Audisto Meta Description Checker

How to detect issues with meta descriptions

The meta description is a very important HTML tag for a site's SEO. Webmasters can easily use it to influence their site's search snippets. It can directly influence your click-through rate from the search results, which is a key multiplier to the number of clicks a site gets from the search engines.

This hints section highlights occurrences of typical issues with meta descriptions.

Issues with meta descriptions on a website can lead to lower click-through rate from the search results.

Example: Audisto Meta Description Check with the decriptions hint reports for the current crawl

Audisto Meta Description Check with the decriptions hint reports for the current crawl

Here is the list of all specific hints related to meta descriptions, that can be identified with the help of the Audisto Crawler.

Table Of Content

Hints

<meta description> missing or empty

Description

If the meta-description is missing or empty, the URL is flagged with this hint. Use this report to identify all URLs that are missing a proper meta description.

Example
<html>
<head>
...
<meta name="description" content="">
...
Importance

The meta description is usually the first choice for the description text in search results snippets. If the meta description is missing, you give up control over the appearance of your documents in the search results. Search engines will then use parts of the documents content as a description, which might lead to unexpected appearance of a site's snippets in search results.

Operating Instruction

We suggest using proper meta descriptions for all documents that are supposed to be indexed by search engines.

<meta description> occurs more than once

Description

If a meta description tag is found more than once in teh HTML, the URL is flagged with this hint.

Example
<html>
<head>
...
<meta name="description" content="First meta description">
<meta name="description" content="Second meta description">
...
Importance

Having more than one meta description can lead to unexpected appearance of the URL in search results. This may result in lower user engagement and therefore a drop for user signals for your site. This may eventually hurt the rankings of the website.

Operating Instruction

There should be only one meta-description for a URL.

Error scenarios like this usually appear due to different software automatically adding meta descriptions. If this issue occurs on a large scale, check if there is a script or CMS plugin automatically adding meta descriptions to your documents.

<meta description> too long for Google snippet

Description

If the meta description is too long to be displayed in the snippet in search results, the URL is flagged with this hint.

Example
<html>
<head>
...
<meta name="description" content="Example.com - The very best long meta descriptions online - We have one of the longest meta descriptions in the internet.">
...
Importance

If the meta description is too long to be displayed in the snippet in search results, it will be shortened by the search engine. This usually results in less appealing snippets and lower user engagement. Lower user engagement might lead to negative user signals, which can be regarded as a ranking factor by modern search engines and eventually lead to worse rankings of the site in search results.

Operating Instruction

We suggest to analyze the Click-through rates from search results to URLs with a meta description, that is too long to be shown properly in search snippets. If a URL flagged with this hint performs low in terms of Click-through rate, you may want to consider shorten the meta description.