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11 Mistakes To Avoid While Writing Meta Description

Avoid common meta description mistakes. Steer clear of keyword stuffing, writing vague or misleading content, and exceeding the recommended length (150-160 characters).

Home / Blogs / 11 Mistakes To Avoid While Writing Meta Description
Raghav Tayal

Head Of Operations - Digital Web Solutions

February 22, 2024

The meta description is an HTML tag that briefly summarizes the content of your webpage. The primary aim of a meta description is to convince users to click on a URL.

Since it is one of the first points of interaction your target audience has with your webpage, crafting the right meta description is crucial in improving your click-through rate (CTR) and website traffic. A rule of thumb for writing an impactful meta description is it must be concise, clear, and engaging.

A well-crafted meta description is an effective tool that impacts your website’s search engine ranking and traffic. However, most website owners make the following mistakes while crafting a meta description:

Mistake 1: Meta Descriptions Which Are Too Long

Ideally, your meta description should be a maximum of 160 characters for the desktop version of your website and 120 characters for the mobile version of your website. If the characters of your meta description exceed this limit, Google search results usually snip it short. Therefore, if you want to display your version of the meta description, ensure it is within the ideal character range.

Mistake 2: Meta Descriptions Which Are Too Short

While you have to ensure that your meta description is not too long, having a short meta description is also not favorable for your webpage. A short meta description lacks substance and accurate information, which may discourage your target audience from clicking on your URL. There is also a chance that search engines will rank your webpage very low if you have a short meta description. Moreover, there is also a fair chance that Google will replace your meta description with its own content.

Mistake 3: Meta Description Is Inconsistent with Page Content

We all know that meta description briefly summarizes what a web page is about. However, if you make the mistake of writing a meta description that is inconsistent with the content on your page, chances are that your webpage will not be indexed or ranked by search engines.

Your meta description should precisely describe what is on the webpage. Hence, having a consistent meta description is very crucial to improving ranking and building authority.

Mistake 4: Meta Descriptions Having No Relevant Keywords

Think of the meta description as an extended version of your title tag. If you could write a long title for your website’s content, which keywords would you add? Titles are more restrictive than meta descriptions, where you have to fit the entire summary on your webpage in a few words. Meanwhile, in a meta description, you have the liberty of 160 characters. Therefore, choose the keywords wisely. Select those keywords that are truly in line with the content and add value to your webpage.

Mistake 5: Description Duplication

We all know that search engines do not appreciate plagiarism or duplicate content. The same goes for your meta description as well. Each page in your website must have an appropriate and suitable meta description; otherwise, the search engine crawlers will simply ignore your meta description along with the content on your page. This may lead to your website not getting indexed at all.

Mistake 6: Overstuffing Meta Descriptions With Keywords

Just because optimizing your meta description with keywords is a wise decision, you shouldn’t over-optimize it too. Overstuffing keywords in your meta description is a big no if you want to build authority and improve your search engine rankings. Having the primary keyword added to your meta description is a great idea. But if you try to fit different versions of the same keyword into 160 characters, your meta description will lack authority.

Mistake 7: Your Meta Description Lacks Appeal

Meta descriptions serve the dual purpose of explaining the content on your webpage and encouraging your target audience to click on your URL to know more about what you offer. So, it is quite obvious that no one would want to engage with a boring meta-description. If your meta description is boring, your target audience will pass through it right after a glance. Therefore, you must ensure your meta description is not dull. Moreover, it should also clearly state what your target audience can look forward to on your webpage.

Mistake 8: Leaving Out a Call to Action

Your meta description is incomplete if you don’t add a call to action. A call to action makes your webpage more reliable and guides your target audience on the necessary action they need to take after clicking on the URL.

For instance, you can add a simple “click here to get a free trial session” to let your audience know what your webpage offers.

Mistake 9: Confusing ‘Meta Descriptions’ with ‘Snippets’

Many website owners make the mistake of confusing the meta description and snippets.

While meta description is a brief summary of the web page that is displayed on the search engine results, snippets, on the other hand, refer to the portion of text from the webpage that search engines display in the results, highlighting the relevance of the page to the user’s query. Moreover, while meta description is an HTML tag added by the developers, snippets are dynamically generated excerpts from the webpage’s content. When Google displays snippets, it also takes reference from your meta description. Therefore, you must optimize your meta description to help Google display an accurate and intent-specific snippet.

Mistake 10: Not Writing Your Meta Descriptions at All

Meta description is a vital tactic to optimize your website for search engines. Not having a meta description can impact your website’s search engine performance. Even though the search engine automatically generates snippets from your page content, which serves the same purpose as a meta description, a well-crafted description lets you control your page summary and how users view your webpage.

Search engines may use random text from a page without a meta description to craft a potentially less relevant or unappealing snippet. Therefore, you must write a clear, concise, and appealing meta description for your web pages to control how users view your page. Moreover, the meta description must be optimized with relevant keywords to help your website rank well on search engines, leading to increased visibility.

Mistake 11: Copy-Pasting Lines from the Web Page

Simply copy-pasting lines from your web page for your meta description can harm the SEO of the page and negatively impact the user experience. If lines are copied from your webpage, it is most likely not optimized with keywords, impacting your page ranking. Moreover, if the description doesn’t effectively summarize your page, it may not encourage your target audience to click on your URL.


A well-crafted meta description is one of the main elements of a website that ranks well in search engines. Therefore, it is crucial to craft the description strategically, considering the SEO best practices.

The mistakes mentioned above are most common among new website owners. These mistakes harm the ranking of your website, defeating the entire purpose of adding a description. Hence, you must remember that while having a meta description is very important for on-page SEO, optimizing it for the search engines is equally vital. A meta description can do wonders for your website and improve its ranking if done right.

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