Before shopping for a ebook, folks prefer to get a snapshot of how they’re about to spend a couple of hours studying. They’ll check out the synopsis, the preface, and even the prologue simply to get a way about whether or not they’ll just like the ebook.
Search end result snippets are a lot the identical; they assist folks determine whether or not or not it is smart to take a position the time studying the web page the snippet belongs to.  
The extra descriptive and related a search end result snippet is, the extra probably that folks will click on by and be happy with the web page they land on. Historically, snippets got here from 3 locations:
  1. The content material of the web page
  2. The meta description
  3. DMOZ listings
The content material of the web page is an apparent selection for end result snippets, and  the content material that may be extracted is usually probably the most related to folks’s queries. However, there are occasions when the content material itself is not the very best supply for a snippet. For occasion, when somebody searches for a publishing firm for his or her ebook, the related homepages within the end result set might comprise only some photographs describing the companies and a emblem, and possibly some hyperlinks, none of that are notably helpful for a snippet.
The logical fallback in instances when the content material of a web page does not have a lot textual content material for a search end result snippet is the meta description. This ought to be brief blurbs that describe precisely and exactly the content material in a couple of phrases.
Finally, when a web page does not have a lot textual content material for snippet era and the meta description is lacking, unrelated to the web page, or low high quality, our fallback was DMOZ, often known as The Open Directory Project. For over 10 years, we relied on DMOZ for snippets as a result of the standard of the DMOZ snippets had been typically a lot greater high quality than these  supplied by site owners of their meta description, or had been extra descriptive than what the web page supplied.
With DMOZ now closed, we have stopped utilizing its listings for snippeting, so it is much more necessary that site owners present good meta descriptions, if including extra content material to the web page isn’t an choice.
What makes meta description?
Good meta descriptions are brief blurbs that describe precisely the content material of the web page. They are like a pitch that persuade the person that the web page is precisely what they’re in search of. For extra suggestions, we have now a useful assist middle article on the subject. Remember to guarantee that each your desktop and your cell pages embrace each a title and a meta description.
What are the commonest issues with meta descriptions?
Because meta descriptions are normally seen solely to engines like google and different software program, site owners generally overlook about them, leaving them utterly empty. It’s additionally frequent, for a similar cause, that the identical meta description is used throughout a number of (and generally many) pages. On the flip aspect, it is also comparatively frequent that the outline is totally off-topic, low high quality, or outright spammy. These points tarnish our customers’ search expertise, so we favor to disregard such meta descriptions.
Is there a personality restrict for meta descriptions?
There’s no restrict on how lengthy a meta description could be, however the search end result snippets are truncated as wanted, sometimes to suit the machine width.
What will occur with the “NOODP” robots directive?
With DMOZ (ODP) closed, we stopped counting on its information and thus the NOODP directive is already no-op.
Can I forestall Google from utilizing the web page contents as snippet?
You can forestall Google from producing snippets altogether by specifying the “nosnippet” robots directive. There’s no solution to forestall utilizing web page contents as snippet whereas permitting different sources.
As at all times, you probably have questions, ask within the boards or discover us on Twitter!

Posted by Gary, Search Team

This article sources data from Google Webmaster Central Blog