Google will now allow businesses and sites to list longer snippets of meta information for SEO. Many businesses may be wondering if they can benefit from this, or can their ranking be harmed if they simply do nothing. We’d like to touch on the impact of the increase in the length of the meta snippets.
What Are the New Meta Description Lengths?
Now you can type in longer snippets and meta descriptions on Google. These have brand-new character limits, and it’s something new for SEO marketers and agencies. When a user types in their words or phrase into Google search, a snippet will pop up. This is a short description of what Google provides so you can determine if you wish to visit a site, or not. Google takes these snippets from the meta description tag of the web page.
The old limit was 165 characters. The new limit is 273 characters. Not a big change, but you could add in 3 to 5 more lines of text for your site. This can offer more information to determine if a customer should visit a site.
Before, if the description was cut off at 165 characters, you may have had to visit a site. Now, that 272 character description may be all you need. The meta title length can work both ways—encourage the right users to find your site—or dissuade people who can now read the full description. In other words, many searchers don’t have to click to determine if the links are what they wanted.
When Did the Meta Information Lengths Change?
The meta snippet length update happened around November 2017. Not every site has implemented the change. Right now, about 50% of search results may have only 1 of the 10 ten on the first page with a longer meta description length. This means that your site can benefit from doing the meta snippet length update because most likely, none of your competitors have.
How Can The New Meta Information Lengths Impact My Website?
When you take advantage of the new meta title length you have more space. Even though you’re giving more info to the searcher, Google may actually rank you higher. You can be sacrificing clicks, but ending up with better ranking.
Yes, it can impact click-through rates. However, it’s possible that certain people may actually click through on their more complex searches because they have been enticed by the longer descriptions. And these are the customers that are likely going to spend money, rather than the users who just drop by for a peek.
What is the Downside to the New Meta Information Lengths?
One of the downsides is that there is only so much space on the first page. This may push a few sites onto the next page when they were on the first page before Google did that meta snippet length update. People may not be encouraged to scroll down, as there is more info at the top.
Just like any other Google update, it’s important to run with it. So get started on updating your meta description lengths. You may have to wait for CMS to catch up with the updates too, so give them a push if you must.
Need Help Maximizing the Impact of Your Meta Information?
Meta information is sometimes your first and only chance to earn a user’s click If you need some assistance with meta title lengths and how they can impact your SEO, please contact SEO Expert today.