, this might still require some automation, but the core products should still be manually reviewed and adjusted.
Make your Meta Descriptions unique: A compelling Meta Description will attract a better click-through rate (CTR) on Search Engine Results Pages (SERP), so being distinct with the above considerations will make your page stand out.
While it may be obvious to do a better job manually on your Meta Descriptions, it can be viewed as tedious. However, if you focus on your core products first, your Home page, and other main branded pages it will be a good start. As you get through your site with your Meta Descriptions, ensuring you have good titles for your pages, your online store will start to shine through the search results as your keywords will resonate with the search volume, and traffic will start to come through. If you need assistance or would like to discuss an approach on your Meta Descriptions for your online store - feel free to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org