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Delete Description Meta Tags
If you can't make them all unique
tiori




msg:3272608
 2:40 pm on Mar 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

How about not using the "description" meta tag if you can't make all your descriptions unique?

 

coopster




msg:3272791
 5:18 pm on Mar 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

Why can't you make them unique?

Simsi




msg:3272853
 6:13 pm on Mar 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

I get it - have a similar issue.

An example might be where you hook out groupings of products that contain one unique characteristic. For example: "All providers offering blue widgets". Then another page you might have "all providers offering rose-tinted widgets". You might have 500 pages like this all with a different colour.

The descriptions are the same except for one word. The question is, is that enough to make them unique?

[edited by: Simsi at 6:14 pm (utc) on Mar. 6, 2007]

trinorthlighting




msg:3272865
 6:25 pm on Mar 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

Try shorter descriptions. Here is a good example:

1. Red widgets for sale
2. White widgets for sale

25% Unique (Red/White), 75% duplicated (widgets for sale)

Keeping it shorter like that will lessen the % of duplication

1. Red Widgets
2. White Widgets

50% Unique (Red/White) 50% Duplicate (Widgets)

When it comes to duplication, look at the percentage.....

tiori




msg:3272941
 7:01 pm on Mar 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

Why can't you make them unique?

When you have a very large site with 1000's upon 1000's of pages, it gets a bit hard to make them unique.

coopster




msg:3272942
 7:02 pm on Mar 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

Not if the pages contain unique content, or variations as described earlier in the thread.

LifeinAsia




msg:3272973
 7:19 pm on Mar 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

When you have a very large site with 1000's upon 1000's of pages, it gets a bit hard to make them unique.

If you can write the unique content for 100s of pages, then writing unique content for the titles shouldn't be that much more difficult.

If you're not writing unique content in the first place, then non-unique titles is the least of your worries.

dailypress




msg:3272976
 7:20 pm on Mar 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

Coopster:
In some cases where you are using PHP for users to post content on your server you cant really have a unique meta description.

fatpeter




msg:3272993
 7:30 pm on Mar 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

I had 12000 pages of old content on a site which was I admit mostly duplicate and never ranked well. I contemplated getting rid of it but it was bringing me a couple of hundred visitors a day so I kept it.
All the meta description tags were the same for all the pages and I deleted them across the 12000 pages. A week later I suddenly noticed an extra 1000 visitors a day and when I investigated those 12000 pages were actually ranking a bit better. 1 month later and no change.

I'm not saying I recommend it but it worked for me....but then I didn't care about those 12000 pages!

BigDave




msg:3273067
 8:10 pm on Mar 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

The only time I ever use meta description is when google consistently chooses bad snippets for the page. they just aren't worth the bother otherwise.

Not having a description doesn't seem to have hurt my ranking or traffic any.

arubicus




msg:3273138
 9:14 pm on Mar 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

" The only time I ever use meta description is when google consistently chooses bad snippets for the page. they just aren't worth the bother otherwise."

Another way to use them on static type pages, such as an article, is to override the snippet and use a more promotional type language to entice clickers.

As in (off the top of my head):

NO - "Learn about the features of red widgets here."

Yes - "Don't purchase that red widget just yet or you won't be entirely pleased with what you get! We will explain all of the features and show you the pros and cons of each so you can make the RIGHT choice for your needs."

Something like that at least.

asusplay




msg:3273162
 9:37 pm on Mar 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

Not having descriptions in my opinion will hurt your serps on Google and can make pages go supplemental.

At worst try and make them short or select some text from the page and change a few words here and there.

SullySEO




msg:3273249
 11:17 pm on Mar 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

I stopped using meta descriptions on new product pages because products are very similar. It has worked well but I admit I am concerned about how long that will last!

BigDave




msg:3273266
 11:45 pm on Mar 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

Not having descriptions in my opinion will hurt your serps on Google and can make pages go supplemental.

I haven't found that to be the case at all. It might give you a slight edge if you have a lot of similar content and low PR, but I have a site with over 10k pages in the index and no meta descriptions, and less than 1% of the pages are supplemental. And many of those review pages rank higher than the manufacturer's own website for their company name. YMMV.

SEOPTI




msg:3273278
 12:06 am on Mar 7, 2007 (gmt 0)

" Not having descriptions in my opinion will hurt your serps on Google and can make pages go supplemental."

That's nonsense, believe me.

coopster




msg:3273360
 1:12 am on Mar 7, 2007 (gmt 0)


Coopster:
In some cases where you are using PHP for users to post content on your server you cant really have a unique meta description.

Sure you can. Whether or not you choose to use a meta description is completely up to you. But you can indeed control the element, user-provided or not. Also, if the user does not provide said element data, don't output anything to the browser.

arubicus




msg:3273431
 2:34 am on Mar 7, 2007 (gmt 0)

"Also, if the user does not provide said element data, don't output anything to the browser. "

Or you can auto snippet the first 255 characters of the post.

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