The Open Directory Project or DMOZ DescriptionsBy: Barry Welford
August 6th, 2008
Keep the description of your site brief - no longer than 25-30 words. A well-written, objective description will make listing your site easier.Another place where this word Description is used is in the Description Meta tag, which is part of the Head section of any web page. If the Description Meta tag is provided then this will often be used by Google in preparing the explanatory snippet, which is provided in any keyword query report page. Since a good snippet may channel prospects to your website, it is worth putting a little effort into getting it right. Google in its Webmaster Help Center offers the following advice on creating effective Description Meta tags.
- Write in complete sentences and/or descriptive phrases using proper grammar, punctuation and correct spelling.
- Avoid using promotional language and strings of key words and search terms.
Include clearly tagged facts in the description. The meta description doesnâ€™t just have to be in sentence format; itâ€™s also a great place to include structured data about the page. For example, news or blog postings can list the author, date of publication, or byline information. This can give potential visitors very relevant information that might not be displayed in the snippet otherwise. Similarly, product pages might have the key bits of information - price, age, manufacturer - scattered throughout a page. A good meta description can bring all this data together. For example, the following meta description provides detailed information about a book. <META NAME=â€ťDescriptionâ€ť CONTENT=â€ťAuthor: A.N. Author, Illustrator: P. Picture, Category: Books, Price: $17.99, Length: 784 pagesâ€ť> In this example, information is clearly tagged and separated.This clearly shows the conflict. DMOZ requires sentences. Google prefers tagged information. The content of the description meta tag should be written the way Google prefers it. To be absolutely sure that Google uses what is offered in the meta tag rather than the description that may exist in the Open Directory Project, the following meta tag can be used: <meta name=â€ťrobotsâ€ť content=â€ťnoodpâ€ť> This prevents all search engines (that support the meta tag) from using the Open Directory Project information in any way. To specifically prevent Google from using that information as a pageâ€™s description, you can use the following: <meta name=â€ťgooglebotâ€ť content=â€ťnoodpâ€ť> Comments
About the Author: Barry Welford, President of SMM Internet Marketing Consultants works with business owners and senior management on Internet Marketing strategy and action plans to grow their companies. He is a moderator at the Cre8asite Forums and writes on current issues on the Internet and on the Mobile Web in three blogs, BPWrap, StayGoLinks and The Other Bloke's Blog.