Meta tags are little pieces of HTML code that describes a website. People that visit a website cannot see the meta tags because they are only written for the spiders and other robots crawling along the site, gathering information for the search engines. Spiders can read meta tags in both HTML and XHTML.
While there are several different kinds of meta tags, the two most important ones are the title tag and the description tag. The title tag is the name of the website or page, so it needs to be keyword rich, interesting, and informative, while still giving a bit of personal flair. The title tag is what is displayed by the search engines in blue, and is what is clicked on to reach the website. The title tag aids in determining rank. It is this tag that is important for SEO directly. The description tag is what is written under the title tag displayed by the search engines. This tag describes what the page or site is about. While this tag does not directly influence ranking and SEO, it is what tells a potential visitor that they have reached the right website, and convinces them to click on the title. If you’re going to outsource your SEO works to a seo company, learn more here.
If a website does not have a description tag, a spider will reach into the page, and pull out a snippet of information, and display that information instead. The spider is not looking to increase SEO or to pull in visitors, so it will just grab anything to show what information is on the page. This snippet may not be beneficial, and so the description tag should not be left to chance.
At one time, it was a good idea to make a list of meta keywords tags, but Google and other search engines just ignore them. They offer no real value to the website or SEO. Other kinds of meta tags are less important, but can provide some bits of value to the website. Ultimately, not using meta tags will not keep a website from being located in a search engine’s database. Rather, using meta tags will simply add SEO value and ranking to the website. The more a Webmaster can do to improve SEO and rank, the better, so the use of meta tags is a piece that should not be forgotten or ignored when building and maintaining a website.