In this step-by-step guide, you’ll learn how to change the SEO title in WordPress.
Changing the SEO title is important because you can insert keywords into this HTML field to help increase the rankings and traffic for a web page from search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing.
The SEO title is also known as the “meta title” or “page title”. Each of these terms can be used interchangeably when referring to instructions in the WordPress content management system.
How to Change the SEO Title In WordPress
1. Install an SEO Plugin
By default, you cannot alter the SEO title information on WordPress, so you’ll need to install a plugin to give you this capability.
The most popular (and free) WordPress plugins for this purpose include:
Each of these plugins works in a similar way, so these step-by-step instructions will apply to help you change the SEO titles for your WordPress blog posts and pages.
For this first step, just pick one of these plugins, install it, and then activate it on your WordPress site.
(Note: If you want to learn the various ways for how to add keywords in WordPress without plugins there’s an instruction guide for that process too.)
2. Open the Blog Post or Page
The second step of the process is to open up an existing blog post or page or create a new one altogether.
3. Scroll Down to the SEO Metadata Section
After your blog post or page is opened in the WordPress dashboard, you need to scroll down to the new SEO metadata section that appears below the content editor.
The user interface will look different depending on the SEO plugin you’re using. and the area for the SEO title may be labeled with that term or “Post Title”. However, the same concept of editing the SEO title is the same regardless of the plugin being used.
Most SEO plugins have placeholder information in the SEO title field, such as “Post Title”, “Separator”, or “Site Title”. You can delete these variables if you’d like so you can start fresh with a new title in the next step.
4. Change the SEO Title
The next step is to simply change the SEO title by editing this field.
You may be able to do this directly in the SEO metadata box or you’ll have to click on an “Edit Snippet” button to get the SEO title field to appear.
As you write the new SEO title, you’ll see a character counter next to it. This tooltip alerts you to the number of characters you’ve used so far in the SEO title.
A best practice for SEO title optimization is to make your meta titles 60 characters or less so that all of the information will appear in Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs) for your web page.
If you go over the 60-character limit in the SEO title, Google will truncate the meta title in the SERPs and show ellipses for your web page listing; indicating that there is more information than it can display in the SERPs.
5. Preview the SEO Title In the Google Snippet
Each SEO plugin will show you a preview of how your new SEO title will appear as a Google snippet. This allows you to see what the title will look like to users of the search engine and be able to adjust accordingly.
6. Save the Blog Post or Page
The final step of changing the SEO title is to save the blog post or page. After you save the content, the new SEO title information will be stored in the WordPress document for the search engine crawlers to crawl and index for the web page.
Changing the SEO Title In WordPress Summary
I hope you enjoyed this instructional guide on how to change the SEO title in WordPress.
As you discovered, there are only 6 steps to follow for changing WordPress SEO titles. However, you must install a plugin to access this feature on a WordPress site because it is not a native functionality in the content management system.