How To Add SEO To A WordPress Post

Updated On
[o2modified-date]
By
Liz Jamieson

Every blog post should include a meta title and a meta description. Meta titles and meta descriptions are not shown in a blog post, They are hidden behind the scenes, but are still available to represent the post in search engine listings.

The ability to add SEO metadata to a post is usually provided by an SEO plugin. There are many different SEO plugins to choose from.

The SEO plugin I use on my sites and on client sites is the free version of the SEO Framework plugin. The SEO Framework has some premium (paid) extensions which you can add. If your site requires any paid extensions I will contact you about it separately. But for most sites, the free SEO plugin is sufficient.

Automatic SEO

You would be forgiven for thinking that having to type all this metadata yourself, is a waste of time.

If you prefer not to handcraft each post's SEO metadata, the plugin can do it for you automatically. Given that this portion of search engine optimization can be done automatically, you would be forgiven for thinking that having to create the metadata yourself then type it in, is a waste of time.

It isn't. If you allow any SEO plugin to do the work for you, the values it will choose will be drawn from what you've written in your post. This means the SEO metadata will be duplicates of content that already exists in your post.

Duplicate content should generally be avoided in case it affects your ability to rank in Google. However another reason to avoid it here involves missed opportunity. You would miss an opportunity to add related terms to your page, and to use the SEO metadata as a hook to persuade users to click your links.

Ideally SEO titles and descriptions should be unique, relevant and persuasive. The only way to achieve that is to write them yourself.

SEO Framework Blog Post Settings

Use the SEO Framework plugin's colour coded system to check you have done everything right

Below is an annotated image showing you all the key SEO settings. The numbers refer to those in the diagram below.

  1. You are aiming for this T symbol to be green. It's green when you make the Meta Title an appropriate length and you do not use the same words too many time. The SEO Framework plugin will let you know if you do.
  2. You want the D symbol to be green too. Similarly it will be green if you make the Meta Description an appropriate length and it also doesn't repeat the use of any words more than three times.
  3. This is where you place the Meta Title. Make sure it sums up what the post is about and uses some different but still related terms to those used in the title of the post. Also use a capital letter on each word as this somehow makes the entry look more polished when listed in the Google search engine results.
  4. The plugin will automatically add the name of your site to the end of each meta title. This is for branding purposes but does not always work well. For example, the title of my site should be Elizabeth Jamieson Web Services. However that is too long and if it were attached to the end of every meta title, there's be no room for the main guts of the meta title itself. So to this end, I shortened my site name to Elizabeth Jamieson, in preference to EJWS, as the former was better for branding myself. I will try to make your site name as short as possible.
  5. Here you can check this box to remove the blog name in the cases where all available space is required for meta titles.
  6. Use this as a descriptive call to action, or persuasive text to interest the searcher. The words used should also be related to the main topic of the blog post.
SEO Framework settings for a blog post
SEO Framework Blog Post Settings

Adding An SEO Title And Meta Description

How Your Post Appears In Search

Your aim is to have your blog post to show up for relevant search terms and then entice users to click.

When your post is crawled by Google, it should end up in the search results looking something like the diagram below.

Notice where the data you entered shows up.

  1. The meta title
  2. The URL of the post
  3. The meta description can appear here, although sometimes Google will select another text from yo0ur post if it fits better with a user's query.
How Your Blog Post Will Look In the Search Engine Results Pages
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram