Page Titles & Meta Descriptions: SEO Elements to Master

Mastering the art of writing compelling page titles and meta descriptions is a cornerstone of SEO. They play a pivotal role in guiding users to your content. We’ll review the details below.

Page Title

Search engines, like Google, show the page title’s first 50-60 characters as a clickable blue link in search results. The page title’s prominence in searches makes it crucial in capturing user attention and driving traffic.

Page Title from search engine result page (SERP)

Guidelines for Writing an Effective Page Title

  1. Length: Keep it under 55 characters for optimal display.
  2. Relevance: Place the most relevant words or keywords near the beginning.
  3. Uniqueness: Ensure every page on your site has a distinct title.
  4. Descriptiveness: The title should encapsulate the essence of the page’s content.

Page Title Examples

QualityExampleCharacter Count
GoodBrexit: Insights on the UK’s EU Departure56
GoodStylish Running Shoes for Modern Athletes44
PoorTech News9
GoodLatest Tech Innovations: From AI to Smartphones51
PoorTravel Tips11
GoodEssential Travel Tips for a Safe & Memorable Vacation53

Meta Description

The meta description summarizes your web page, product, or service. Search engines display around 150-160 characters under the clickable title in search results. The meta description should concisely and accurately represent the page’s content, luring readers to click through.

Meta Description from search engine result page (SERP)

Guidelines for Writing an Engaging Meta Description

  1. Length: Aim for about 155 characters. If it’s longer, front-load the essential info.
  2. Uniqueness: Each page should have its distinct meta description.
  3. Content Preview: Offer a snapshot of what the page entails. When appropriate, integrate your unique selling proposition and a call to action.
  4. Relevant Keywords: Naturally incorporate relevant keywords.

Meta Description Examples

QualityExampleCharacter Count
PoorHome staging in Kansas City.36
GoodXYZ Home Staging: Elevate property value with expert home & commercial staging in Kansas City.133
PoorBuy books online.17
GoodDiscover a World of Stories: Bestsellers, Classics, and Hidden Gems Await at BookHub. Sign Up for An Account and Save 15% 122
PoorBest laptops for 2023. 23
GoodExplore Top-Rated Laptops of 2023: Performance Meets Design for Professionals & Gamers. Trusted Reviews from Our Expert Tech Reporters. 136
PoorHealthy recipes for busy people. 33
GoodDive into Nutritious Meals: Fresh, Easy-To-Follow Recipes for Busy Lifestyles. Our User’s Love Our Format with Easy to Download Shopping Lists and More. 153

Crafting compelling page titles and meta descriptions is more than just character counts. Aim to understand your audience, highlight your unique offerings, and speak to your target customer. 

With these guidelines and examples, you’re equipped to master these vital SEO elements.

Updating Title & Meta Description using the Yoast Plug-in

  1. Edit the desired page or post.
  2. Locate the Yoast SEO section (screenshot below).
  3. Click Edit snippet (screenshot below).
  4. Enter the desired SEO title and Meta description (screenshot below).
  5. Click Update or Publish in WordPress to save.
Yoast SEO Editor - Page Title & Meta Description