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When a user types in a keyword, the search engine be it Yahoo or Google, scans large quantities of data and puts forth numerous results. Every possible keyword and its mutations are made available to the user. So, what sets the top results apart from the other thousands’ of results? To understand how this works, it is important to understand meta tags.  So what are Meta tags?

Meta tags, are tags which enable the search engine to identify the content of a web page. Technological advancement makes it easier for web masters to mark HTML tags, and keywords Meta tags to this end.  These cannot be seen by viewers on the website, as they are embedded in the content.  This can be  a blog, an article or a video. Meta tags are an important tool for search engine optimisation.

The website is loaded with information, and information explosion makes it difficult for the search engine to identify relevant content for the users. With the advent of networking sites and blogging, search engines have become cluttered. One way to make sure that your web page is on the list of the search engine, is to register it with the most popular search engines. Some search engines examine the characters of the first 200 words of content, and base their web page ranking in order of the keyword. In order to keep bits of information well organised web designers create Meta tags.

Meta tags are incorporated after the title tag of the web page. These tags are HTML codes embedded in the header of the web page. Meta tags can range from Meta refresh tag, Meta description tag, Meta keyword tag, Meta equiv tag, Meta copyright tag, Meta author tag and Meta robot tag.

These tags guide the search engine to the direction of relevant information. Meta description tag do not play a dominant role in the ranking of web pages, post the search initiated by the user, but its importance cannot be ignored.

The Meta description tag gives a summarised version of the content you published on the web. The description must be precise and must be able to attract the user to open your website and extract relevant information from it.

The content should not be more than 170 words as readers tend to skim read. Users do not read each and every bit of information they simply scan through results and click on options which seem to the closest to what they are searching for.  If your site does not appeal to the user, then it simply wont be looked at.   A click gone is a loss.

This is why an immaculate description of your web page is an indispensable aspect in the virtual world. Meta keyword tags were an important aspect of search engine optimisation. This is not so much the case now, but numerous web masters still use embedded Meta keyword tags. But you can certainly increase the efficiency of the search engine by conforming to certain rules regarding Meta keyword tags.  For example:

Words or phrases must be separated by the use of commas, the frequency of keywords must not be less than 11, or more than 15, and the master keyword must be placed at the top of your list.

You do not have to pay or register with any search engine to ensure search engine optimisation; if you choose not to incorporate Meta tags ensure that you use title tags. Title tags are effectively specialised Meta tags. In the realm of website designing, Meta tags are optional but why not use them when they are free? Meta tags make SEO efficient and your user, or potential client, is just a click away.

We hope this helps in your understanding of what Meta tags are.

4 Responses to “What are Meta tags?”
  1. TheTruthis34

    I agree, this is really informative. I’m now beginning to appreciate the role of meta tags. I seldom use it in my websites because I didn’t understand how it works before.

  2. Webdesign Website maken

    What are the most important tags? Do they important to the new generation search machines?

  3. Seo stratagem

    While working at the economical SEO firm http://www.bergstrom-seo.com, I did some research. The more research I did, the more I decided that meta tags and page titles are really important. If you hire an economical SEO firm, make sure that they do this properly. These are used as snippets to describe your website in the SERP pages. They’re also used by search engines to figure out what your website is about. They need to be well written and unique.
    Description meta tags are important because Google likes to use the page title and meta description tag in it’s search engines results pages. Note that we say “might” because Google may choose to use a relevant section of your page’s visibletext if it does a good job of matching up with a user’s query. These tags need to both accurately describe the website, and motivate viewers to click on your search engine results page listing.
    If you’re looking for a good introduction to SEO guideline that an economical SEO firm can follow, check this one out. http://www.bergstrom-seo.com/resources/google-search-engine-optimization-starter-guide.pdf. It was written by google, and it’s really good.

  4. Grip

    This is very informative. Did you know that I don’t use this term meta tag at all? Simply because I don’t understand what it means! But, thanks to this article. I understood everything about it. Thank you for this wonderful article.

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