9 Top Meta Description Articles Judged by their Meta Descriptions

Everybody in SEO knows what a meta description is.

At least everyone who’s probably reading this site. I mean geez, I hope so.

No influence on rankings, valuable for CTR, 50-155ish characters, keywords get bolded, words get chopped off sometimes by dates or structured data, sometimes the SERP shows a much longer description, sometimes Google ignores it completely.

Boom, every meta description article summarized completely.

But what about these meta description articles’ own meta descriptions? Let’s get meta.

* The following are in rough order of rank for the term “meta description”. Note that when I ask “Does Google like it?” I’m checking to see if Google honors the meta description on a search for “meta description”, or if it displays something else instead. You may debate the merits of this elsewhere.


Moz

https://moz.com/learn/seo/meta-description

The Meta Description: Get SEO best practices for the meta description tag, including length and content.

Character Count: 82

Does Google Like It: Nope.

moz meta description

My Verdict: While it’s not a bad meta description, it’s lacking to me. It seems short. Doesn’t seem too enthused with the whole prospect of someone clicking there. “Eh, you can get this stuff here, I guess.”

3/5 stars.


Yoast

https://yoast.com/meta-descriptions/

The Meta Description: Meta descriptions: ever wondered how to compose the right one? We will explain how to create that inviting meta description. Find out more!

Character Count: 139

Does Google Like It: Nope.

yoast meta description

My Verdict: It’s a better length, but that’s about all it has going for it. You can tell how extremely awkward it was for someone to shoehorn in the “focus keyword” at the beginning of the description. It just doesn’t sound natural.

Then the next sentence sounds like an alien robot is doing the talking. Lastly, the CTA at the end is generic. It’s not “Find out how to create the most inviting meta descriptions here!”, it’s just “Find out more!”

2/5 stars.


HubSpot

http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/how-to-write-meta-description-ht

The Meta Description: Learn how to write meta descriptions that engage searchers and improve clickthrough rates.

Character Count: 90

Does Google Like It: Yes!

hubspot meta description

My Verdict: This is the best one so far. It’s active, straight to the point, and gets things done. It’s not blowing my socks off, and it seems a little short just for my personal taste, but it’s not bad… not bad at all.

4/5 stars.


Kissmetrics

https://blog.kissmetrics.com/meta-description-magic/

The Meta Description: In this post, we will look at how search engines use meta descriptions, what the top SEO blogs say about meta descriptions. Click here to learn about meta description magic!

Character Count: 173

Does Google Like It: Nope.

kissmetrics meta description

My Verdict: At first I thought Kissmetrics lucked out, because this SERP seems to be one that allows for more than 156 characters in certain instances – what’s showing under Moz and Yoast above are both greater than the usual limit.

Unfortunately… no. Somebody wrote that meta description a dozen or so characters too long. Uh-oh, Kissmetrics, that’s not a good sign.

0/5 stars.


WordStream

http://www.wordstream.com/meta-description

The Meta Description: Meta descriptions can have a surprisingly large impact on your search marketing campaigns; find out how…

Character Count: 106

Does Google Like It: Nope.

wordstream meta description

My Verdict: Holy crap, this is a bad one. It’s not technically incorrect, so it avoids getting 0 stars. But it ends with an ellipsis! Folks, that’s the whole point of staying under the character count – so they don’t look cut off. Here, it’s like they’re cutting themselves off.

congratulations you played yourself

1/5 star.


Search Engine Land

http://searchengineland.com/write-meta-description-gets-clickthroughs-207922

The Meta Description: I feel sorry for meta descriptions. Google has long held that meta descriptions do not impact search engine rankings. From a 2007 post on the Google Webmas

Character Count: 155

Does Google Like It: It liked it enough to display it, but it still cut it off.

search engine land meta description

My Verdict: Look here, SEL, I get what you’re doing. You’re just taking the first 155 characters of the article and pulling them automatically for the description. It’s ironic that an article lamenting about how meta descriptions are forgotten gets a crappy automated one.

I guess it’s karma that Google tacks on a date at the front and so ends up cutting it off anyway. Come on, folks – this one’s just sad.

1/5 stars.


W3Schools

http://www.w3schools.com/tags/tag_meta.asp

The Meta Tag: Well organized and easy to understand Web bulding tutorials with lots of examples of how to use HTML, CSS, JavaScript, SQL, PHP, and XML.

Character Count: 137

Does Google Like It: Of course not.

w3schools meta description

My Verdict: Look, I’m a big fan of W3Schools. But c’mon, we can’t use a blanket description across the whole site. We just can’t do that kind of thing anymore.

Especially not when there’s a typo.

understand Web bulding“.

1/5 stars.


High Rankings

http://www.highrankings.com/metadescription

The Meta Description: → In this article, Jill Whalen explains the benefits of the Meta Description tag, as well as how and when it is used in search engines and social media.

Character Count: 153

Does Google Like It: No.

high rankings meta description

My Verdict: I love it. This is the best so far! An arrow, an author, everything. That being said, I’ve heard starting a meta description with a symbol guarantees Google won’t display it. I don’t have any evidence one way or the other, but if you try this, make sure to test it yourself.

Just a shame Google doesn’t go with it. It’s too bad, really, as Jill Whalen is great too.

5/5 stars.


Weidert Group

https://www.weidert.com/whole_brain_marketing_blog/bid/114450/SEO-6-Ways-to-Craft-Better-Meta-Descriptions-That-Rock-The-SERPs

The Meta Description: Increase your website’s SERP click-through rate with these 6 tips for writing better meta descriptions, a key to search engine optimization.

Character Count: 140

Does Google Like It: Yes!

weidert group meta description

My Verdict: With a title like that, I was expecting to be let down. But as I read it, I realized it was legitimately pretty great.

Really great, in fact. It even accounted for the possibility of a date being added, and can take those extra characters with ease.

I’ve never heard of the Weidert Group before, but if they do everything as well as they do their meta description meta descriptions, you can count me as a fan.

5/5 stars.


Final Results

Let’s review.

The worst of the worst: Kissmetrics, at 17 characters over the limit.

Then we’ve got W3Schools with a blanket meta description across the whole site.

Just barely better is the automatically generated cut-off description that Search Engine Land creates.

Next up, well, at least WordStream tried, even though they really missed the point.

Yoast sits right in the middle of the bunch with a pretty clumsy offering.

Coming in at very average is none other than Moz itself.

Getting into the better offerings here, Hubspot manages to make a solid description.

The appropriately named High Rankings has the second best meta description here.

And the very best is that last one, the Weidert Group. I’m impressed – I didn’t expect the winner to be something I’d never even heard of before!

Do you disagree with my rankings? Have you seen other terrible meta description article meta descriptions in the wild? (I certainly have.) Let me know if you have and share this article if you enjoyed it. Thanks for reading Corporate Charm!




Enjoy this post?
Put your email below to hear about the next one!






  • Frank Isca

    Ethan: we’re honored that Weidert Group made the list and that we scored so high! I still remember writing this article and carefully crafting the meta description. I really enjoyed your write up here and the examples you chose. I’m glad you discovered our blog and that we gained a new fan. If you’d ever like to be a guest writer please let us know!

  • Hey Frank, I’m glad you enjoyed this! It was pretty fun to write. And about that last part – I’d love to. How should I get in touch with you?

  • Frank Isca

    I bet it was fun to write! To start the process with being a guest writer, please complete this form and I’ll alert our marketing manager Jamie to watch for it: https://content.weidert.com/guest-blogging-criteria

    He can then work with you on next steps!