How to add keywords and meta descriptions in WordPress – tips & tricks.


Looking to give your SEO a boost?

Wanna learn how to add keywords and meta descriptions in WordPress?

Great, we’ll show you how.

Let’s jump right in.

Why should I add keywords and meta descriptions in WordPress?

What is a keyword?

A keyword is any word or phrase that someone looking for your content might type into Google to find it.

What is a meta description?

Meta descriptions appear underneath each search result. They usually give you a bit of extra info about the content.

Here’s an example of a meta description:

what is a meta description

How important are they for SEO?

Both keywords and descriptions are useful and necessary because they help to tell the Google bots what your site is all about.

However, there is some debate amongst experts as to how important they actually are.

The truth is, no-one knows for sure because Google doesn’t exactly shout all of its algorithmic secrets from the rooftop. 

One thing Google has told us is that they don’t factor in meta descriptions when deciding where to rank you.

But that doesn’t mean that they aren’t important, because they are.

For 2 key reasons.

  • Meta descriptions entice people to click on your offering from the results page.

In a roundabout way, then, you can improve your ranking by crafting and adding appealing meta descriptions to your pages.

Tips for writing meta descriptions:

  • Keep it short. According to SEO and digital marketing expert Neil Patel, your Meta description should be between 120 to 140 characters.
  • Use your main keyword phrase. Try to make it sound as natural as you can.
  • Make it appealing. Tell people what they can gain from visiting your site. Sell yourself! You want that click!

Now that you know how what they are and how to write them, let’s look at how to add keywords and meta descriptions to your site.

How to add keywords and Meta Descriptions in WordPress.

The easiest way to do this is to use a plugin. Yoast SEO is one of the best. It has over 5 million users and is updated regularly.

So, the first thing you’re going to want to do is install and set up the free version of Yoast SEO.

If you already have Yoast up and running, scroll down to step 5.

Otherwise, let’s start with how to get the Yoast SEO Plugin.

1. Go to Plugins then Add New.

plug ins add new

2. Enter “Yoast SEO” into the search bar on the right. 

yoast seo plugin for metadescription

3. Click the grey install now button.

install ypast

4. Activate the plugin by clicking the blue box (it may show as grey depending on what version of WordPress you are using).

activate yoast for metadescription

You have now successfully installed Yoast SEO, good job!

Head back to the main menu on the WordPress dashboard. 

You should now see that a Yoast SEO menu item has been added to your main menu on the left as shown below:

seo yoast general

5. Select Yoast SEO from the menu to open the next level menu, then select Titles & Metas as shown below:

yoast titles and meta descriptions

6. From the Titles and Metas page, select the “other” tab:

enable meta descriptions in yoast

7. Make sure that the “use meta keywords tag” is enabled as shown in the image above (don’t forget to save the changes).

You should now be able to add Meta keywords to your pages and posts.

Just one more thing to do before you can start to edit.

8. Go to the Features tab as shown below. Then make sure that you set your keyword analysis to “enabled”.

enable keyword yoast

Well done! You’re now ready to start adding and editing your keywords and meta descriptions.

How to add / edit Keywords and Meta Descriptions.

Follow these simple steps to add or edit your keywords and/or meta description.

1. Go to Posts and select add new (or go to an existing post).

2. Scroll down until you see the Yoast SEO section (it should appear just under the text editor).

3. Select the second tab along which will say “start your keyword research” if you have premium or “enter your focus keyword” if you’re using the free version.

4. Go ahead and enter a focus keyword. This will change the name of the tab but don’t panic!

5. Select the grey “edit snippet” box as shown below to open the snippet editor.

snippet editor meta description and tags

6. Go ahead and enter in your meta description. Remember to use the recommended number of characters and your keyword phrase!

meta description and seo title in yoast

See how the line under the meta description is orange?

That means it’s too long, you want it to go green! 

7. Scroll down a bit. Just under the snippet editor, you’ll see the 2 boxes where you can enter your “Focus Keyword” (one main word or phrase) and your “Meta keywords”.

focus keyword in yoast

8. Enter a focus keyword or phrase.

9. Enter your meta keywords separated by a comma. Try to keep it to 10 or under for the best results.

And that’s it! 

Thank you for reading this tutorial, I hope that you have found it useful

Good luck with your SEO and Happy WordPressing!

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