What is metadata for blogging SEO?

In simple terms, metadata is information that describes other data. When thinking about your SEO strategy, metadata is information you provide to search engines to help them understand your website. Metadata can include title tags, meta descriptions, or alt text. 

Have you ever seen an image on Instagram or Twitter described in detail directly underneath? That’s likely the alt text (or alternative text) that the creator of that post added. Creators use alt text to help search engines easily find their photos. In addition, providing alt text for images makes your image accessible to individuals with visual impairments (a person who uses a screen reader can have the alt text read to them so they can experience your post!). 

Metadata is crucial for SEO blogging and SEO strategy. Read on to learn all about how to add metadata to your blog posts, what tools and resources you can use to help with metadata, and how to track your metadata’s performance.

How can you add metadata to your blog posts?

Look, you can have the best blog in the world with the most amazing content…but if you don’t include metadata in your SEO blogging strategy, you’re likely not reaching as many people. What’s the point of all that awesome content if no one ever reads it?

It can be intimidating to start including metadata in your blog posts, especially if your blog has been around for a while. But don’t worry – adding metadata is a relatively simple process that can result in a big payoff. 

  1. First, you need to invest in an SEO plugin and install it on your WordPress site. 

Once it’s ready to go, start adding in keywords you used for SEO strategy in the keywords box. 

  1. Next, create a meta description of the post. 

This meta description is what Google will show in the search results. It’s separate from anything you wrote in the original blog post – consider it a brief (no more than 160 characters) advertisement for that particular post. Make the descriptions clear and engaging to encourage readers to click! This article from The Daily Egg takes you through this process step-by-step. 

What tools should you use to add metadata to blog posts?

Yoast SEO is one of the most widely used plugins if you’re looking for a tool to improve your SEO strategy or metadata. It’s very user-friendly and there are tons of articles and tips to help get you started. 

I used Yoast SEO on my website for years but recently switched to RankMath. Read my SEO tools blog post to find out why I made the switch, and learn about other free SEO tools for your website!

WordPress also offers plugins for adding metadata to posts. Search around until you find one with useful features for your website!

How do you track the performance of metadata in your blog posts? 

If you’re spending a lot of time optimizing your metadata for your blog posts, you’re definitely going to want to see if what you’re doing is making an impact. 

The easiest way to know if your metadata is working is to look at your site clicks. Kanuka Digital says that “writing effective metadata is one of the easiest places to start when it comes to improving your site’s rankings in Google results.”

Just because you add metadata to your SEO strategy once doesn’t mean you can be finished dealing with metadata forever. If you aren’t seeing the results you want in Google rankings you may need to go back to the drawing board with your metadata.

Experts like Neil Patel suggest placing a call to action in all your meta descriptions in order to urge users to click on your website. If you’d like more tips for improving your meta descriptions or SEO, check out my blog post on best practices for improving your SEO strategy in 2022.

What are the downsides to using metadata?

There are security concerns with metadata, one being that you could potentially be sharing sensitive or private information without realizing it. Information is automatically stored in a digital file’s metadata when you upload images, files, or other documents to your website or social media.

Things like the GPS coordinates of where the photo was taken, the time and date the photo was taken, or the username of the creator of the file can all be stored as metadata. 

If you share a personal photo on your blog or website and don’t realize all the information stored within it, someone out there could use it to discover personal details about you. 

When creating metadata for your blog posts or website, it’s important to remove all personal and identifying information from a digital file’s metadata. For example, instead of directly sharing a photo from your camera roll to social media, share a screenshot that would remove some of the metadata associated with the image.

The importance of metadata for blogging SEO

Prioritizing metadata in your SEO strategy is one of the easiest ways you can improve your website. Your website is more likely to get clicks from search results if you develop a strong SEO strategy for your blog that includes metadata. Remember, metadata is information that describes other data, and it should encourage users to visit your website. 

If you’re struggling with how to incorporate SEO keywords and metadata into your writing, subscribe to the Writer’s Block newsletter to stay up to date on all my latest SEO tips and posts!

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