I've submitted my sitemap.xml file to Google Search Console and my website listing looked fine for a while but then suddenly (a day or two later) the listing no longer contained the metadata.

    <meta name="description" content="Greystone delivers optimized property tax savings, successful tax appeals, consolidated tax reporting & budgeting for diverse commercial real estate portfolios.">
    <meta name="keywords" content="greystone, property tax, commercial real estate">
    <meta name="robots" content="index, follow">

    <title>Greystone Property Tax Advisors</title>

The sitemap file:

    <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
    <urlset xmlns="http://www.sitemaps.org/schemas/sitemap/0.9">
    <url>
      <loc>https://greystoneproptax.com/</loc>
    </url>
    </urlset>

I've tried requesing indexing in Google Search Console and that works temporarily but then the listing goes back to the version without the metadata.

  • the listing no longer contained the metadata - what does it mean? I see all metadata in the source code of the page and in the SERP snippet. – Evgeniy Dec 6 at 15:00
  • 1
    Also, feel free to kill that "keywords" tag. It is absolutely useless to search engines. – Henry Visotski Dec 6 at 15:02
  • @Evgeniy the Google listing looks ok right now because I just manually requested indexing in the Search Console. In the past when I've done this, after a couple of days the listing changes to something like: "Greystone greystoneproptax.com We work with a select group of owners of diverse commercial property portfolios to deliver optimized real estate tax savings" which is just pulling the meta description copy from the body of the page. – zzMzz Dec 6 at 15:15
  • Google does not always use what you suggest. They may think your description does not match well with what the searcher is looking for, and decide to use some content from the page instead. – Tony McCreath yesterday
up vote 0 down vote accepted

The listing does contain your meta description in Google (See SERP), however the issue is that Google is indexing https://greystoneproptax.com/ and https://greystoneproptax.com/index.html separately.

You may be able to remedy this with a canonical tag pointing to "/". I would also recommend implementing a URL rewrite/301 redirect so you don't have two different ways to access the same page.

  • is this correct? <link rel="canonical" href="/" /> – zzMzz Dec 6 at 16:32
  • Yes, that should instruct the bots to index / instead of / and /index.html. The change won't happen overnight, but it should remedy the duplicate indexing – tshimkus Dec 6 at 19:52
  • thanks for the help! Much appreciated. – zzMzz Dec 6 at 22:09

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