What They Are & How to Use Them for SEO

What They Are & How to Use Them for SEO


Meta tags are HTML tags that present details about a webpage’s content material to engines like google and customers.

They play an important function in influencing how a web site seems in search outcomes and may impression click-through price (CTR).

Meta tags are often added within the <head> part of your HTML. Right here’s one instance:

<!DOCTYPE html>
<meta title="description" content material="Flip the algorithm into a buddy. Make your enterprise seen on-line with 55+ instruments for search engine optimization, PPC, content material, social media, aggressive analysis, and extra.">

Within the instance above, a meta tag known as “meta description” is used. In search outcomes, that can appear to be this:

An example of meta description in search results

Google and different engines like google usually show the meta description in search outcomes. 

Google helps a number of meta tags:

Meta tag title




Gives a brief description of the web page.This description is usually used within the snippet proven in search outcomes.

<meta title=”description” content material=”Make your enterprise seen on-line with 55+ instruments for search engine optimization, PPC, content material, social media, aggressive analysis, and extra.”>


Controls how engines like google crawl and index your pages. You need to use “index” and “observe” to permit each actions. Or “noindex” and “nofollow” to forestall them. When you don’t specify something, “index” and “observe” are the default values.

<meta title=”robots” content material=”index,observe”>


Much like robots, however particular to Google.

<meta title=”googlebot” content material=”index,observe”>


Disables some optionally available Google options on your website, such because the sitelinks search box that enables customers to look inside your website from Google, and the Google text-to-speech services that allow customers to listen to your webpages. The supported values are “nositelinkssearchbox” and “nopagereadaloud.”

<metaname=”google” content material=”nositelinkssearchbox”>


Verifies the possession of the web site for Google Search Console.

<meta title=”google-site-verification” content material=”+nxGUDJ4QpAZ5l9Bsjdi102tLVC21AIh5d1Nl23908vVuFHs34=”>

Content material-Kind and charset

Specifies the content material sort and character set for the webpage. That is essential for rendering non-ASCII characters appropriately.

<meta http-equiv=”Content material-Kind” content material=”textual content/html; charset=UTF-8″>


Tells the browser to routinely reload the web page after a specified variety of seconds. It will also be used to redirect the person to a different URL after a sure time.

<meta http-equiv=”refresh” content material=”5; url=https://web site.com”>


Signifies {that a} webpage incorporates specific content material.

<meta title=”score” content material=”grownup”>


Controls how the webpage is displayed on cellular units

<meta title=”viewport” content material=”width=device-width, initial-scale=1.0″>

As you possibly can see, there are completely different sorts of meta tags, however probably the most related ones for search engine optimization are:

  • Meta description
  • Meta robots
  • Meta viewport

Let’s have a look at these tags in additional element and see the best way to optimize them.

Be aware: The title tag (usually known as a “meta title”) will not be technically a meta tag, from an HTML perspective. Though it is vital for search engine optimization and is often mentioned alongside different meta tags just like the meta description. Study extra about this tag in our title tags guide or within the temporary part masking “meta titles” beneath.

Meta Description

A meta description summarizes the content material of the webpage for engines like google and customers.

It seems beneath the title on the search engine outcomes web page. 

Like this:

An example of meta description in search results

The code for a meta description tag seems like this:

<meta title="description" content material="This is your meta description"/>

Meta descriptions don’t instantly have an effect on your rankings in Google. However a well-written meta description can encourage customers to click on in your hyperlink as an alternative of scrolling previous it.

Listed below are some ideas that can assist you craft efficient meta descriptions:

  • Preserve them beneath 120 characters
  • Use sentence case
  • Solely embrace your goal key phrase the place it is sensible; keep away from key phrase stuffing
  • Be correct, descriptive, and concise
  • Match search intent
  • Keep away from duplicate meta descriptions in your web site

Semrush’s On Page SEO Checker can examine whether or not your meta descriptions are keyword-optimized. 

Open the instrument and set up a project on your web site.

As soon as full, navigate to the “Optimization Concepts” tab. You’ll see all of your web site pages. Click on on the “# concepts” button.

“Optimization Ideas” tab in On Page SEO Checker

The content material part of the report tells you whether or not your meta description contains your goal key phrase with out key phrase stuffing.

"<meta> tag contains target keywords" and "No keyword stuffing in <meta> tag" results highlighted from the list

Meta Robots Tag

A meta robots tag controls the crawling and indexing conduct of engines like google.

In different phrases, the meta robots tag tells engines like google whether or not you need it to investigate and show your web page in search outcomes.

This tag is current within the <head> part of your HTML and appears like this:

<meta title="robots" content material="observe, index">

Add your directions for engines like google contained in the “content material” attribute.

Some widespread values embrace:

  • Observe: This enables engines like google to crawl hyperlinks you’ve positioned inside your webpages. When you don’t add something to your code, that is the default setting.
  • Nofollow: This instructs engines like google to not crawl hyperlinks on the web page and switch any hyperlink fairness (rating energy).
  • Index: This tells engines like google to index the web page. If the web page is listed, it might seem in search outcomes.
  • Noindex: This instructs engines like google to not add the webpage to their index. Which implies the web page received’t seem in search outcomes.

Ensure you use these values appropriately.

For instance, if in case you have pages with duplicate content, you would possibly use “noindex” parameters on these pages to keep away from any search engine optimization issues.

Additionally, utilizing the “nofollow” worth on internal links will not be typically really useful. As these hyperlinks could not get crawled.

If you wish to examine for those who’ve “nofollowed” any inner hyperlinks by mistake, use Semrush’s Site Audit instrument.

Open the instrument and set up a project for your site.

After that, go to the “Points” tab and seek for “nofollow.”

You’ll see if in case you have any “nofollow” inner hyperlinks.

Results for "nofollow" search in Site Audit's "Issues" tab

If current, evaluation these hyperlinks and take away “nofollow” values in the event that they’ve been added by mistake.

Meta Viewport Tag

A meta viewport tag controls how your webpage seems on cellular and different units.

Its major goal is to regulate the width and scaling of the viewport (i.e., the seen portion of a webpage) to supply an optimum viewing expertise throughout completely different units.

Right here’s what the tag sometimes seems like:

<meta title="viewport" content material="width=device-width, initial-scale=1.0">

It goes into the <head> part of your webpage.

Google has confirmed that it seems on the presence of this tag to substantiate whether or not the web page is mobile-friendly. Which is essential if you wish to rank.

So be sure you add this tag to your webpages.

Meta Title

A meta title (a.okay.a., the “title tag”) tells engines like google what the title of a webpage is.

This title is often displayed on search outcomes pages because the clickable headline of a consequence.

Like this:

An example of meta title in search results

Right here’s an instance of what it seems like in HTML:

<title>Greatest Do-it-yourself Pizza Recipe (1 Hour or In a single day)</title>

Be aware: A meta title will not be technically a meta tag, but it surely features in a way much like web site meta tags, because it supplies metadata concerning the contents of the web page.

Google seems on the title tag of a webpage to know what the web page is about. In order that it might rank the web page appropriately.

Observe these greatest practices when creating meta titles in your web site:

  • Keep away from clickbait titles
  • Use title case
  • Keep away from generic and imprecise titles, like “House” for the homepage
  • Keep away from duplicating titles in your webpages
  • Embody your goal key phrase with out key phrase stuffing
  • Match search intent
  • Ensure that they’re descriptive
  • Preserve them beneath 60 characters

Tip: Semrush’s On Page SEO Checker can examine whether or not your meta titles are keyword-optimized.

By highlighting whether or not you’ve included your goal key phrase in your titles with out key phrase stuffing.

"<title> tag contains target keywords" and "No keyword stuffing in <title> tag" results highlighted from the list

Meta tags are an essential factor in your web site. 

So, be sure you’re utilizing them appropriately.

When you need assistance, the Semrush On Page SEO Checker and Site Audit instruments can examine your implementation. And ensure whether or not you’ve adopted greatest practices.

Sign up to get began.


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