There is a lot of miss information and out dated information online. Meta tags (meta keyword, meta description) are no longer looked at by search engines whatsoever in terms of where your website gets ranked. Yes, what much of the web using public still considers to be the backbone of achieving high results in search engines, are basically useless.
It’s not surprising that many people still feel that the META description and META keyword tags are relevant. For several years these were drilled into our minds as the most important thing we could do to make our website a success. At one point in time it was almost as easy as slapping in a few keywords into the code, and watch your website shoot to the top of the search results on Google, Yahoo!, Web crawler, Hot Bot (remember Hot Bot?!) and other currently dead search engines. Old habits die hard.
The reality is however, that as technology advanced, and the amount of websites on the net grew at an incredible rate, search engines were forced to update their algorithms that dictate which websites are ranked where. In actuality, META tags have not been relevant in terms of search engine ranking in roughly 5 years.
Confession time, I lied. While the Meta keyword tag is officially 100% obsolete, the Meta description tag still serves a purpose. Although it has no use in terms of where your website ranks, what you write in your Meta description tag will be what shows up in your websites description under your URL. View below for an example of one of our long time SEO clients, Ridgeway By The Lake – www.ridgewaybythelake.com.
Them showing up on the first spot of google when you search “new homes in Ridgeway” has nothing to do with the Meta description tag. However, the text that I’ve highlighted above can be produced via the Meta description tag. This allows you to customize a block of text in an effort to help entice people to click your link over someone elses that are ranked near by. If you choose not to add a custom Meta description, it certainly won’t hurt anything. Google will simply take a relevant snippet from your website to display in this spot for you.
So there it is, hopefully this information will help combat the still abundance of miss information out there in terms of Meta tag usage.
I no longer dedicate any time handling these for my websites or my clients websites. Our time is better served elsewhere!