users now have a longer snippet in the search results
Have you been noticing that META descriptions appear to be longer in the search results? According to Search Engine Land, a Google spokesperson said to them that they had recently made a change to make snippets more useful for the user.
A snippet is a preview of a website when it displays in the search results. Generally, these are called “META descriptions” and they provide the user with a small box of text when performing a search result.
An image was captured on my website of a lower text count snippet
As you can see the snippet reads, “Want to rank…” etc. Over the last few weeks, you may have been seeing some websites with much longer snippets. This is due to Google’s updates in an effort to give the user a better experience.
Here is an image after the update and optimization for a longer snippet on our website
We were able to cram in two more sentences using this new update. Google has said that the average snippet length has increased from 170 characters to 230 characters.
positive SEO implications
With this new snippet length, what are you going to accomplish in your META descriptions? This may actually have positive implications for your SEO simply because you can cram more of your target keywords.
With these negative implications, it is also important to remember that you cannot keyword stuff your META or Google will penalize you. We recommend using one targeted keyword in your snippet with a healthy mix of synonyms, or phrase matches of your target keyword.
updating your content
It might also be clever to back to any content you have on your blog and update your snippets. With all of the positive SEO effects, it would only make sense to add in keywords and phrases of that keyword.
By updating your content, you may see a positive increase in your click-through-rates.
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