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Google Expands Description Snippets

     -     Mar 26th, 2018   -     Search Engine Optimization   -     0 Comments

Right around the time that marketers were scrambling to get all the details of the new tax reform documented and in order, another important change was happening. In late December 2017, Google announced that it was going to expand it is description snippet for the traditional 160 characters up to 320 characters. While it was announced as an upcoming change some time ago it appears that the change has finally been implemented. To see the expanded snippets, simply search for your firm’s name in Google and scroll through the results. At some point, you will see a page that has a great deal of information in the description area. To help clients, prospects and others understand the change and identify the impact on their firm’s SEO efforts, FlashPoint Marketing has provided a summary of key points below.

Why the Change?

Google is all about the user experience, so it makes sense they would want to increase the amount of information available regarding a piece of content. For example, have you ever done a search on Google and then clicked one of the results to find it is was not at all what you are looking for? Well I can assure you this has happened to me. So, to reduce the opportunity for this to happen they have expanded the snippet to provider searchers with additional information about the content topic.

What Does Google Say?

According to Google, “The fact that our snippets have gotten longer doesn’t change the fundamentals of writing a description tag. They should generally inform and interest users with a short, relevant summary of what a page is about. We now display slightly longer snippets, which means we might display more of a meta description tag. So, there’s no need for publishers to suddenly expand their meta description tags, if they feel their current ones are adequate. As a reminder, our snippets are dynamically generated. Sometimes, they use what’s in a meta description tag. More often, they are generated by showing content from the page itself and perhaps parts of the meta description tag, as is appropriate for individual queries.”

What Should I Do Next?

While it’s unlikely that a firm’s SEO will be negatively impacted by shorter meta descriptions, I think it will be interesting to see if there is a corresponding reduction in click-throughs to the website. It’s logical to assume the more information you offer in a search, the higher the likelihood that you will get qualified click-throughs to your site. My suggestion is to review the highest performing content on your website and make a gradual plan to expand the meta descriptions for those sections. Since the content already performs well additional information will allow you to keep up that trend.

In Perspective

Digital marketing is quite tricky and just when you think you have it down Google will go and make several seismic changes that require you to reassess your website and SEO strategy. Although this sometimes frustrates me, the good news is that it’s an opportunity to take your site to the next level. If you have questions about the expanded description snippets or need assistance with SEO for your firm or company, FlashPoint Marketing can help. For additional information call us at 954-621-8080 or click here to contact us. We look forward to speaking with you soon.

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