Search engines love to crawl WordPress pages; but, they’re not fully optimized. Luckily, TSF takes care of all critical meta-optimizations for your pages. For instance, TSF directs search engines to the correct pages, it informs search engines of connected pages and archives throughout your website, and it correctly sets up titles, descriptions, and social sharing information.
Within this tutorial, we’ll only be scratching the surface of on-page SEO optimization: meta optimization.
Now, you can optimize your pages yourself, or let TSF handle it for you. In either case, you’re in good hands.
Let TSF handle SEO for you
If you don’t want to be bothered with SEO, you can let TSF handle it for you! TSF intelligently and automatically generates all meta tags for you via its AI: It reads your titles, content, and queries WordPress for additional info; all this will allow TSF to generate your meta tags automatically. We spent thousands of hours optimizing this and we will continue to do so even further. We firmly believe the solution brought with TSF is the most complex, advanced, and accurate version available for WordPress.
But, if you think some of your pages require a little more love, then let’s improve them even further.
Handle SEO yourself
You can find an SEO meta box on every public post type. Within this meta box, you’ll see various input fields. They’re very straightforward, and they’ll inform you of correctness.
If you think you need a helping hand with filling in the input fields, you should try out our free Focus extension. It’ll guide you through the process of focusing your content, which will result in ranking higher for specific keywords and synonyms thereof.
Now, let’s go over the fields.
The basics: Beautifying your pages
Beautifying your pages in search engines can be done by using just the Meta Title and the Meta Description fields. TSF will take care of the rest for you.
On the left (or above, on mobile) of the title and description input fields, you’ll find an enumerating character counter. You’ll also find a thin bar, which is the pixel counter. The pixel counter calculates the real allowed text-width on Google’s search engine results pages; whereas the character counter is merely a guideline. So, you should focus on making the pixel counter green for the best results in Google.
Social meta settings only have a character counter. Here, the characters are the rule instead of a guideline.
The meta title is what’s prominently displayed to the user on a search engine. It’s crucial to remember that you should—rather, you must—brand your titles. So, only use the blog name removal option if you plan to reinsert it yourself thereafter.
The meta title should describe your page in a few words. It should be inviting, and it shouldn’t be misleading. Good titles lower the bounce rate, and your pages will rank higher because of that.
The meta description is what’s displayed beneath the titles on the search engine. Like the meta title, it should be inviting, and it shouldn’t be misleading. It’s best to describe what your page is about in a few words.
The social meta settings help you display your pages beautifully on social media. Facebook, Discord, Twitter, Pinterest, and others read Open Graph metadata. Twitter, specifically, uses their proprietary meta tags before reading Open Graph meta tags. We’ve written a tutorial that helps you test these values.
Advanced: Directing robots and visitors
Googlebot and Bingbot are web crawlers that read rules (directives) before they continue reading and indexing your pages. They follow these rules numinously. In the Visibility tab of the SEO meta settings, you’ll find advanced fields that allow you to direct them.
These settings are used to deoptimize the current page, so to boost another. With that said, it’s important to read the
[?] fields before using these settings. You can click on blue question marks, and they’ll lead you to Google’s documentation on using these fields, and why you should (or shouldn’t) use them.
More data: Structure
The structure tab is brought with the Articles extension. This extension helps search engines better understand your timely content (WordPress Posts). We highly recommend using this extension.
Get guided: Audit
The audit tab is brought with the Focus extension. This extension tests your meta fields and your content for focus keywords and their synonyms. Follow these guidelines, and your pages will rank higher. Just be sure not to ruin your content while doing so.
Set a primary category
If your article (or product) has multiple categories, you may wish to set the most descriptive category as primary. You can set it via the radio button at the right of the category. This may change the linking structure, and it will change the breadcrumbs displayed in Google.
Crawling takes time
After you’ve optimized the metadata of a page, the search engine must crawl it again to know what you’ve changed. It can take anywhere from a few minutes to a few weeks before they notice the changes. However, you can request a priority crawl at Google, which will help them notice changes from just a few minutes up to at most a day.
Search engines (notoriously Google) are also free to ignore your metadata. But, the search engine will only do so when it can’t match your metadata to the given query. Follow the guidelines brought with the Focus extension to prevent this from happening.