Recently, Google has decreased the length of search results snippets. Earlier on Google said that writing Meta descriptions doesn’t change with longer search snippets. Also, Webmasters were told that there is no need for publishers to suddenly expand their Meta description tags.
Danny Sullivan of Google wrote, “Our search snippets are now shorter. He added that they are now slightly longer than a change made in December.”
He also said, “There is no fixed length for snippets. Length may vary.”
Google isn’t going to state a new maximum length for the snippets because the snippets are generated dynamically.
As per the RankRanger’s tracker tool, the new average length of the description snippet field on desktop is around 160 characters. While earlier it was 300 plus characters and mobile characters for the search result snippets are reduced to an average of 130 characters.
However, Google suggested to not focus too much on these, as many of the snippets Google chooses are dynamic anyway and not pulled from your Meta descriptions.
There might be a number of reasons as to why Google may have taken this decision, such as –
- A number of webmasters may not have wanted to scale through their entire site, to change the Meta descriptions which holds no value for SEO Onsite optimization. With many being dynamically generated, this could have been a waste of time for many businesses.
- Also, this could be a sign that Google is looking to focus more closely on schema data and other more beneficial factors in search engines, which could remove Meta descriptions altogether in the future.