Click Through Rate or CTR ultimately determines if your web pages are clicked upon by searchers on the Internet or not. Web pages with relevant, optimized and well-targeted meta-descriptions are more likely to be clicked upon by the Internet users when they scroll through various page entries in the search engine results page (SERPs).
Will Meta Descriptions Affect Page Rankings?
Google did clarify way back in 2007 that meta-descriptions have no bearing on page rankings. But, Google did say that pages optimized with better meta-descriptions were more likely to record higher CTR.
Now, Will Meta Descriptions Help in SEO?
Upon first glance, it appears that meta-descriptions should not have any effect on page rankings at all.
But wait, user behavior should ideally be factored into the algorithm of a search engine. If the users have been consistently choosing one page out of the 10 on the 1st page of SERPS, for instance, do you not think the algorithm would start perceiving it as more high quality link? Yes, that’s the catch.
We don’t know for sure what Google’s algorithms do exactly in this case. But, it is a well known fact that meta-descriptions are closely related to CTR, which in turn is related to user-behavior. The user-behavior in turn (we safely assume) should be related to page ranking.
Invest in Meta Descriptions
We recommend that you write descriptive and persuasive descriptions for each one of the pages you are optimizing for search engines. Make it a point to never leave default excerpts serve as the meta-descriptions. That simply won’t cut it.
When your pages start ranking after great effort by the SEO team and finally appear in SERPs, you do not want to miss out on the CTR simply because the titles or descriptions weren’t so great!
Hire a good copywriter or content writer and make sure that each one of the descriptions inspires curiosity (the way a creative advertisement does) and compels the reader to check out what’s published on a page. Make sure to use the right length of words and never try to spill ‘extra’ content just for the sake of it!