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How To Optimise Your Meta Descriptions Using Yoast

Difficulty: Intermediate

Forget about writing the most optimised 320 character meta description, that’s basic stuff. This is much more in-depth, these tips and tricks will help your page stand out in Google.

Steps For Optimising Meta Descriptions

1. Add Date Snippets

In your Yoast settings change your date in snippet preview to “Show” for posts. This will activate it in your Yoast settings. If you aren’t using the Yoast plugin, we highly recommend it.

You will then need to make sure your publish dates are being displayed on the blog page itself, you might need your web developers help to get this working. In most cases web developers opt to turn this off as a default, usually because most website owners don’t upload regular content.

2. Update The Dates On Old Content

So in step 1 you added the date snippet, but it seems pointless if the blog post you are optimising was uploaded two years ago. People aren’t going to want to click on it, so what you can do is change the publish date to the current date and update it.

3. Add Rich Snippets

Rich snippets allow you to add a large range of information to your search listing, for example, IMDB has a rating system in their rich snippets. This includes stars, the rating score and how many votes there were.

If you have really good Google reviews then you can add your Google reviews to your search listing. This will look similar to the above listing but will show your average rating for example “Rating: 4.7 - 80 reviews”. If you are running a WordPress website then you can use the “All In One Rich Snippets” plugin. If you want to read more about rich snippets you can check out this article. This is a very simple thing to implement and it will vastly increase your click-through rates, it’s also crazy how many websites don’t use this to their benefit.

4. Using Dates In Headlines

This is quite a simple one but can increase your click-through rate, as well as improve the SEO of your page. People often include the date when they are searching for something. If you have the current date listed in the title of your page/post then it has a higher chance to be clicked.

5. Use optimised URL’s

Often people have incredibly long and confusing URL’s, this can really hurt click-through rate as well as SEO. For example, if your page when searched on Google is about Digital Marketing then it has website URL as people are going to be much less likely to click on it. On the other hand, if it was a well-optimised URL such as people are definitely going to be more likely to click. You can change this on WordPress by updating your permalinks we would suggest for basic users to use the “Post Name” setting which will use the format of this is the most friendly URL structure. If you needed something more complex for categories etc, it might not be suitable.


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