An explanation of the meta description tag

The description tag should be used to provide a short and concise summary of a page's contents.

As with the title tag, it is intended to be read by humans and not search engines.

It should therefore be presented in a readable format for humans.

Search engines often use the meta description tag in the search engine results. For example, below is a screenshot from the jdsports.co.uk source coding. (The computer code that makes the website).

below is a screenshot from Google when using the keyword 'jdsports'.

Notice that the text snippet in the search engine results, and the meta description tag is exactly the same.


Importance of the description tag

As with the title tag, the main importance of the description tag is its presence in search results.

You should write a description that entices the user to click on your entry in results.


Tips for a good description tag

• Write for a human, not a search engine - this is very important
• Make it unique to the page
• Make it accurate to the page content

Google's advice

The full article can be found at https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/35624?hl=en, but here's the highlights

• Make sure every page has one
• Differentiate the descriptions for different pages
• Use quality descriptions and don't keyword stuff


Important information

When you save a new description tag for a website page, search engines like Google will not update your site's listing immediately. You will need to wait until the site is next crawled by the search engine for your listing to update. This can take between 2 days and 2 weeks.