Why Google has reduced the snippet length to 160/130 characters

Earlier this week, Google’s Danny Sullivan confirmed that the average description length on Google is not much shorter than it was with Google’s 300 characters experiment. The current average snippet length is 160 characters on desktop and 130 characters on mobile.

better meta description tags

Google gave some further information on why they changed the snippet length

On Twitter, Google’s John Mueller explained why the search result snippets are shorter now. Basically, Google is testing different things and they use the results that work best for them.

Just get to the point

Google still shows search results with longer snippets. Especially for non-commercial queries, there are some longer snippet descriptions on the result page. The length of result snippets is dynamic.

It’s not important how many characters your meta description has. It is important that your meta description gets to the point. Write short and concise meta descriptions that make people click on your result on the search results page. Google’s Danny Sullivan confirms this:

Although there is no maximum snippet length, it might be a good idea to limit your meta descriptions to 130 characters if you want to be sure that the full description gets displaye on Google’s result pages. Remember that Google will only show the meta description of the page if it is relevant to the search query.

Optimize your meta descriptions

Among many other things, the website audit tool in SEOprofiler checks the meta descriptions on your web pages. The website audit tool helps you to optimize many elements of your web pages. You can create your free account here:

Check your pages

Tom Cassy

Tom Cassy is the CEO of SEOprofiler. He blogs about search engine optimization and website marketing topics at “http://blog.seoprofiler.com”.