Writing the perfect meta description in WordPress

Writing the perfect meta description in WordPress

Today, we’re talking about meta description, why it is crucial for your website and how to write the proper one.

How can something so little be of so much importance? Glad you’ve asked because we prepared the detailed guide on how to create the best meta description for your website and your articles.

What is meta description?

For those of you who don’t know, or maybe forgot, the meta description is a brief description of the site or article. It tells Google and potential visitors what to expect when clicking on your link. Think of it as an ad for your article/blog/website. The more accurate and catchy it is, the more chances you have to get the visitor to your site.

The ideal length of the meta description should be 160 characters – that is what Google recognizes and puts under your title. Anything more than that will not be shown so be aware of that.

Why use meta description?

Only because it’s the go-to way to get visitors to your site. If written good, meta description will generate clickthroughs from search engines like Google. It’s like a hook and a promise of an answer and the solution people are searching online.

Let’s say you’re searching for some WordPress tutorials. What do you do? Aside from the title results, you might look and read the description beneath it, right? Looking for the most interesting one and click on it, am I right again?

As for how does it look like on search engines, here’s an example:

meta description in WordPress search engine example

Also, Social Media uses meta description when you share your links on their platforms:

meta description in WordPress Social Media example

If done properly, meta description will set you apart from the competition. It is a golden opportunity to do good and improve your SEO efforts – for free! Having a meta description on your every article will increase visibility chances as well as clickthrough rates.

How to write and improve meta description?

Now that we know how important it is to have the meta description, here’s how to improve its writing and SEO efforts. These are the things you need to consider and do the right way, to fully benefit from it.

1. Meta description length

As we said, Google won’t show more than 160 characters of the meta description. Make sure to have your caption within that range. If not, the message you want to communicate might not be appropriately understood. Or you risk being perceived as unprofessional and a slob. Here’s an example:

meta description in WordPress bad example

2. Do not over promise

What’s written in the meta description should match the article content itself. Don’t use bombastic and clickbait phrases to catch the visitor, just to be disappointed when they click on the link. Find a way to write both interesting, catchy and truthful caption that will deliver the exact value to the visitor.

3. Use the keyword

Having an excellently written meta description in WordPress or any other CMS means you have the right keyword in it, too. This is one of the fundamental SEO rules – adding a specific, targeted keyword within meta description in a meaningful way. It’s the little things that matter.

Let’s say you have an article about embedding YouTube video in WordPress – wait! We do! And you want to bid on the keywords like „embed YouTube video WordPress.“ When writing the meta description, you would include these keywords and write something like this:

meta description in WordPress keywords example

Short enough, specific and in line with the article topic, right?

4. Include CTA

Call to action are an important and powerful way to drive visits to your website. People like and want to know what to do – show them! If you want them to do something – tell them right away, within that meta description.

5. It’s not about you

Equally crucial like all the previous tips. Don’t use meta description to self-promote; it’s not about you. Put yourself in the visitor’s shoes and think what it is they want from you? They want the solution, the answer to their search, their problem. Use meta description to deliver just that, and you’ll see your efforts pay out quickly.

Meta description in WordPress

Now, using WordPress as your go-to publishing platform has numerous benefits. One of those is that WordPress is SEO friendly and has tons of useful plugins, even for meta description! Personally and here in Meks, we use SEO by Yoast plugin that helps us in writing the meta description in WordPress.

The process itself is straightforward: after you install the plugin from the plugin section of the site, you’re ready to go! SEO by Yoast is under the text editor, and all you need to do is this:

  • Click on the Edit snippet button to enter the meta description section
  • Paste the desired meta description in the box

meta description in WordPress SEO Yoast example

As simple as that!

Now, you have every information you need for writing good meta description in WordPress and any other CMS. Let us know if these tips helped you out and if you know of any new tips.

Ivana Cirkovic

Ivana is a Digital Marketing, PR and Social Media consultant with over nine years experience in the field. She is also a WordPress enthusiast and an active member of WordPress community who lives online almost 24/7. In love with Twitter, WP, photography and NYC.

4 comments

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *