Per a tweet from Google’s Martin Splitt, the Meta description helps Google to understand the important things about the page or a summary of what’s there on the page. This looks like an extension of the previous knowledge of SEO & meta description.
Role of Meta Description in SEO.
There is a tradeoff going on with the knowledge of Meta description HTML elements not being a ranking factor, but causing a negative impact on the ranking.
Meta description tags are in general considered as having only a limited scope when it comes to affecting the SEO of a site or a page. The duplicate meta description elements have, in the past, been thought to be causing a negative effect on ranking. Put it, in other words, various elements of meta description can have an effect on the SEO ranking.
Given this knowledge, Google, in the past has also clarified the fact that meta descriptions are not a ranking factor.
If you want to know more about meta descriptions we have got you covered.
So, there is a contradiction between two of these statements. How something can be true and at the same time it’s opposite can also be true. How meta description elements can negatively affect Google ranking at the same time has nothing to do with the ranking factors?
In his tweet, recently, Martin Splitt offered an interesting explanation of how meta descriptions help Google. He says meta description, as well as the meta title together, provides the best summary of the page.
Martin tweet read “Well, they and the title are making up the first impression of what someone searching sees from your site and helps Google Search to get a short summary of what you consider important about the page.”
Let us understand what it means when he says:
This means that meta descriptions elements are used by Google to understand the summary of the page and to understand the purpose of the page.
John Mueller, Google’s Webmaster Trends Analyst contributing to the discussion says meta descriptions are not ranking factors. His thought on this is in alignment with the views of the search marketing on meta description. Mueller did not say anything about the meat description being the high-level summary of the page.
The meta title element has been considered as a ranking factor in the past. Whether that’s true today or not is another discussion. The meta title element also provides an explanation of what the page is all about.
Martin Splitt with his wants to say that same as the meta title element, the meta description element also plays a similar role. His stance is different from what the search marketing community has understood about meta description.
Does Meta Descriptions Explain Content?
Does meta description help Google understand what the content of the page is all about, same as the meta title elements?
Answering this important question, Martin says, “what you care about in terms of content…”
However, John Mueller didn’t seem to be disagreeing completely on this.
So far Splitt tries to explain that meta description is the top-level explanation of what the page is all about or summary of the page and it can affect Google ranking considers like the meta tag elements. However, John Mueller, Google’s Webmaster Trends Analyst says meta description elements are not ranking factors. Looks like the discussion still does not give a clear picture. To read more on Google’s latest update on New Features to Enrich Shopping during COVID follow AdMedia Blog.