How to add Keywords and Meta Descriptions in WordPress using Yoast SEO Plugin
Now you have designed a nice looking website, that’s a huge achievement! But that isn’t all to it. Your website isn’t going to be visible to your intended audience when they perform a search using Google or any other search engines. Using keywords and Meta descriptions is your next step to significantly increase organic traffic and ultimately the SEO ranking for your wordpress website. This can translate into more sales and quality leads for your business. In this write-up we will show you how to easily add keywords and meta descriptions in your WordPress website using Yoast SEO Plugin.
Why should I Add Keywords and Meta Descriptions in WordPress using Yoast SEO Plugin?
Using the right Keywords and meta descriptions gives search engines like Google, Bing, Yandex etc the ability to understand the content of your blog posts and web pages. Keywords are important words or phrases that people type in search engines like Google to find your website’s content. A meta description on the other hand is a brief description of what your page or post is about. Usually meta descriptions shows up in Google search results. It is important to note that keywords and meta description are quite invisible HTML meta tags that form part of the header code on your website. Using a WordPress Yoast SEO Plugin like makes it easy to write your meta descriptions and insert keywords for your pages and posts on your wordpress website.
Placing your keywords in all relevant points on your website would provide amazing WordPress SEO results. Here is a simplified graphical description of your On-page Search Engine Optimization process. This would be helpful as you optimize your web pages using Yoast SEO plugin.
Adding Keywords and Meta Descriptions using Yoast SEO Plugin
Meta descriptions and keywords are so essential for a good On-page SEO optimization of your wordpress website. As seen in the previous image, we observe that they appear just below the title of the page. Relevant words in the description that matches with the search term are made bold. The more people find and click your content, the more Google ranks it higher as been very relevant. But you quickly notice that other related terms to the search term ‘excel training in Ibadan’ like ‘course’ are also in bold in the search results. These are referred to as LSI keywords. LSI stands for Latent Sematic Indexing). LSI keywords are words and phrases with a high degree of correlation to your target topic. Google’s algorithm uses them to help determine content quality and relevance to the search term. Meta descriptions and keywords should be written for all website pages and posts.
Installing Yoast SEO plugin for WordPress
For this tutorial, we will be using Yoast SEO Plugin which is among the best wordpress SEO plugins right now. Yoast Plugin will take care of your SEO needs on your wordpress website. It would help you create Meta descriptions, sitemaps, schema mark ups and more. It’s quite easy to setup by following the step by step installation wizard.
After installing the plugin it is important to add your verification codes under the web master tools for Google Search Console.
The next step is to set your focus Keyphrase and meta descriptions for the created pages and posts.
To do this Click on the page edit (not edit with elementor) and proceed to setup your focus keyphrase for your page. This focus keyphrase should also reflect on the page itself. Set your SEO title (should also include the focus keyphrase), the slug and meta description. The slug appears in the URL of that particular page.
What is a focus keyword?
The focus keyword or keyphrase is the search term that you want a web page or post to rank for the most. So that when people search for that phrase in Google or other search engines it becomes easy to find you. The focus keyphrase can be set directly in the Yoast SEO sidebar on the right side of your editor. If this isn’t visible an alternative is to click on the Yoast icon at the top right of the screen to reveal the input fields. In the free Yoast SEO plugin, you can use up to four words as your focus keyphrase. In the example shown, the intended focus keyphrase is ‘excel training’. Notice that we have carefully worded the Page title and Meta description to carry the keywords. You would also observe that we have used not just the focus keywords but other long tail keywords, related search terms (LSI keywords) and more. It’s a good practice to include a call to action (CTA) in the meta description box. To help you do a good job writing meta descriptions, search for any term in Google and check how the top results have crafted their page titles and meta descriptions. You can borrow some ideas from them. Avoid typographical errors in your focus keyphrase and meta descriptions.
Always keep in mind that the Meta description is that preview under a website address you see when you perform a Google search. Remember the following when writing your Meta descriptions:
- Make your Meta descriptions short and catchy typically under 160 characters. Google will cut off some characters when it becomes too long.
- Avoid typographical errors
- As much as possible ensure the focus keyword appears close to the start of your Meta description. It isn’t a good practice to embed it too far away in the body of the description.
- It’s a good practice to add a Call to action (CTA) like click now, register, call, signup etc.
- Insert keywords in the SEO title. Sometimes it could be beneficial to include the brand or company name after the main title.
- Add the keywords in URL of the page.
You can see the SEO analysis to check any issues highlighted and ensure to address them. Common issues would be including outbound links to other pages within or outside your website, Image Alt attributes and so on. It is a good practice to embed video links from YouTube or Vimeo that describes your products or services. As much as possible you want the SEO button for this page to turn green. That shows you have done a good job on that page.
If you want an image to appear beside the description when you search on Google then set a featured image for it. This is especially useful for blog articles.
How to check for the number of keywords on your web page
Go to the web page you are trying to add your keywords and meta descriptions and press CTRL + F to manually check for how many times your keywords show up on your page(notice the keywords are highlighted on the page). The rule is to avoid Keyword stuffing (using it more than necessary). Your keywords appearing 3 -10 times is just fine. Again you want to insert these keywords in your H1, H2, H3 and other headings and descriptions.
Are Keywords and Meta Descriptions still relevant for SEO in 2023 and beyond?
Yes, Keywords and Meta descriptions are still very relevant for ranking your website by search engines. Though not the only metric but it contributes a significant amount to your organic traffic. Writing smart and catchy descriptions would surely give your business the desired leap.
Found this Useful?