Article Series: Streamlining WordPress
In this tutorial, I will show you how to remove meta tags in your document head to improve page performance and get better search results.
Getting Found in Search: You Need Meta Tags
When you look at the source code of top ranking pages in any competitive category, the pages are quite simple, straight to the point and light on code.
The meta tags you need to get ranked are only the Title, Page Description and Keywords.
Meta Tags to Get Search Results:
Meta Tags: The Page Title
The page title explains the page topic. Be precise and to the point. You have two audiences, Google and your end user scrolling the search results. Adding interesting words to the title meta tag to encourage users to visit your page is very helpful.
Note: Use caution when adding an punctuation and special characters to the title tag. Remember, “Less is More.”
Meta Tags: Page Description
The page description is critical to search marketing and getting your page ranked. Your page description needs to be 155 characters or less – including spacing and punctuation. Do not use all caps or capitalize each word. I have found placing your keywords or phrase towards the beginning is very effective.
I often use a call to action, words that create excitement or attention grabbing words first and immediately follow with my keyword phrase. I then briefly explain what the page is about and repeat the keyword phrase or part of the keyword phrase at the end of the description is very effective.
Search Marketing Tip: Use enticing adjectives just before your keywords or keyword phrase and you will see more clicks! An adjective is descriptive action word. Explore adjectives with examples here.
Meta Tags: Keywords
Search marketing professionals have declared for years that meta tags for search keywords is not necessary and even unused. Google claims the keyword tag is ignored. There are other search engines including Yahoo and Bing that do use the keyword tag. If I can get even 10% more traffic using this short tag, it’s well worth it.
There is an ongoing debate on use of the Keywords meta tag. With my search marketing experience and success, I choose to include them.
Search Marketing Tip: Use the keyword tag to stay focused on your keyword phrase and to keep your page organized.
WordPress Meta Tags You Don’t Need
With each meta tag I ask simple questions…
- “Do I need this for this project?”
- “It is critical?”
- “Can I remove it?”
Quite honestly, how often do you need to display emoji’s? There are two scripts to detect and style emoji characters. What about the WordPress generator tag? Let’s lighten the code and get rid of the tags and the scripts bloating WordPress down.
How to Remove WordPress Meta Tags
Here is the code I place in my child theme function file to remove excess WordPress meta tags. You can select the all of the code or just the lines you need.
Remove WordPress Feed Links Meta Tags
Place the code below in your child theme function file to remove the feed link meta tags. Syndicating your content is very good for building traffic and search marketing. If you are concerned about content scraping, simply add internal links back to your content and other pages in your site. It works like a charm!