An optically transparent metamaterial absorber (MMA) operated in the C-band (4–8 GHz) is optimally designed based on the second-order cross fractal structure. The experimental results show that the reflection loss of the proposed MMA is lower than −10 dB from 3.98 GHz to 8.68 GHz. Two overlapped resonances located at 4.77 GHz and 7.33 GHz, respectively, are caused by the second-order cross fractal structure. Distributions of surface current, electromagnetic field and power loss density are investigated to illustrate the absorptive characteristics and electromagnetic loss mechanisms of the proposed MMA. Moreover, the average optical transmittance of the MMA is close to 75% from 390 nm to 780 nm. The MMA possesses simultaneously strong absorptive capacity in the C-band and high transmittance in the visible light range, showing potential application in special environment.