Some indexing engines look for META elements that define a comma-separated list of keywords/phrases, or that give a short description. Search engines may present these keywords as the result of a search. The value of the name attribute sought by a search engine is not defined by this specification.
Search engines may index the META Description Tag found in the
<head></head> section of your web pages. These indexing search engines may present the content (referred to as a Snippet) of your META Description Tag as the result of a search query.
<meta name="description" content="Some search engines will index the META Description Tag. These indexing search engines may present the content of your meta description tag as the result of a search query.">
The above meta description tag example may produce a search result that looks like this...
META Description Tag - Metadata Elements
Some search engines will index the META Description Tag. These indexing search engines may present the content of your meta description tag as the result of a search query.
www.seoconsultants.com/meta-tags/description.htm - 20k - Cached
The hyperlinked portion of the above description is referred to as the TITLE element and is one of the most important elements of your web pages'
<title>META Description Tag - Metadata Elements</title>
To avoid truncation by the search engines in their SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages), your META Description Tag should be concise, within 140 to 200 characters. Truncation will vary depending on the search engine and the number of characters displayed in the search results. Yahoo! recommends limiting your meta tags to no more than 256 characters.
Admin Note: The META Description Tag may mirror the opening paragraph of your page. View the source code of this page for an example. The META Description should be specific to the page it is referring to and contain keywords and keyword phrases found in the page title, page heading and first one or two blocks of relevant page content.
The META Description Tag is one of the many Metadata Elements that may appear in the
<head></head> section of your web pages.