Is it okay to leave meta descriptions blank and just let Google pick its own?!
Can body text replace Meta description for an effective link description in the search results?
I just heard from a SEO friend that if you have content to support semantically related keywords on a page, you can force Google to pull copy from the page for the search results by NOT putting anything in the meta description.
My feeling is that, I don't want Google to randomly pull copy to create a description. However, I've also noticed that dynamic ad groups in paid search seem to rank quite well. Granted, it's not exactly the same because in paid we create the descriptions and Google dynamically generates the headlines.
What are your thoughts on this?
Yes, you can get away without using a meta description and just let Google choose a link description from the content it finds in the body text assuming that would be appropriate and/or adequate.
We're aware of many cases where eCommerce sites are doing just that with their product pages and ranking quite well.
Of course, as you'd expect, a category page with little or no text wouldn't work well because your search snippet would lack substance without a meta description. So, to make this strategy worthwhile, you'll need to make sure your pages have an appropriate amount of body text that Google can select....