The title says it all.
I am wondering whether the standard summary Hubpages recommend is good enough or whether one should write a good summary for each hub.
well, if you don't write a summary text the first 30-35 words of you hub will be automatically taken as the meta description. So if you write first couple of lines carefully keeping your keywords in mind you can avoid writing a summary text.
But make sure you haven't set an image on top of the page as image caption will also form a part of the summary when taken automatically.
I've recently been testing this on a couple of hubs which had reached page one of Google for keywords I was targeting - one was in fact at number 1 for a competitive term. Since providing the summary text/description myself and attempting to make it short and snappy the hub has dropped in search to number 3 or 4 dependent on day and location etc. From an seo point of view this shouldn't be the case I know but with Google's algorithm changing all the time and some arguing that traffic plays a part in SERPs I wonder...
Now, the hub had been topping search for over 6 months and nothing else has been done to it so from my experience I would say to leave well alone - let the search engines drag a description in from your title, and content.
LOL Neil the lesson here should be if you're on top already, DO Nothing. If you're hub is not on page one of Google for your targeted keywords then tweak away.
If you're first paragraph contains your targeted keywords then you really don't need a unique summary. If you made the "no keywords in the opening paragraph newbie to SEO blunder" Then the unique summary would be a good place to start tweaking.
The calculated summary will take anything that is in the first capsule so if there is anything there other than text then you need to work on the unique summary.
I wasn't aware that we could do our own summary. Thanks for bringing the topic to our attention.
I'm too lazy, but if you are not, you probably should do that. Automated picks aren't always the best.
I usually custom write the summary. Occasionally its close to my first sentence but not always.
wow. this is going to be stupid...there is a standard summary on our hubs? I had no idea..I need to go look at mine again.....they may need editing. and I was so happy I just finally figured out the spell check, now this?
I just learned about the summary a week or two ago after reading a hub by WryLilt. For some of my hubs the first few sentences summed them up well, but others really benefitted from a customized summary. It is super easy to write your own summary, you just need to know where to click to get to it. Here's the hub that taught me how, plus it teaches a few other basics that are good to know, if you don't already know them.
http://hubpages.com/hub/Quick-Tips-For- … n-Hubpages
I don't think that link is working. I'll try again. I am really bad with this type of thing.
http://hubpages.com/hub/Quick-Tips-For- … n-Hubpages
cool. thanks to you and wry lilt. always something new to learn, huh?
Oh yes, and I have tons more to learn, slowly but surely! I am really thankful for all the nice hubbers who have helped me out!
I usually customized my summary: composing few sentences which contain the keywords.
I don't always do this... but I think it's a good idea. Especially if your first paragraph is more of an attention grabber. It may not have the keywords that someone searching for that topic is looking for. Look at the summary from how a web surfer would see it. If the auto one would help a reader click on your hub, then it's fine. If not... write something that will help them decide.
Now I should probably go back and practice what I just preached! Thanks for the reminder!
When I remember, I like to create a customized summary that tells the searcher that my hub has pictures and videos. Also, my first paragraph does not always include all the key words, and is often a bit too generic.
I am so embarrassed. I used to be able to write my own summaries, which I liked better than the ones that were automatically generated. I have lost that capability. What am I doing wrong?
I also can't generate slide shows anymore.
I had been creating custom descriptions as well but the option seemed to disappear a few weeks ago. It sounds like maybe this feature has been disabled?
It is still there. While in edit, look off to the right - one of the options is to change the summary, set the group, etc. Look hard - it took me a few minutes to find it again this morning.
Slide shows - I haven't seen a change. You're aware it takes at least 5 pics to make a slide show?
thanks--I found it again. the summary feature used to be in the left upper corner, now it's on the right. thank you! thank you! thank you!
You're welcome. It took me a while after the change to find it as well.
It is hard to find, it's a small link marked "summary".
I nearly always write my own. Occasionally the first few words will fit well, but that "introduction" to the hub often isn't what will bring a reader to it in the first place. Or so I think much of the time.
I write a unique summary, but often use the text in my first capsule. I like to control exactly what goes in the summary though.
I always recommend crafting your own summary. It is what people see first about your hub when browsing HubPages. It also forms the "meta description" which search engines often (but not always) use as the site description on their search results pages. It doesn't directly affect your rankings, since the engines long ago realized how easy that is to game. However, it can affect your click through, aka the likelihood people will click on your hub.
Saleheensblog made a good point about image descriptions being used in the automatic summaries. When browsing other hubs, I've been confused by phrase fragments in the summaries which I only later realized were the image captions. It can actually make the hub look spammy, like it's just a lump of keyphrases strung together!
The summary is very important... use your keywords in it, just like you do in your title. Yes, I create a summary for my hubs rather than relying on the standard, though in my case the standard would do because I always use keywords in the first sentence of my hubs.
Thanks everybody for the replies.
I have updated my hubs with the following:
- Custom description unless was already on top of Google
- Make Amazon store in blue instead of white
- Add News capsule wherever possible (use broader keyword if needed)
- Interlink more hubs (this is a lot of work IMO)
Hope I am now set for these hubs!
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