How are meta descriptions changing in 2018

Character fluctuations are not the only thing that has changed for meta descriptions in 2018


While Google is still not willing to give a specific length for meta descriptions since its last update, professionals advise that yes, characters matter, but quality content matters even more. Breathe meaning to your meta descriptions because that is how you will thrive in 2018!

It is no news saying that the SERP landscape has never seen more rapid changes than it has in the last two years. With multiple screens, evolving user needs, and increased competition, SEO professionals, advertisers, and copywriters need to keep tabs on any and all changes. Adapting to the algorithm changes Google drops in every now and then is a huge part of that. Speaking of changes, here is a closer look at how meta descriptions are changing in 2018.


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But first, what are meta descriptions?

Meta descriptions are snippets whose purpose is to summarize the content of a particular page in a way that engages users and sparks enough interest in the eyes, so they decide to click through. These short pieces of text are displayed under the URL in the search results and are marked up in the HTML of a page. Meta descriptions also appear when pages are shared on social media, such as Facebook, Twitter, or Youtube.

Size Does Matter  — Mobile VS Desktop

December 2017 saw a drastic change in meta descriptions with them reaching length limits of up to 290 characters. Google has since started coming back to previous limits, solidifying that comeback with its most recent meta description update in May this year. According to best practice, it is best to keep meta descriptions between 120 and 158 characters for desktop and up to 120 characters for mobile screens. Titles are also getting shorter.

Character fluctuations are not the only thing that has changed for meta descriptions in 2018. Google’s algorithm also “judges” the usefulness of meta descriptions and it can choose to include more of your content if it is like to answer users’ search queries. Keep that in mind next time you have a meta description to write!