Party season is a somewhat distant memory right now, however, it did provide me with a great insight into the ways in which brands can utilise their meta descriptions to influence potential customers, like myself.
While it is said that meta descriptions are not considered a ranking factor, they shouldn’t be disregarded altogether. Instead, consider your meta descriptions as a click through and conversion factor, if they are well thought out and well written, your pages stand more chance of capturing the right attention and hopefully generating more clicks.
After receiving a New Year’s Eve party invite, I
wanted needed to get a new party dress, so took to Google for some help. Here are a few things that caught my eye about certain meta descriptions and what about them made me want to (or not want to) click through.
Give users a prompt (and a reason) to visit your website with a call-to-action. This can be implemented within the meta description to give potential customers a little push (or pull) in the right direction i.e toward your website and your products or services.
Keep the call-to-action simple and direct, not only will this ensure your description remains well within the 150-160 character limit, but it makes your website feel more inviting to potential customers which should hopefully entice them to click through.
New Look have used a strong call-to-action here, and it makes me feel welcome but without some kind of prompt, I feel less inclined to click…
Your Unique Selling Proposition (USP) is what makes your brand different (and far superior) to any others out there, so use it to your advantage when writing meta descriptions for your website.
Even if your product or service isn’t an entirely unique offering, you can still play up to, and promote any of your brand’s attractive benefits in the meta description for relevant pages.
If your page ranks well for a vague, generic keywords like ‘party dress’ then that’s great, but if you can grab the attention of your target audience by meeting their more specific needs, then that’s even better.
In this example, I’m not really after any old ‘party dress’ I’m inadvertently hoping to find a product which will…
a) fit me
b) be within my budget
oh AND c) – bonus point – be on offer!
Using numbers in the meta description (where appropriate) can help accomplish more specific goals – they stand out against the text rich SERP and provide accessible and informative details to users.
Ali wrote a great post about the role of spelling and grammar in building brand reputation and this applies to your meta content too!
Just like a well-written meta description can entice potential customers, a poorly written one can put them off, so be sure to proofread as you go. Needless to say, Littlewoods didn’t entice me this time.
The examples cited above are solely based around my experience with one particular, and rather vague search term. If you’re hoping to entice more users to your own website, then refreshing your meta descriptions is not going to be the be all and end all.
However, it is definitely worth looking into what you and your competitors are currently doing to entice customers and reviewing your meta content plan accordingly.