Having Trouble With Your Yoast Page Titles for Wordpress? You’re Not Alone.


Here are a few tips on how to identify and clean up any problems you may be having with the popular Wordpress Plug-in.

When considering a CMS during the process of launching a new website WordPress is often a popular choice because of its ease of use. From a search engine optimization (SEO) perspective, it keeps content well organized, is easy to add blog postings, as well as new pages and plug-ins can help with any technical items that may be too difficult to implement otherwise.

A popular plug-in for WordPress to help with at SEO specifically is called Yoast SEO. It's a great plug-in for helping you for review content in terms of target on each page. The tool scores your page titles and on-page content on how well it reflects the targeted keywords for the pages and help map out an overall strategy. I think Yoast is great. I’ve used it with several different websites and would recommend that anyone doing SEO on their own use the Yoast Plugin or a similar SEO tool.

With that said we have seen a common problem popping up with a few different clients over the last month or so that has actually created more problems that it has solved, specifically when it comes to SEO Targeted Page Titles and Meta Descriptions.

Most people that have done work with creating SEO targeted Page Titles know that it is the number one ranking factor for on-page content. Even with the adjustments Google has made over the last few months to try to assign its own Page Titles, optimized titles are still HUGELY IMPORTANT. As for Meta Descriptions, they themselves are not used for ranking factor but they influence the important factors of click-through rate and bounce-rate. Even with the recent announcement that Google has actually been trying to assign its own page titles to content based on the search query, page titles are still significant for SEO success. You still want to have optimize titles for the content below but it goes back to the overall focus of having strong pages strong content to make a strong site.

Twice over the last few month have we seen clients that have their sites on Wordpress with a Yoast SEO plugin and both times we have encountered the same issue.

Let’s take the Trumpet Behavior Health Homepage for example:

Here is the homepage result in Google:

Google Displayed Page Title: TBH.com - ABA Treatment | Trumpet Behavioral Health, Applied...

yoastblog image 1

Yoast Targeted Title: Homepage - ABA Treatment | Trumpet Behavioral Health

Targeted Meta Description: Applied Behavior Analysis Experts | ABA Therapy for Autism and Related Disorders | In-Home, Center-Based, School-Based, and Community-Based Services

Yoast Plugin Page Title Code

Page Title in Code: ABA Treatment | Trumpet Behavioral Health, Applied Behavior Analysis Experts, ABA Therapy for Autism and Related Disorders.

Meta Description in Code: Autism Resources for Parents, Educators, and Healthcare Providers

Page Title Code

When looking at all three examples it’s clear there is a disconnect between the desired displayed Page Title and Meta Description and what is actually being pulled in by Google. A

Great. Can you just tell me how do I fix this?

There are a couple of solutions, you can simply copy your Yoast Page Title and insert it into the Title section at the top of the page in Wordpress:

Page Title in Wordpress

Or you can follow the instructions provided by Yoast themselves by adding the following code template to the titles: <title><?php wp_title(''); ?></title> Find out more about this process from their helpful forum.

As I said, Yoast is a great platform and very helpful to use. You just want to make sure that you're thorough and double checking that Google is actually pulling your target page title. It is always good to perform an SEO audit every twelve months or so on your site in order to expose any of these problems that can arise. If you’d like to find out more about our SEO audit process and pricing please let us know.

Josh Culver
written by JOSH CULVER

Josh Culver is the Director of Inbound Marketing for Carbon8. With more than seven years of experience in digital marketing, Josh has been able to work on email and display projects with a recent focus in paid and organic search.

share this