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Using ACF and Yoast SEO together

Words byDavid DarkeJune 22, 2016

The standard way of adding written content to WordPress is through the built in “what you see is what you get” (WYSIWYG) editor. This can be fairly restrictive when handling either a lot of content, or even a mix of rich media. To get around this many developers employ a block building principle to their content management.

This grants the end user a lot of benefits:

  • Unique options can be granted to a specific block, this keeps the UI clean and relevant.
  • Block order can be easily dragged and dropped around the page.
  • There are fewer chances for ‘user error’ when handling specific block options. Explanatory text can also be added to blocks.

For our block building system we use Advanced Custom Field and their Flexible Content add-on. Here is an example of how we utilise blocks at Atomic Smash:

Whitechapel Wordpress editor

Adding content to a site becomes far more intuitive when you construct a page row by row.

Even with the benefits there are a number of drawbacks. When using almost any page builder, the actual content is saved in custom fields and not in the standard WYSIWYG editor BUT built in functionality like generating excerpts and external plugins use the default input box as a source of content.

This becomes most frustrating when utilising an incredibly popular plugin like Yoast SEO. With well over 1 million active installations, it really does set the standard for optimising content for search engines inside WordPress.

Available plugins

So to get all of these blocks to be analysed, the source of content needs to be ‘tweaked’, this is our selected and tested plugin:

WordPress SEO ACF Content Analysis

This is an independently created plugin has a frequent revision history that we’ve had fantastic results with. The plugin doesn’t really have any options, but does allow you to specify fields that would would like to skip.

Download here

This plugin will allow you to use ACF and Yoast SEO together and bring client confidence in the content they are writing.


Profile picture ofDavid Darke

David Darke

As the lead developer and co-founder at Atomic Smash, David’s wealth of knowledge in website development means that all sites work seamlessly across desktop, tablet and mobile devices.

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