What is a meta description? The two most powerful lines in the ecommerce world

What does a person do when they want to buy a product?

They search for it on Google.

And when they do that, the search engine shows them 10 results.

That’s to say, 10 shops that want the same thing as you – clients to click on their search result so that they have a better chance of making a sale.

So how can you make them choose you and not them?

By optimizing the two most powerful lines to get visitors and potential clients: the meta description.

  • What is this description?
  • Why is it so important?
  • How can you optimize it to get more clicks?

Don’t worry! We’re going to explain that and much more in this post. From now on, you’ll know all the secrets to writing meta descriptions.

And do you know what’s even better?

It will also improve your shop’s SEO positioning. 😉

Let’s get started.

What is a meta description and how does it affect your shop’s organic positioning?

We’ve already talked about the meta title (which has lots to do with meta descriptions), but let’s start with the definition:

A meta description is bit of HTML code that describes your website’s content and that appears just below the meta title on the result page.

Meta titles and meta descriptions, along with the URL, form a snippet. Below you can see our meta tags on Google:

Meta description doofinder 1 e1590230675495

It also appears in the <head> section of your website’s HTML, though it’s a bit uglier there. 😉

meta description html doofinder

Differences between title and description

There are essentially two differences:

  • Goal: The title has a direct value in terms of page positioning while the description doesn’t (but it does indirectly).
  • Length: The title is way shorter whereas the description gives you more text length to play with.

But let’s start talking about what’s really interesting – how the description affects positioning.

As we mentioned before, it doesn’t affect positioning directly the way the title does.

However, be careful because it does affect CTR (the percentage of clicks that a link gets, in this case, on Google pages), a factor that is highly valued by the search engine when positioning your site.

Which means:

A good meta description will help you get users’ attention and generate more clicks.

Bearing this in mind, we’re going to explain what the best tricks are when it comes to writing irresistible meta descriptions.

How to write a good meta description to send traffic to your website

A meta description can have up to 160 characters (about two lines). In that space, you need to write a description that:

  • Includes your keyword: to reinforce your title (these are often put in bold to stand out visually).
  • Is attractive and persuasive: so it can encourage your clients to click the link.

That’s to say, you need to write persuasive text that encourage clients to carry out an action (click on your link) and, on top of that, that is liked by Google. Sound familiar?

Indeed, we’re talking about copywriting.

Copywriting is about using words to get people to carry out a specific action.

And that’s what we are seeking with meta description.

Easy, right? Now let’s see what you have to take into account to write it correctly.

You’ll want to notes…

1. Don’t forget the keyword

While it doesn’t affect positioning, it’s advisable to include it or a variation of it.

In addition, as we said before, when the keyword is the same one that users type, it appears in bold in your meta description so that it stands out even more.

2. Be careful with length

Double check the number of characters – if you write too many, Google will cut off your text and it’ll look horrible. Have a look at this example that we found when we typed “training with weights”.

que es la meta description

Don’t worry, we’ll tell you how you can avoid that later on in this post.

However, you can try to play with the ellipsis to generate curiosity. Check out this example about “basketball sneakers”.

como escribir la meta description

As you can see, the text is not cut off. Instead, it’s a strategy to encourage them to click.

3. The goal is to catch clients’ attention

Get the most of each word to make clients click on your link. Talk about the benefits of using your product.

You can see how it’s done with this example:

meta description

In this case, the meta description shows that the “stikets”, besides being “customizable and resistant”, also work for children’s clothes that might get lost when they start school. 😉

4. Add a call to action

Tell your clients what you want them to do when they see your link with direct and easy orders:

  • Click now.
  • Order now.
  • Use this discount.
  • Fill in this form for more information.

These CTAs (Calls to Action) are more efficient when you place them at the end of the text and use imperatives.

5. Use emojis and rich snippets

Visual elements help your meta description stand out from the rest. In order to do that, you can use two resources:

  • Emojis: These are symbols that help you emphasize the message to get possible clients’ attention. Be careful, Google can’t see them all (the green tick is usually visible ).
  • Rich snippets: They show additional information such as the star review of a page. If users see that a page is well rated, they are more likely to click.

Here you have an example of both of those in action:

meta description meta tag

Visually, it’s highlighted and stands out from other results that only include plain text, so users are drawn toward clicking the link.

6. Always fill out the meta description

If you don’t include this description, search engines will show a random extract from your site by default, which usually has no effect on users.

Don’t waste the opportunity to stand out from competitors on the results page: write a good meta description and win them over.

7. Tools that ease the creation of meta tags

The meta description has to clearly and concisely summarize your post content and, besides, it has to encourage the click. And it has to do all that in 160 characters.

Of course, achieving such a goal is no easy task, and no, you can’t just write the first thing that comes to mind. Our recommendation is that you try different options before publishing the final description.

Here you have a snippet simulator that lets you see how it will appear on Google.

Once you like the result, you can add it to your online shop.

Don’t know how to do it? Let’s see how.

Meta descriptions that appear in your ecommerce

Any page of your ecommerce that is indexed should have its title and description optimized.

Keep calm – it’s easy. We’ll take a look now.

1. Website meta description

We’ve already seen some examples, but let’s see a few more.

If your brand is well known, you can “afford” to focus less on the benefits in your descriptions and you can talk about the characteristics, like AliExpress does.

Snippet meta description

They clearly express in the title that it’s an online shop where buying is easy. In the meta description, they reinforce the ideas of “secure payment” and “free shipping”.

2. Product card meta title

The meta description is especially important when you have an ecommerce because many people search for transactional keywords.

A transactional keyword is the one that implicitly includes the user’s buying intention.

For example, if someone types “buy iPhone X” or “iPhone X price”, it means that they are looking for information on purchasing the phone at the best possible price.

That’s why creating an attractive meta description is so important – if we get the user’s attention and they click, we’ll have better chances of selling.

Here you have an example:

meta description for seo

If you read carefully, you’ll notice that in just two lines they are able to tell you about their products, that they can be returned within 100 days, and that the shipping is fast.

And to do it more visually, they add the rich snippets with the stars and the “+” emoji.

3. Meta title of your ecommerce blog posts

It’s also very important that you adapt your post’s descriptions – don’t forget that your content is also key to your SEO strategy.

And, once again, the description has a lot to say in your favor.

Have a look at this example:

escribir meta description blog 1

his example makes use of all the tricks that we’ve mentioned:

  • They include the keyword.
  • They have a final call to action with an imperative.
  • It shows reviews with rich snippets.
  • It presents the benefits for the clients.

As you can see, you have a lot of options to get that much-desired click the user. 😉

Where you can insert your ecommerce pages’ meta descriptions

We’re explaining how to add your mete description depending on the CMS platform you use for your business.

1. Meta title for WordPress

The meta description in WordPress can be added the same way the meta title is – that’s to say, by using the Yoast SEO plugin (or a similar one).

It’s available for pages, products, and blog posts.

Click the option “Edit snippet” and “SEO Title” and you’ll see two options:

  1. Slug: to create the URL that will be shown in searches.
  2. Meta description: where you’re going to enter your descriptive text.

WordPress helps you with the length of the text – there’s a green bar that turns red when the length is too long.

Important: Don’t trust that bar too much and make sure that both your title and your description are as short as possible because sometimes, even if the bar is green on Yoast, Google cuts them off.

2. Meta title in PrestaShop

There are different paths depending on the description that you’re writing. It may be the one for the whole page or the one for your products or categories.

  • Page meta description: Follow this path from the control panel: Preferences > SEO & URLs. Choose “Index” and click “Modify”.
  • Category meta description: To add a meta description to category pages, follow the path: Catalog > Categories. Choose a category from the list and click “Modify”.
  • Product meta description: The path is similar to that of a category: Catalog > Products, choose the product, and edit it by clicking on the pencil icon.

Remember to save all the changes that you carry out before you leave your PrestaShop admin panel.

Are you ready to write the best meta descriptions?

With good descriptions, you’ll be getting the most out of your online shop window on the best shopping street in the virtual world: Google.

Take advantage of this opportunity to fill your shop with possible clients because, as you know, the more traffic you get, the higher the possibility of increasing your sales. 😉