Control how your page displays in Google

When your website is indexed by Google they pull information about each page to display in what is called the snippet on the search results page (SERP).

An example of the snippet on the search results page (SERP).

Google pulls this data primarily from the title and description tags defined on your website. You can control what is shown here by editing each page.

Default Snippet

Your website will generate a default snippet with the title as “Pagename – Sitename” and the first part of your content. You can edit the default template from the Advanced SEO settings.

What is a good snippet?

What is in the snippet does not influence how high in Googles results you rank. This would be far too easy to game. However, what the snippet does does influence how likely searchers are to click through to your website.

A good snippet captures the viewers attention and convinces them to click through.

By giving a fair yet compelling title and description of your page, you can increase the likelihood of getting a click. This is an important element to Search Engine Optimization. What’s your ranking worth if nobody clicks through?

Adjusting the snippet content

Most public pieces of content on your website, such as pages and posts, have options to control the snippet content.

When you are in the edit mode, look for the Yoast SEO icon in the top right part of the page. Clicking it will open the SEO panel.

In the SEO panel, click on the “Google preview” section. This will open the controls for the Google snippet.

The Google preview panel.

The panel offers you an instant preview as you type both your title and meta description. Because there is a limit to how much you should write, a helpful bar will show you how much space you have left.

Aim to always ensure that both the SEO title bar and meta description bar are green.

Changing the slug will change the URL to your page. Use this carefully.

Don’t forget to save your page after you are done so that the changes can take effect.

Can’t find the snippet content options?

If you are editing a piece of content that does not have a single object page, such as a testimonial or customer, the SEO controls will not be available.

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