What are Meta Tags and Why they are Important in SEO?

Meta tags are pieces of code that tell search engines how to display your web page in search results, as well as how important the information is.

Author: Zartasha Shahbaz

Published On: 01-11-2022

Seo On-Page SEO   What are Meta Tags and Why they are Important in SEO?

Introduction

Meta tags are HTML tags used by search engines and website visitors to describe your website's content. Meta tags can only be viewed in source code and only appear within the code of a page. The Meta tags are elements that tell search engines what a web page is about, as they are the first impression of the search engine and the first contact with the user.

An HTML web page contains meta tags in the <head> section that allow you to "legally" hide words in search engine results. There are different ways to add Meta tags to different platforms. I recommend ETTVI for adding meta tags. But you can choose any according to your choice and need.

Do Meta Tags Matter for SEO?

Having high-quality content and satisfying users is also important if you want to be ranked highly on Google in 2022. In this post, I will explain which Meta tags are useful and how it can be used to improve your SEO efforts.

How to Check Meta Tags on a Site?

Click the “View Page Source” option from the right-click menu if you want to check the Meta tags for any page. Different tools, such as ETTVI, can help you to check the Meta tags on any site.

Important Meta Tags For SEO in 2022

The Meta tags that I focus on are the 8 main ones that can improve a startup business or existing website's optimization.

  1. Title tag

  2. Meta description

  3. Canonical Tag

  4. Alternative text (Alt) Tag

  5. Robots meta tag

  6. Social Media Meta Tags

  7. Header Tags

  8. Responsive Design Meta Tag

Title Tag

In the Title tag, you specify the subject of your web page to search engines and visitors. You can use the Title element in all browsers, such as Chrome, Firefox, etc.

Always place your Title tag in the <head> section of your site.

The optimal length for the Title tag: Google usually displays between 55 and 64 characters (keep it under 60 characters).

Optimizing the title tag is important for both search engines and visitors. The title tag appears in the SERP and the tab of the browser.

Key Points to writing a good Title Tag:

  • You should add "modifiers" to your title tag (How to Get The Best Tips | How To Find | How To Buy | How To Find Easy) to improve CTR.

  • Include long tail keywords in your title tags

  • Your website title should contain numbers (10 Best SEO-boosting HTML tags for your website)

  • Your title tag should begin with your main targeted keyword

  • Avoid stuffing your keywords

  • For each page you should have a unique Title Tag

Meta Description

Meta Descriptions are HTML elements that summarize your web page. Meta descriptions are typically shown below the title of a search result.

Code:

Despite the fact that Google does not use Meta descriptions as ranking signals, they have a massive impact on your page CTR since they appear in search results.

Optimum Length for Meta Description

The average length of the description snippet field on the desktop has been reduced from 300+ characters to around 160 characters. The average mobile search result snippet is now 130 characters.

Google-generated Description in search results

Key Points to writing a good Meta Description Tag:

  • You shouldn't put much emphasis on how many characters your Meta description is, since Google might pull the description from your content based on the query of a user.

  • Make sure that your Meta description is unique.

  • In your descriptions, include Calls-to-Action (CTAs) like Apply now, Check out, Contact us now, etc. 

  • Include your targeted keywords in descriptions

  • Provide solutions to a problem

  • Make your content relevant and specific to your users to encourage them to click

  • Add offers and discounts

  • Make sure you show empathy when writing your meta descriptions

Canonical Tag

When you have a URL with the same content as multiple URLs, you use the Canonical tag with the rel=canonical attribute.

We can also avoid indexing duplicate pages by implementing the Canonical tag in our code.

A canonical Tag Syntax:

Where should we choose a canonical URL?
Multiple URLs

  • http://www.example.com

  • https://www.example.com

  • http://example.com

  • http://example.com/index.php

Google identifies all of these URLs as duplicates of the Homepage. This problem was fixed with canonical tags (rel=canonical).


Session ID URLs
There are several kinds of automatically generated URLs in a CMS which are usually based on tracking URLs, breadcrumb links, and permalinks

Mobile URL:
If you use a special URL (m.example.com) for the mobile version of your website.

Alternative Text (Alt) Tag
Alt tags are essential for any image since search engines cannot read images. So you need to add Alt text to your images so that the search engine can recognize them.
The syntax for Alt Text:

Main points to consider while writing alt-tags for images:

  • Use descriptive filenames for all images

  • Use short, clear, and concise alt-text

  • Make sure you always use a high-quality, original image, as this will help you succeed

  • Create an image sitemap

  • Use 50-55 characters in the alt text

  • Use an optimal file size without degrading the quality to increase page loading speed

Robots Meta Tag

In the Robots Meta tag, the web crawlers are given instructions about whether to index a page or not index it.

For search engine crawlers, the Robots Meta tag contains four main values:

  • FOLLOW - All links on that page will be followed by the crawler

  • INDEX - In the indexing process, the search engines crawl the entire page

  • NOFOLLOW – This means that the search engine crawler will not follow a web page or any of its links

  • NOINDEX – This page will NOT be indexed by the search engine crawler

The Robots Meta tag syntax:

Social Media Meta Tags 

Open Graph Tags:

The Open Graph Meta tags promote the integration of Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google with the website URLs you share on these platforms.

Sample

Twitter Cards

Similar to Open Graph, Twitter cards require the addition of special Meta tags reserved for Twitter only. When you share your page on Twitter, these tags will enhance the display of your page.

Sample

Header Tags

Header tags are used for creating headings, so we can change font styles.

H1, H2, H3, H4, H5, and H6 are the heading elements, with H1 being the highest (or most important) level and H6 being the lowest.

Responsive Design Meta Tag

The last Meta tag we'll discuss here is the Responsive Design Meta tag. This meta tag is referred to as the "Viewport Meta Element". We can control the layout of web pages on mobile browsers by using the viewport meta tag.

You can find it in the head section of your web page.

Syntax:

            <meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width, initial-scale=1">

Conclusion

You can make the most of your on-page strategy if you don't overlook the little things that add to the grand picture. Meta tags remain essential since they make up the taxonomy of your site.

Some tags aren't as important as others, but they can give you an edge over your competitors who don't bother with them. Adding small changes to your website that will enhance the user experience and help search engines better understand your site will be appreciated by both parties, and will certainly be successful in the long run.

Zartasha Shahbaz

Versatile, creative, experienced, and voraciously curious writer with a dedication to excellence creates compelling and unique pieces for a wide range of projects..

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