Written by John Ocampos – Published by ZAAAX Design
What are the driving factors that make a person browsing the web click through a site? Ignite Visibility surveys show that content is still king, as meta descriptions (62.9%), followed by brand name (24.2%) and page title (13%), are the three most significant factors for click through on a search result.
Click-Through Rate (CTR) is the ratio of visitors that click on your site from those that view your search result. It’s the same principles as a conversion rate, but with a different, more specific name.
Meta descriptions are an element in the HTML code of a web page that gives a brief description or snippet of the content of that page. Search engines like Google use it to display a web page in search results:
The meta tag is as follows:
The element “name” is that signal search engines pick up which element of the HTML code is specified (meta description). The attribute “content” is code for the description of the content of this element, which are the exact wordings of the meta-description.
Meta descriptions are important because they provide a sneak peek into what your page is about, building expectations with the visitor, and encouraging click through. Optimising your meta description helps you rank higher in search results and advertise your website if you write your meta description purposefully.
According to the survey by Ignite Visibility, brand awareness was the second strongest influence on click-through. It goes to show how important it is to establish your brand and continue strengthening brand awareness through your SEO strategies.
Creating engaging titles is also crucial to hooking readers into clicking your site. Include your primary keyword even in your title, and make sure your title is clearly answering a search intent you are targeting with your article.
For instance, this article’s title answers the following search intent: Do meta description and branding increase search click-through? The title also gives a preview immediately that you’ll get seven reasons why they do.
7 Reasons Why Meta Tags and Branding Boost Click-Through Rates:
1 – Well-written meta descriptions boost click-through rates and increase brand awareness.
Meta descriptions organically get more clicks when optimised for audiences. The more clicks you get, the stronger your brand becomes. Make sure that you can insert the main keywords for the search intent you’re targeting. Users do not want to pour through all the results on the SERP. They usually look at three sites, and if your meta description has their search intent, they’ll naturally choose your site as one of their choices for further research.
2 – Higher CTR improves SERP ranking and brand visibility.
An SEO meta description does not directly determine rankings on Search Engine Results Page (SERP). Still, when it is well-written, meta tags have more chances of being clicked through, the increase in the CTR will also increase a page’s rankings and domain authority for your brand.
3 – Well-defined meta descriptions are more strategic and look better on SERP.
Search engines will auto-generate meta descriptions if you do not define it for them, and the results may not be as optimal for your site. It may be a jumble of words and details harvested by the search engine that does not make a strong statement about your page content. Remember that your meta description is supposed to give a preview of your page and promote your brand well. Pre-determining what your meta description will allow you to ensure the best, most relevant description appears.
Here is an example of an auto-generated meta description:
It’s like a waste of space if you have descriptions here that do not hit the mark. So, make it a habit to optimise your meta descriptions all the time
4 – A meta description is like a free advertising space for your brand.
Your meta description is like a free billboard spot on SERP for your brand that you need to optimise as much as you can. When SEO meta tags appear on SERPs and various social media feeds, it gives you a chance to promote your brand and your website. Here is an example of an optimised meta description:
5 – Meta descriptions can be integrated into your SEO strategies.
Meta descriptions can be a integrated into a larger rich snippet plan, as search engine results can display more than the title, slug, and description. There are other tags or schema, like rich snippets, that can make your tags more fruitful. Rich snippets can include links, icons, images, reviews, ratings, and the like:
6 – Other Web Platforms Use Meta Descriptions
Meta descriptions are also used by other search engines and social media platforms. For some search engines, they even use meta descriptions to determine page results. Meta descriptions are also important for Facebook and Twitter that extract data from the HTML in order to display titles, images, and descriptions whenever you share a link on these platforms.
Popular platforms have their tags. Facebook uses Open Graph tags, while Twitter uses Twitter Cards to display information correctly. On the other hand, other web platforms, apps, and browsers rely on standard meta tags.
Use custom tags strategically that enable you to use different titles, images, and descriptions across different platforms. You may need to adjust images, though, based on the platform you are using. Facebook and Twitter, for instance, use different size requirements for their images.
7 – Searchers feel that the search results match accurately to their search intent just by looking at the meta tags.
Meta tags help in assuring audiences that search engines are hitting the mark when it comes to their search intent. The sneak peeks that meta tags give can guide viewers into selecting the right websites that would answer their search intent.
How to Write Meta Tags:
- Use your main keyword sparingly. Avoid keyword stuffing.
- Position your keywords near the front of the title.
- Write for readers, not search engines.
- Indicate Show benefits and value.
- Include your brand name when relevant.
- Write 50 to 60 characters.
- Write unique page titles for each page.
Conclusion: Meta Tags Help Boost Your Page Rankings
Again, content is still king, and as people continue to have advertisement-fatigue, optimising meta tags for discreet and tactful promotion of your website is still critical for SEO success. When you take advantage of meta tags, along with brand awareness and titles, and use them all wisely, you increase your click-throughs and improve your site’s performance by a great deal.
Also, make sure that when people do click through your website, they find a quality website waiting for them, with great UX/UI design, engaging and high-quality content, and secured from current cybersecurity threats. Make Meta Tags a standard part of your SEO strategies today.
John Ocampos is an Opera Singer by profession and a member of the Philippine Tenors. Ever since, Digital Marketing has always been his forte. He is the Founder of SEO-Guru, and the Managing Director of Tech Hacker. John is also the Strategic SEO and Influencer Marketing Manager of Softvire Australia – the leading software eCommerce company in Australia and Softvire New Zealand.