Many search engines query and use listings/descriptions for their own results. If you have had any kind of dealing with DMOZ, more than likely there is one or two horror stories included that strikes a nerve. Still today, being listed in DMOZ is a vital step to getting better visibility in the search results. Even Google themselves mirrors their directory after the listings in DMOZ.

One of the engines that use DMOZ site descriptions for their own search results is MSN Search. More times than not, webmasters are not happy with what search engines show for their own website and although there are some obvious things we have control over to set things straight, MSN has created another way to tell them to stop using the DMOZ description in their search results.

If you are not happy with what MSN is showing as your description, more than likely it is directly from what DMOZ has listed for your site. You can now add the following META tag to tell MSN not to use the DMOZ description any longer:

< meta content="NOODP" name="msnbot" />

If all of the engines begin to adopt this tag, then the proper tag would be:

< meta content="NOODP" name="ROBOTS" / >

Of course, other simple tasks to do that can change what search engines show in their results would be to update what is showing between the < TITLE > tags and also what is in the < meta name="DESCRIPTION" /> tag. Some engines also will pull the first bit of text that shows on your site, so making your first sentence something that is descriptive can help.

These days there are usually several ways to skin a cat, so covering all angles will usually ensure you get the results desired.