Opti­miz­ing your meta descrip­tion tag is a key ele­ment in opti­miz­ing your land­ing page. Crawlers take con­tent that they find in the meta descrip­tion tag to pro­vide a descrip­tion of the page in the search results page:

The organic result for Adobe Acrobat features a descriptive and clear meta description.

The organic result for Adobe Acro­bat fea­tures a descrip­tive and clear meta description.

The com­mon wis­dom around mak­ing a great meta descrip­tion is that it’s best to cre­ate a strong, unique, and con­cise mes­sage that accu­rately describes the theme and con­tent of a page. But in this rec­om­men­da­tion SEO mar­keters might for­get that a com­pelling meta descrip­tion tag can help searchers decide if a page matches their query or doesn’t: to click or not to click.

In today’s blog, we’ll take a look at a case study we con­ducted with the sup­port of Jacque­lyn Chew (who enables search test­ing on Adobe search team). This case study exam­ines how using branded mes­sag­ing in the meta descrip­tion impacts click-through rate (CTR) and vis­its from the search results page.

Hypoth­e­sis: Stud­ies on the SERP (search engine result page) heat map sug­gest that searchers tend to focus their atten­tion to the left and top parts of the page. We antic­i­pated that using a strong Adobe brand name at the begin­ning of the meta descrip­tion can have a pos­i­tive influ­ence on people’s per­cep­tion of the page, thus increas­ing CTR from the search results page.

Method­ol­ogy: Jackie pro­posed chang­ing between the test and orig­i­nal mes­sage every one to weeks. We intended to com­pare test page per­for­mance to con­trol page per­for­mance. Jackie also ana­lyzed paid search data to look for any poten­tial impact that SEM would have on SEO per­for­mance dur­ing test periods.

Results: Dur­ing the test period, when we used branded mes­sag­ing, we saw an 86 per­cent increase in CTR from search results, com­pared with the orig­i­nal unbranded message.

The above graph measures click through rate (y-axis) over time (x-axis). Clearly there was an increase in click through rate when we implemented the new meta description features.

The above graph mea­sures click through rate (y-axis) over time (x-axis). Clearly there was an increase in click through rate when we imple­mented the new meta descrip­tion features.

Ana­lyze and Adjust: Dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing is a fast-changing envi­ron­ment, and we need test­ing to help iden­tify oppor­tu­ni­ties that drive KPIs. Sim­ple changes like adding brand­ing to the begin­ning of a meta descrip­tion can have a big impact on how pages per­form in search.

2 comments
JessicaElmore
JessicaElmore

Meta description tag is still very important. Beginners often write it on the autopilot or just copy few sentances from the text. But it can be a powerful tool in right hands.


Tip of the day for me - changing it due to the changes in search engine activity

benedekdavid7
benedekdavid7


Dear Sir/Madam


My name is David Benedek, I’m from Romania, Europe. I've done researches in blogging in my home country when I did my BA studies; I’ve studied how Romanian bloggers use their blog to make money with them and how they achieve it. 

Now I’m finishing my MA studies and I’m studying corporate blogs, I want to make a comparison between American and Romanian corporate blogs, how they blog, for what purpose are they blogging. I want to ask you if you’d mind to answer some questions? 

If you have time, here you find my Survey: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1hs7DZzWvrlCUVaSShAzvXIFjDk9Rd3su9V4NkM4dCkg/viewform?usp=send_form



Thank you for your answer!


Yours sincerely, 

David.