Google recently updated its search snippets documentation, highlighting the increased importance of page content in determining which snippets appear in search results, rather than meta descriptions. What you must remember:
- Google makes it clear that page content is now the primary source for creating search snippets.
- Meta descriptions are no longer considered the primary source for snippets, but are still useful if they describe the page better than the content itself.
- Inserting keywords into meta descriptions for SEO optimization is an outdated practice.
The new face of search snippets
Google has updated its documentation to clarify what influences the algorithm to choose what to display in snippets (the few sentences describing the topic of the web page below the title). This tells us that page content is the main source of snippets in search results.
This update moves away from the practice of favoring meta descriptions as the main source of excerpts. For a while now, we have noticed that Google no longer systematically selects the meta-description provided, but itself chooses the page extract that it considers the most relevant.
Implications for SEO
This development calls into question traditional SEO strategies, which still often advised using meta-descriptions as an advertising tool, by integrating keywords and making the Internet user want to click on this result (the meta-description). description having, as a reminder, no impact on natural referencing).
Google now recommends meta descriptions that provide an accurate and concise summary of the page’s content. And again, this does not mean that he will base his research extract on these.
End of meta descriptions as an advertising tool
Gone are the days of using meta descriptions to grab attention in search results. Google now favors descriptions that accurately reflect the content of the page.
This update highlights the importance of content quality and relevance. Website owners should focus on creating content that directly responds to user queries, and not focus on optimizing meta descriptions.