A bit about Meta Tags

One of the most common mistakes when adding meta data to webpages is using the same tags on every page across the website. While some tags are probably going to be the same (ie. charset, language etc.), the title, description and keyword tags should be unique to the page. The title and description tags are looked at by search engine bots and used in ranking. If they see the same tags across the site, sometimes they will assume the content of the page is the same also. At the very least it's a wasted opportunity to not only accurately describe that pages topic to the bots, but to the search engine users as well.

Another common mistake is "over stuffing", by that I mean trying to cram in keywords repeatedly. When deciding on the title and description tag it's important to think of it from a searchers perspective. What makes you choose which site you visit out of the 10 first shown? I'm betting it isn't one with a title that looks like:
A better choice for a title might simply be "Red Widgets" with a clear description below about the widgets available.

If you have suggestions or comments about this meta tag generator, please Let me know.

Character Set

A character set meta tag is required not only for your webpages to validate, but it's important because if a web browser can't detect the character encoding used in a document, visitors may end up with an unreadable page.

If you aren't sure which charset tag is right and your site is in English, try iso-8859-1. For a detailed explanation, read the W3C's Character sets & encodings tutorial.

Website Language Tag

This is one of the less often used meta tags. The W3C very strongly suggests using for accessibility for speech synthesizers and Braille translators (required in the UK). They also say it's important for spelling and grammar tools. To learn more, the W3C's page, Why use the language attribute gives a great amount of helpful information.

Webpage or Document Title Tag

This is the title that shows at the very top of the browser window and on search engine results. This tag is a very important part of your online promotion, since search engines often weigh this heavily to decide your ranking, it's also what searchers read first to decide whether or not to click your link instead of the others in the search results.

The recommended length is not more than 64 characters, and well less if possible. Keep it short and use keywords that are descriptive of the pages contents. Generally the "less is more" approach works well here.

characters written.
64 characters maximum left.

Meta Description

This is what will often show as your page description in the search results. Again, try to accurately describe the content of the page. Recommended length is no more than 256 characters. Many search engines will show even less, Google for example cuts off the description at around 156 characters, Yahoo and MSN both accept much longer descriptions.

characters written.
256 characters maximum left.

Meta Keywords Tag

The keyword meta tag is no longer used by most search engines, but if you'd like to include it for the few that do.. here it is. Try to limit this to a maximum of 20 words or phrases, separated by commas. ie: keyword, key phrase,

Again, these should be descriptive words that reflect the content of the page you're adding these meta tags to, not your entire site.

NOODP - Opt out of DMOZ Title & Description

This is one of the newest meta tags. If you're listed in the Open Directory Project (often called DMOZ or ODP) and you want your meta title and description shown in the search results instead of what the ODP editor chose, you can add this tag to your webpage's head. Currently this is only supported by MSN Search and Google.

Note, this will not stop search engines from using on-page snippets as your description.

NOYDIR - Opt out of Yahoo! Directory Title & Descriptions

Another new one as of Feb 28 2007, the Yahoo! directory now lets you choose if you want to use your own meta description and title as opposed to the one listed in their directory. Again, this will only change how your site is listed in the search result pages, not change the directory listing you may already have.

Copyright Holder

An optional meta tag that is not used very often. If you want to add this to your webpages meta tags anyway, simply fill in the name of the copyright holder for the content of your web page. This can be a personal name or company. Leave it blank to skip it.

Controlling Search Engine Bots

Search engine robots will crawl the web and index pretty much anything they get their hands on. If there's a page you don't want indexed here's how. I've left out the "index, follow" robots meta tag since that's the bots default behavior, adding it to your webpages won't encourage them to index if they haven't yet.


If everything above looks good, click the button below to generate your new tags.

Here's Your Completed Meta Tags

That's it, now just copy and paste the generated meta tags in the box below into the head of your webpage (after <head> and before </head> <body>) and your website is ready to be published.