Can a META Description Kill Your Rankings?

Jul 18, 2008 • 9:40 am | comments (4) by twitter | Filed Under SEO - Search Engine Optimization
 

A WebmasterWorld member says that when he changed his meta description, his rankings plummeted on his site.

In the past, US courts found META tags immaterial but Google has recommended it. Tedster points to previous WebmasterWorld coverage that shows that there are "indirect ranking effects from the meta description, including lower clickthrough rates that can cause a decent ranking to fall away if the url doesn't perform." Barry agrees as well.

Is Google using clickthroughs as a ranking method? Forum members are not entirely sure, but one points out that Wikipedia has no meta description -- which may count for something (avoiding that lower CTR, perhaps?)

Forum discussion continues at WebmasterWorld.

Previous story: Google and Microsoft's Second Quarter Results Revealed
 

Comments:

Michael Martinez

07/18/2008 03:56 pm

Duplicate titles and meta descriptions can kill search rankings for individual pages. Whether meta descriptions are really more influential than that has not been demonstrated (and I have never found any evidence indicating it might be so). However, there are several factors related to meta descriptions that might produce unexpected results in obscure combinations. If you're using "noodp,noydir" in some pages' robots meta tags but not in all, you might see some unexpected results. If a scraper site grabs your metas, you might be hit with the duplicate content filter. If a scraper site grabs your Yahoo! or DMOZ description, you might be hit with the duplicate content filter.

Chris SEO

07/18/2008 06:11 pm

Interesting... it could of easily been many other off-page factors as well but I think I'll experiment with this.

dsouza

07/19/2008 12:06 pm

Duplicate titles and meta descriptions can kill search rankings

Dsouza jhn

02/04/2009 12:58 pm

Title and Description tags are very important for serp.

blog comments powered by Disqus