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Controlling description in google
Just added my copyright footer as the decription ;-)

 7:48 pm on Mar 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

Is there any way to control what part of a page that google uses for the listing description? I've read that a dmoz listing will make it so your google results will display the directory description.

While I wait for that to happen, which may be a while as there is no editor ... Is there any way to point towards or exclude portions of a page ... not a huge deal but my newest listings are displaying my copyright disclaimer at the bottom of the page ...



 7:53 pm on Mar 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

Google has been using our Meta Description tag - not sure if that's the case for everyone.


 8:03 pm on Mar 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

thanks daniel do you know if you have a dmoz or google directory listing?


 8:14 pm on Mar 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

also Google will use your meta tags when you find your site thru a keyword that is only pointing to the page you found or when you look for the url itself.


 8:19 pm on Mar 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

And also keep in mind that Freshbot usually pulls the 'new' material it found on the page as the snippet.

I've found that it helps when making housekeeping changes to a page to also fiddle something in the main content in hopes that the changed content blurb will be picked up as the snippet, not the copyright, navigation, etc.

Sometimes it works, sometimes it don't.



 10:24 pm on Mar 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

The site is recently listed in dmoz, but not yet in Google directory - this should change with the update (or the next), and then I'll see if it still uses the meta desc.


 10:59 pm on Mar 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

Google often creates snippets which consist of the search word(s) used in the search, plus a few words before and after it. Sometimes these are attractive and informative; sometimes you wonder who spilled the alphabet soup.

I'll bet that Google is showing your copyright notice because you searched for your page by your company name and the name appears in or near the notice. If you used a different search to turn up the page, the snippet would likely be different.

Consider your main target keywords, and give thought to the text that surrounds them where they appear on the page, especially the first occurence. Tweaking the surrounding text can sometimes make quite an improvement to the attractiveness of the description snippet that Google gives you, at least for your most important terms.

Google snippets sometimes show words from ALT tags and link TITLE tags, too, so if any of those are near your main target keywords (as seen from a spider's-eye view in your source code) remember to think about them too.


 11:02 pm on Mar 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

buckworks ... yes indeed I did thanks a ton ... it is a new site and I was freaking out that the description wasn't going to make a whole lot of sense ...

thanks much


 11:13 pm on Mar 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

Googles snippet on my site read 'Powered by XXX hosting' which was the last entry at the bottom of the page, until I removed the italics.


 11:34 pm on Mar 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

until I removed the italics

Very interesting. Google was using my quote of the day as a snippet -- above I attributed it to Freshbot since this was the only thing that changed on many pages -- and it was also in italic.

Might plug the quote back in without italics and see what happens.


 11:43 pm on Mar 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

Is that italics using the <i> or <em> or css?


 12:01 am on Mar 5, 2003 (gmt 0)

for one of my sites, google likes to use in its description the text I have in <b>, even though its navigation. Perhaps google is showing a preferance for 'emphasised' text, such as italics, bold etc.


 12:29 am on Mar 5, 2003 (gmt 0)

It was by use of <i>XXXX</i>
I also note use of the content of the H1 tag as athe snippet


 12:29 am on Mar 5, 2003 (gmt 0)

Yes, google loves "emphasised" text.


 6:50 pm on Mar 5, 2003 (gmt 0)

Google use the META description if it matches all of the search words, or if there's no indexable text on the page.

Otherwise, it'll matches the page as has been mentioned.

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