Configuring SEO on WordPress (& Featured Image)

This post will teach you how to setup SEO & Feature image on each post.  Configuring SEO on WordPress (& Featured Image) is super easy especially if you use right tools.  I recommend Yoast SEO. (used in this tutorial)

Step 1.  Go to edit page or your post.  Each post will have these fields on the bottom called Yoast SEO and Featured Image on the right side as shown below.

seo setting sample

What’s SEO? – Short for Search Engine Optimization.  In short, this is how people find you on search engine like Google.  Tags are great and it’s a way but SEO is focused tag if you will and more crucial.  Using tags are great and you should make up and tag as MANY as you should but setting correct SEO is more important.  Keep in mind that on SEO, you only get to pick ONE keyword.

Step 2.  FOCUS Keyword (FK).  This is what people would type to find you.  So if you have FK of ‘How to build an awesome F450 drone gazette way’…. And someone typed exactly that, you’ll show up on the top of Google search.  Point here is to pick a FK that your audience would pick, but not to broad but also not too specific.  ‘How to build an F450’ seems like a good FK.

As you start writing FK, you’ll notice that there are suggestions that shows up. Unless you’re working with a specific model name like F450, you do want your FK to show up as suggestion because otherwise you’re making a FK that’s new to Google or not popular ones = less chance of traffic.

Update 11/3/15 – Google no longer supports suggested FK so we’ll now have to figure it out without help of suggestions.

seo cscore

Step 3.  SEO Title. Once you pick FK, you work on SEO title which can be same as your post title or what you want to show up on Google as title, it can be different because Google bot will read SEO title before reading post title and they will display SEO title if different from post title.

 

featured image sample

 

Step 4.  Meta description, same thing.  It’s description of your article.  You only get 156 characters, so choose it wisely and make sure your FK is included in it.  This information is what gets displayed on search engine + social sites.

 

 

Step 5.  SEO Score. Once you’ve done this, you’ll automatically get a SEO score when you save post.  This will appear on the top right corner and also on post list page where you save & publish the post/page.  You obviously want green but sometimes you can settle with yellow based on what kinds of page/post it is.

 

Step 6.  FEATURED IMAGE – is what shows up as your thumbnail on recent post widget.  (picture on right)  You must select a pic you uploaded to your site for this to work. (You cannot use picture from another site)  This picture is also used as featured image when sharing via social network.

Once everything is done, it does take a few days for everything to correctly saved with search engine.  And all you need to do is type in URL and you’ll get all the information automatically like an example shown below. (example is from facebook)

SEO sample

That’s it!  If you followed above tutorial, you have successfully configured SEO and Featured image for your post.  Remember, if you do this before you publish your post, it’s MUCH faster than updating it afterwards.  Also, if you want to do more specific management on social site display, click on ‘Social’ tab.  You’ll get a whole new page of options for you to specify how your post is shared via social network.  But I typically do not feel need to set that up separately.  Maybe I’m just lazy.  😉

 

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