Search Engine 101: Meta Description Tags

Posted on February 11, 2012



Especially with the web, there is always more than meets the eye, and invisible factors like Meta Description Tags play a big role in optimizing a site for search engine users.

Both are found within the HTML/coding of a site, so neither will be seen when the page is opened, but both play a role in the search engine result process. A Meta Description Tag is the portion of the HTML coding that is found within the <Head> and </Head> section, and it is basically a brief and concise summary of what your page is about.

The Meta Description Tag takes the basic form of <head><meta name=”description” content=”CONCISE SUMMARY HERE.”></head>, with the bold, italicized portion being where you would put your summary.

It is important to note that the Meta Description Tag plays a small role in determining your ranking, but it’s biggest role comes after the search engine results are generated. Search engines will provide a brief, two-line text summary for each result generated from the Meta Description Tag, as seen in this screenshot developed by (see above). Google especially will mostly use Meta Description Tags to give depth to its search engine results. recommends that Meta Description Tags be limited to 170-200 words, containing keywords that are a genuine representation of your page, while keeping in mind what people are searching for.


Posted in: SEO Basics