Eric Wei: From Student To $100M

+ Meta Descriptions That Drive Traffic

February 7th Edition

Leveling Up

Welcome back to Leveling Up.

Here’s what I’ve prepared for you today:

  • How Eric Wei went from student to raising $100M

  • 5 underrated life hacks

  • How to write meta descriptions that drive traffic

  • And more

- Eric Siu :)

Let’s Link

Here are the top 5 most helpful links to check out today:

  1. 👻 How Super Bowl advertisers are now focusing on Snapchat

  2. 📈 How to build a $10M SEO agency

  3. 🤖 Big Tech puts AI at the center of another earnings season

  4. 💰 Why you’re supposed to feel overwhelmed when learning

  5. ❤️ It’s not too late to make 2024 the best year of your life

Grab a FREE Marketing Plan For Your Brand

Tell us a little bit about your company, and our marketing experts will put together a detailed plan to hit your growth goals—100% free.

Interview Highlights

Eric Wei: From Student To $100M

Eric Wei, co-founder of Karat, discusses the challenges that creators face in the financial ecosystem and how Karat aims to provide financial services tailored to their needs. He also talks about the evolving landscape of the creator economy, the need for creators to experiment with new formats, and the importance of building deeper engagement with their audience.

Here are the highlights:

  • 💰 The pressure of raising over $100 million means that failure could result in people losing their money, trust, and jobs.

  • 💰 A smarter way to underwrite is by looking at cashflow-based underwriting and leading indicators such as social media engagement for businesses.

  • 💼 Eric Wei's journey from working at Instagram to starting his own company involved cold messaging and hustling to connect with creators and clients.

  • 💰 Successful creators on Karat must have the mental fortitude to make risky decisions and avoid burnout in order to stand out and take their content to the next level.

  • 🔥 The fact that Alexandra Botez continued to grind and play online for hours for months, despite the failure of her startup, demonstrates her resilience and dedication to her craft.

  • 🚀 Taking risks and going all in on a successful marketing campaign can lead to exponential growth and success.

Deep Dive

From Good to Great: How to Write Meta Descriptions That Drive Traffic

In the vast expanse of the digital universe, where billions of websites vie for attention, standing out is paramount. Among all strategies to enhance online visibility, one often underestimated yet crucial element plays a significant role: the meta description.

Seems easy enough, right? Just sum up the post or page. Wrong.

From understanding Google’s guidelines to the common mistakes most people make to the winning formula for better CTRs, this article aims to equip you with the knowledge to transform your meta descriptions into powerful tools for online success.

What’s the Big Deal About Meta Descriptions?

A meta description is an HTML attribute that provides a brief and concise summary of a webpage’s content, used by search engines to display as a snippet in search results, influencing click-through rates.

It appears directly beneath the title of a page in the SERPs:

Though they do not directly influence search rankings, their importance cannot be overstated.

A well-crafted meta description is an elevator pitch to potential visitors, providing a glimpse into the page’s content.

It’s the first interaction users have with your content in the search results, making it a pivotal factor in their decision to click through to your website.

The relevance of meta-descriptions extends beyond mere summaries. They are a strategic tool to increase CTRs, thus driving more traffic to your site. In an era where attention is a scarce commodity, a compelling meta description can set your page apart, enticing users to choose your content over countless others.

Moreover, in the context of SEO, meta descriptions offer an opportunity to reinforce the keywords and themes of your content, aligning with the search intent of your target audience.

Keep in mind: If you don’t write a meta description for your post or page, search engines like Google will automatically generate one by extracting a snippet from the page’s content that they consider most relevant to the user’s search query. However, this automated snippet may not always accurately represent the page’s content or highlight its most compelling points.

The Anatomy of an Effective Meta Description

At its core, an effective meta description serves as a concise summary of a webpage’s content, but its true value lies far beyond a simple description. It’s a strategic tool designed to attract clicks from search engine results pages (SERPs) and drive traffic to your website.

Writing an irresistible – i.e. click-worthy – meta description requires understanding its key components and the role they play in engaging potential visitors. The anatomy of an effective meta description contains the following elements.

1) Make It Clear and Relevant

The meta description should clearly state what the page is about, using language that resonates with your target audience. It must be directly relevant to the page's content, ensuring that once users click through, they find what they were promised.

This relevance not only improves the user experience but also reduces bounce rates, signaling to search engines that your content is valuable.

Example: “Explore the ultimate guide to beginner yoga poses: step-by-step instructions, benefits, and tips to enhance your practice. Start your yoga journey with confidence today.”

2) Use Actionable Language

Using actionable language such as “Discover,” “Learn,” “Grab,” or “Get” encourages users to take action. This type of language transforms the meta description from a passive summary into an engaging invitation, offering users a clear benefit or solution to their search query.

Example: “Discover top strategies for effective time management and boost your productivity today. Learn how to prioritize tasks and achieve your goals with our expert tips.”

3) Include the Focus Keyword

Including targeted keywords in your meta description is crucial for SEO. It helps convey to search engines what your page is about, improving the chances of your page appearing for relevant searches.

Moreover, when users see their search query highlighted in your meta description in the SERPs, it increases the likelihood of them clicking through to your site.

Example: “Looking for easy and delicious vegan recipes? Find hundreds of plant-based meals, from breakfast to dinner, that will satisfy your cravings and support a healthy lifestyle.”

4) Show Your Unique Value Proposition

Your meta description should highlight what makes your page stand out from your competitors’ offerings. Whether it’s an exclusive offer, a unique insight or a compelling fact, clearly articulate what users will gain or learn from the page in order to convince them that your page is worth their time over others.

Example: “Unlock the secrets to successful remote work with our exclusive e-book. Get insights into creating a productive home office, balancing work-life and thriving in a digital environment.”

5) Keep the Length Short

While search engines typically truncate meta descriptions after about 155-160 characters, the goal is to convey your message as effectively as possible within this limit. A well-crafted meta description is concise yet powerful, delivering its message within the space constraints.

Example: “Master the art of French cooking with easy-to-follow recipes and culinary tips. Impress your guests with classic French dishes that bring the taste of France to your table.”

6) End with a Bang! (i.e. CTA)

Ending your meta description with a call to action is essential to encourage users to click through to your website from search results. A strong CTA motivates the user to take the next step, whether it’s to learn more, make a purchase, sign up for a service or any other action you desire them to take.

Example: “Explore the latest trends in sustainable fashion and join our eco-friendly community. Shop now to make a difference with your style choices and contribute to a greener planet.”

Incorporating these elements into your meta descriptions can transform them from overlooked snippets into compelling reasons for users to visit your website. Remember, the goal is not just to inform but to entice, offering a snapshot of the value your page promises to deliver.

Google’s Meta Description Guidelines

Understanding Google’s guidelines for meta descriptions is essential for SEO success. Why? Because 62% of the time the search engine will rewrite a meta description that doesn’t do the job:

These guidelines offer valuable insights into crafting meta descriptions that not only appeal to users but also comply with search engine standards, thus enhancing your content’s visibility and effectiveness.

Here’s a breakdown of key recommendations from Google and how to apply them to your meta descriptions:

  • Write Unique Meta Descriptions for Each Page: Google emphasizes the importance of unique meta descriptions for each page. This practice prevents user confusion and ensures that each description accurately reflects the page’s content. It’s important to make your site more informative and relevant to users’ searches.

  • Avoid Duplicate Meta Descriptions: Duplicate meta descriptions across multiple pages can dilute your SEO efforts. Google advises against using identical or very similar descriptions for different pages. Unique descriptions improve the user experience by providing specific and relevant information about each page’s content.

  • Keep It Concise: While Google doesn’t enforce a strict character limit, it’s recommended to keep meta descriptions concise, typically around 155-160 characters. This length ensures that the entire description is visible in search results, avoiding cut-offs that can leave important information hidden.

  • Make It Informative and Interesting: Your meta description should offer a clear and engaging summary of the page’s content. Incorporating relevant keywords and a call-to-action can make the description more appealing to users, encouraging clicks.

  • Avoid Non-Alphanumeric Characters: Google suggests avoiding the use of non-standard characters (like emojis) in meta descriptions, as they may not display correctly in search results or could be stripped out entirely. Sticking to alphanumeric characters ensures your message is accurately conveyed.

Remember, the goal of a meta description is to act as a marketing snippet for your page. When crafted carefully, it can significantly improve your site’s CTR, driving more traffic and engagement.

Just want someone to do all the work for you? Single Grain’s SEO copywriting experts can help!👇

Common Mistakes to Avoid in Meta Descriptions

Crafting the perfect meta description is as much about avoiding pitfalls as it is about implementing best practices. Here are some common mistakes to avoid, ensuring your meta descriptions are optimized for both search engines and user engagement:

Overstuffing with Keywords:

  • Mistake: Cramming the meta description with too many keywords, sacrificing readability and coherence.

  • Example: “Buy cheap online shoes, best online shoes, affordable online shoes, online shoe store, top online shoes, online shoes for sale, online shoe deals.”

  • Fix: Aim for a natural incorporation of keywords that enhances readability.

Using Duplicate Meta Descriptions:

  • Mistake: Repeating the same meta description across multiple pages, diminishing the uniqueness and relevance of each page.

  • Example meta description for multiple pages: “Welcome to Our Store – Find the best products at unbeatable prices. Shop now for great deals.”

  • Fix: Tailor each description to the specific content and goals of its respective page.

Being Too Vague or Generic:

  • Mistake: Crafting a meta description that is too broad or uses generic phrases, failing to convey the specific content of the page.

  • Example: “Click here to learn more about our products and services. We offer a wide range of solutions for your needs.”

  • Fix: Be specific and offer a compelling reason for users to visit your page.

Exceeding the Character Limit:

  • Mistake: Writing a meta description that is too long, resulting in it being truncated and losing critical information.

  • Example: “Discover our comprehensive guide to gardening, where we cover everything from basic plant care and landscape design to advanced gardening techniques and sustainability practices, ensuring you have all the resources to…”

  • Fix: Keep your descriptions to 155-160 characters to make sure the entire message is displayed.

Neglecting the Call to Action (CTA):

  • Mistake: Omitting a clear and compelling call to action, missing the opportunity to encourage users to click through to the website.

  • Example: “Read our article on the top 10 healthy eating habits. It covers various aspects of nutrition and dietary tips.”

  • Fix: End your description with a strong CTA that encourages users to take the next step.

Writing Meta Descriptions for Better CTRs Step by Step

Now that you have a solid idea of what to do and mistakes to avoid, let’s walk you through how to create meta descriptions that not only resonate with your audience but also drive traffic to your site.

Step 1: Identify Your Target Keywords

  • Action: Start with keyword research to identify the primary keyword for your page. Use tools like Google Keyword Planner or Semrush to find keywords that are relevant to your content and have a high search volume.

  • Tip: Focus on long-tail keywords as they are less competitive and more specific to user intent.

Step 2: Understand Your Audience’s Search Intent:

  • Action: Analyze the search intent behind your target keywords. Is the user looking for information, trying to make a purchase or seeking a specific website?

  • Tip: Tailor your meta description to match this intent, providing a clear answer or solution.

Step 3: Craft Your Message:

  • Action: Begin writing your meta description, ensuring that it’s between 150-160 characters. Incorporate your target keyword naturally and address the user’s search intent.

  • Tip: Use the active voice and action verbs to make your message more engaging and direct.

Step 4: Highlight the Value Proposition:

  • Action: Clearly articulate what makes your content valuable and unique. Mention any unique benefits, exclusive insights or offers.

  • Tip: Put yourself in the user’s shoes and think about what distinguishes your page from others – i.e. why a user should click on your link.

Step 5: Include a Call to Action:

  • Action: End your meta description with a compelling call to action. Encourage users to “Learn More,” “Get Started” or “Discover” what your page has to offer.

  • Tip: A strong CTA can significantly increase your CTR by motivating users to take the next step.

Step 6: Review and Edit:

  • Action: Review your meta description for clarity, conciseness and relevance. Make sure it aligns with the content on your page and the user’s search intent.

  • Tip: Sometimes it’s hard to see things objectively, so ask a colleague to review it or use tools like Grammarly to check for errors and readability.

Step 7: Implement and Monitor:

  • Action: Implement your new meta description on the relevant page and monitor its performance over time using Google Search Console.

  • Tip: Look for changes in CTR and rankings. Be prepared to tweak your meta description based on performance data.

Now let’s put this all into a formula you can use.

Formula: [Target Keyword] + [Value Proposition] + [Call to Action]

Let’s break down each element of the formula:

  • [Target Keyword]: Start with your primary keyword or phrase to make sure the meta description is relevant to search queries. This helps with SEO and ensures that your content is matched with the right audience.

  • [Value Proposition]: Clearly articulate what makes your content unique or valuable. This could be an answer to a question, a solution to a problem or what the user will learn. Highlighting the benefit or value encourages users to click.

  • [Call to Action]: Conclude with a strong, action-oriented prompt that encourages people to take the next step. Phrases like “Learn More” and “Discover” are effective, but it doesn’t have to be that simple. It can also be “Check out these successful Facebook clothing ads” or “Here’s how to use semantic SEO to improve your site’s rankings.”

Example 1:

  • Page Topic: Easy Vegetarian Recipes

  • Meta Description: “Discover easy vegetarian recipes that will delight your taste buds and nourish your body. Dive into our collection for simple, healthy meals. Start cooking now!”


  • [Target Keyword]: “easy vegetarian recipes”

  • [Value Proposition]: “delight your taste buds and nourish your body with simple, healthy meals”

  • [Call to Action]: “Start cooking now!”

Example 2:

  • Page Topic: Digital Marketing Strategies for Small Businesses

  • Meta Description: “Boost your small business with cutting-edge digital marketing strategies. Learn to maximize online visibility and engagement. Grow your brand today!”


  • [Target Keyword]: “digital marketing strategies for small businesses”

  • [Value Proposition]: “Boost your small business with cutting-edge strategies to maximize online visibility and engagement”

  • [Call to Action]: “Grow your brand today!”

Example 3:

  • Page Topic: Beginner Yoga Poses Guide

  • Meta Description: “Embark on your yoga journey with our beginner’s guide to yoga poses. Achieve flexibility, strength, and inner peace. Start your transformation today!”


  • [Target Keyword]: “beginner yoga poses guide”

  • [Value Proposition]: “Embark on your yoga journey to achieve flexibility, strength, and inner peace”

  • [Call to Action]: “Start your transformation today!”

Example 4:

  • Page Topic: Project Management Software for Remote Teams

  • Meta Description: “Streamline your remote team’s workflow with our project management software. Enhance collaboration, efficiency, and project tracking. Try it free now!”


  • [Target Keyword]: “project management software for remote teams”

  • [Value Proposition]: “Streamline your team’s workflow to enhance collaboration, efficiency, and project tracking”

  • [Call to Action]: “Try it free now!”

This formula ensures that your meta descriptions are concise, targeted, and designed to drive clicks.

Last Word on Writing Meta Descriptions

Writing compelling meta descriptions is a critical aspect of SEO that goes beyond mere keyword optimization to genuinely capture your target audience’s attention.

By understanding the anatomy of an effective meta description, adhering to Google’s guidelines, avoiding common pitfalls, and applying a practical formula, you can significantly enhance your website’s visibility and click-through rates. 

Remember, the perfect meta description balances SEO with user engagement, acting as a bridge between search engines and human readers. It’s about making that all-important first impression count, enticing users to click through with a clear, concise, and compelling summary of what they can expect to find on your page.

If you’re ready to level up your content with engaging, keyword-rich copy that drives substantial traffic growth, Single Grain’s SEO copywriting experts can help!

Turbocharge Your Business Growth With An Elite Private Network

  • Fill out this form to apply

  • Leveling Up Founders is an invite-only community for the top founders in media, marketing, and business.

  • Next event: Aug 5-7, 2024 in Beverly Hills, CA

Timely Tweets

🎤 40,000 newsletter subscribers in 10 months

😄 How to wake up feeling ready to conquer the world

✍️ 5 underrated life hacks

What did you think of this newsletter?

Feedback helps us improve!

Login or Subscribe to participate in polls.

To your growth
- Eric Siu

Ps: We have a ton of free content to help your business grow: