A Beginner's Guide to Meta Tags
Nathan Giblett

It doesn’t take long to learn that content is king when it comes to SEO strategies. Having engaging, reader-friendly content on your website and keeping it updated is one of the best ways to achieve a high ranking from Google and other search engines.

But it doesn’t stop there. Meta tags are another way to optimise your content even further and showcase its potential. You can think of them as concise, relevant descriptions that will convince searchers that your web page is worth clicking on. Meta tags also provide additional data about your content to search engines, allowing them to rank your website more effectively and help searchers find the information they’re looking for.

Today we’re going to review some basic information about meta tags and how you can add them to your content to improve your SEO rankings. 

Title Tags

A title tag is a clickable HTML tag that displays the title of your web page in search engine results. Title tags may be the most important part of your metadata because they speak to both Google and your readers. A well-crafted title tag can be the biggest indicator of whether or not someone will click on your site, and it can also directly impact how well your site ranks in the search engine results page (SERP). Title tags are your first chance to grab your reader’s attention and convince them that your website is relevant to their search. Here are some things to keep in mind when you’re creating your title:

  • Use a distinctive title tag for each page on your website.
  • Use title case.-
  • Consider including a target keyword that will match search intent.

Here are some things to avoid when you’re creating your title tag:

  • Long headlines – Keep it under 60 characters
  • Vague or generic titles – Try to make it as unique as possible to grab attention
  • Clickbait – Don’t claim to offer something you’re not going to fulfil
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Meta Description

Your meta description summarises the content on your webpage and appears below the title tag in search engine results. Meta descriptions communicate with both engine crawlers and internet users.

Note: Meta descriptions are not part of Google’s ranking algorithm, but they do help searchers find what they’re looking for, and they could increase your click-through rates. With that in mind, you’ll want to be creative with your meta descriptions and consider these things:

  • Keep it under 160 characters
  • Avoid duplicating your descriptions
  • Use sentence case
  • Include keywords if they make sense
  • Keep it concise and accurate, but be descriptive
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Viewport Meta Tags

Viewport refers to the area of the webpage that the user sees. This changes depending on whether your searcher is looking at a laptop or mobile phone. Since nearly half of searches happen on a mobile device, viewport meta tags are crucial because they address your content’s size and scale so the browser can adjust accordingly. Most content management systems will automatically use scalable viewport tags that make sure your website displays correctly but make sure you double-check, Website visitors may not stick around if your site is difficult to read, navigate or slow to upload. Viewport meta tags will help your website become more user-friendly. 

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Do You Have Questions About Meta Tags?

If you’re unsure how, when, or where to use meta tags, an SEO specialist can point you in the right direction or even do the heavy lifting of adding them to your site for you.  

Nathan Giblett
Nathan grew up in Boulder, Colorado and attended Fort Lewis College where he majored in marketing. When he is not working, Nathan can be found skateboarding, snowboarding, and playing Settlers of Catan with his friends.

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