We recently found that our website doesn't show the meta description as we want when googling the results. Instead, it shows the content from the web page itself.

Some people say it's because Google has its own preference. But I went through a few competitors' websites, they do similar things like us, but their meta descriptions are shown correctly.

So, I looked into the code and found that in our code, we used "meta property=description". But they used "meta name=description".

Is there a difference between these two? Does Google only recognize "meta name=description"?

Here's one of our web pages: https://nftgo.io/whale-tracking/trade


1 Answer 1


Is there a difference between these two?

Indeed - IIUC, only the attribute "name" is valid HTML, eg: <meta name="..." content="...">.


Note that the Google documentation Meta tags that Google understands specifies:

<meta name="description" content="A description of the page" />

The use of property is not straight HTML, but part of the Open Graph spec, an RDFa extension to the HTML spec, which allows Open Graph tags like:

<html prefix="og: https://ogp.me/ns#">
  <title>The Rock (1996)</title>
  <meta property="og:title" content="The Rock">

RDFa or Resource Description Framework in Attributes is a W3C Recommendation that adds a set of attribute-level extensions to HTML, XHTML...


Rich Snippets

Some people say it's because Google has its own preference.

Google will consume a valid meta description, but may display a snippet deemed more useful to an individual user:

A snippet is the description or summary part of search result on Google Search and other properties (for example, Google News). Google uses a number of different sources to automatically determine the appropriate snippet, including descriptive information in the meta description tag for each page. We may also use information found on the page, or create rich results based on markup and content on the page. https://developers.google.com/search/docs/advanced/appearance/snippet

(emphasis added)

Related Validators

(it seems that the <html prefix=og:... is no longer required for HTML5 to validate, and indeed, use of <meta property... doesn't fail validation at all! I'm not sure why...)

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