Sometimes improving a website’s presence via search engine optimization (SEO) is very straightforward, and sometimes it’s not.

In the case of large websites, basic SEO improvements can be a massive headache. If you’ve ever optimized a large website, you know they can be prone to a myriad of SEO issues that tend to fall into one of two buckets, traditional technical SEO or issues of scale.

We could spend a lot of time talking about each, but for this article, I’d like to touch on a solution for a particular issue of scale: having to retroactively write a lot of web page meta descriptions.

I know, it’s not a sexy-sounding topic, but meta descriptions are extremely important for SEO. Along with title tags, they represent our own version of ad copy, especially since they don’t really impact query-result relevance. As long as Google doesn’t obliviate that small snippet of text, it represents our chance to capture searcher intention and influence click-through rate.

In an ideal world, the SEO practitioner in charge would act as a copywriter. Having a strong understanding of the business, audience and search intent, they would manually craft optimal, persuasive text. For small websites, this is very feasible. For larger websites with thousands of pages, this becomes an impossibility. In all likelihood, even a big business will never have enough resources to change each meta description by hand.

So what’s an SEO to do? Is the only solution to hire more writers?

Typical solutions

For some websites, especially websites where many of these pages follow the same page template, it may make sense to use the same logic and utilize templated meta descriptions as well.

Of course, this is dependent on database structure, content management system (CMS) restrictions and development resources, but it is still an excellent solution if feasible.

Have an e-commerce website with a lot of product pages? Try something along the lines of:

Buy {product name} from Store Name today. {short product description}

Is this an ideal description? Probably not, but it’s better than letting Google automatically insert random and irrelevant paragraphs of text or footer links they perceive as representative.

Is templating not an option for your company? The reality is, if you don’t provide a meta description, Google will do the heavy lifting and show a snippet anyway. Sometimes you even write a custom meta description, and Google rewrites them a…

[Read the full article on Search Engine Land.]

The post Reducing the time it takes to write meta descriptions for large websites appeared first on Marketing Land.

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