Metadata in regards to most websites is defined as follows:
The <meta> tag provides metadata about
the HTML document. Metadata will not be displayed on the page,
but will be machine parsable. (Search engines can see it.)
Meta elements are typically used to
specify page description, keywords, author of the document, last
modified, and other metadata.
The metadata can be used by browsers
(how to display content or reload page), search engines
(keywords), or other web services.
Meta tags like titles and descriptions should be written to
please the user as well as the search engines. Image meta
tags are also parsable and hence it is important to include
them when optimizing your images and video. Meta tags used
improperly can have a negative effect on your ranking. They
are not the end all be all when it comes to establishing a
high ranking, but a crucial part of the processes that are
required to get your site ranked.
Page titles and descriptions should be written to
effectively attract both users and engines. Much like a
print ad, a call to action using buzz words without
overstuffing with keywords, yet strategically written to
promote organic ranking will generally yield the best
Keywords- Keywords are not utilized any longer. We still
have small business owners who dabble in DIY SEO who believe
keywords must be written like they were back in the "old
days." The engines do not consider keyword meta tags, except
for Bing, who actually utilizes them to eliminate spam. If
your site is packed full of keyword meta data, you should
eliminate or at least reduce them if they are "spammy."