What Is The Recommended Size For The Meta Description Tag?

meta description

What Is The Recommended Number Of Characters?

For Google to select the text of your meta description for snippeting, it is recommended to have a description of at least a hundred characters, which can be up to a maximum of about 300 characters.

The maximum recommended size for a meta description was often between 150- and 160-characters max, until November 2017 when Google increased the snippet length in SERPs.

Then in May 2018, the size of the descriptions in the results dropped sharply! Currently, most descriptions are about 155 characters long. So, do you have to rewrite your meta description to not exceed 155 characters? Not necessarily, do it only if your first 150 characters do not describe your page well enough.

Is it embarrassing to have meta descriptions of 200 or 300 characters? No, provided that the first ~150 characters describe the page correctly. Anyway, in a lot of cases, Google reformulates the description by taking either your meta description or text elsewhere on the page.

What Is The Maximum Number Of Characters?

There is not an official maximum number of characters, and Google does not report descriptions that are too long in Search Console.

As this text is not taken into account by the ranking algorithm, it is not a priority to write such a long text for the meta description.

The most important thing is to have a brief presentation of the content of your page at the beginning of the main area of your page. This also applies to the pages of listings (categories) of eCommerce sites, classified ads, editorials.

What Is The Minimum Number Of Characters?

Avoid short meta descriptions, as Google does not use them to generate snippets. The meta description tag must have at least 50 characters so that it is not indicated “too short” in Google Search Console, but for my part, I recommend at least 90 characters, and if possible, about 200.

Here is an example of a Search Console report that indicates that the site contains many pages with too short a description.

How To Check The Size Of All Your Meta Description Tags?

If you have a CMS that allows it, export all meta description tags (with titles as well as titles). Use the nbcar() function of your favorite spreadsheet program to count the characters.

If this is not possible, look in Search Console, under “Appearance in Search Results > HTML Improvements”. If Google has crawled URLs with meta descriptions that are too short or too long, it indicates this here.

Does The Meta Description Tag Help SEO?

Even if Google does not use it as a basis for ranking results, it is widely recommended to work on it well. Read the details about its impact on SEO in my complete file.

What Is The Maximum Length Of The Description For Bing?

Bing advises that it should be “unique, relevant, grammatically correct, of about 160 characters or less”.

What Is The Maximum Length Of The Description For Baidu?

Baidu uses the meta description as a classification criterion; for the Chinese engine, it is not necessary to exceed 156 Latin characters and 78 characters in simplified Chinese.


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