Jekyll SEO Tag

A Jekyll plugin to add metadata tags for search engines and social networks to better index and display your site's content.

Gem Version Build Status

What it does

Jekyll SEO Tag adds the following meta tags to your site:

While you could theoretically add the necessary metadata tags yourself, Jekyll SEO Tag provides a battle-tested template of crowdsourced best-practices.

What it doesn't do

Jekyll SEO tag is designed to output machine-readable metadata for search engines and social networks to index and display. If you're looking for something to analyze your Jekyll site's structure and content (e.g., more traditional SEO optimization), take a look at The Jekyll SEO Gem.

Jekyll SEO tag isn't designed to accommodate every possible use case. It should work for most site out of the box and without a laundry list of configuration options that serve only to confuse most users.


  1. Add the following to your site's Gemfile:
  gem 'jekyll-seo-tag'
  1. Add the following to your site's _config.yml:
    - jekyll-seo-tag
  1. Add the following right before </head> in your site's template(s):
  {% seo %}


The SEO tag will respect any of the following if included in your site's _config.yml (and simply not include them if they're not defined):

  • title - Your site's title (e.g., Ben's awesome site, The GitHub Blog, etc.)
  • description - A short description (e.g., A blog dedicated to reviewing cat gifs)
  • url - The full URL to your site. Note: site.github.url will be used by default.
  • author - global author information (see below)
  • twitter:username - The site's Twitter handle. You'll want to describe it like so:
    username: benbalter
  • facebook:app_id (a Facebook app ID for Facebook insights), and/or facebook:publisher (a Facebook page URL or ID of the publishing entity). You'll want to describe one or both like so:
    app_id: 1234
    publisher: 1234
  • logo - Relative URL to a site-wide logo (e.g., /assets/your-company-logo.png)
  • social - For specifying social profiles. The following properties are available:
    • name - If the user or organization name differs from the site's name
    • links - An array of links to social media profiles.
  • google_site_verification for verifying ownership via Google webmaster tools

The SEO tag will respect the following YAML front matter if included in a post, page, or document:

  • title - The title of the post, page, or document
  • description - A short description of the page's content
  • image - Relative URL to an image associated with the post, page, or document (e.g., /assets/page-pic.jpg)
  • author - Page-, post-, or document-specific author information (see below)

Disabling <title> output

Jekyll SEO Tag is designed to implement SEO best practices by default. If for some reason, you don't want the plugin to output <title> tags on each page, simply invoke the plugin within your template like so:

{% seo title=false %}

Author information

Author information is used to propagate the creator field of Twitter summary cards. This is should be an author-specific, not site-wide Twitter handle (the site-wide username be stored as site.twitter.username).

TL;DR: In most cases, put author: [your Twitter handle] in the document's front matter, for sites with multiple authors. If you need something more complicated, read on.

There are several ways to convey this author-specific information. Author information is found in the following order of priority:

  1. An author object, in the documents's front matter, e.g.:
    twitter: benbalter
  1. An author object, in the site's _config.yml, e.g.:
    twitter: benbalter
  1.[author], if an author is specified in the document's front matter, and a corresponding key exists in E.g., you have the following in the document's front matter:
  author: benbalter

And you have the following in _data/authors.yml:

    picture: /img/benbalter.png
    twitter: jekyllrb

    picture: /img/potus.png
    twitter: whitehouse

In the above example, the author benbalter's Twitter handle will be resolved to @jekyllrb. This allows you to centralize author information in a single _data/authors file for site with many authors that require more than just the author's username.

Pro-tip: If authors is present in the document's front matter as an array (and author is not), the plugin will use the first author listed, as Twitter supports only one author.

  1. An author in the document's front matter (the simplest way), e.g.:
  author: benbalter
  1. An author in the site's _config.yml, e.g.:
  author: benbalter

Customizing JSON-LD output

The following options can be set for any particular page. While the default options are meant to serve most users in the most common circumstances, there may be situations where more precise control is necessary.

  • seo
    • name - If the name of the thing that the page represents is different from the page title. (i.e.: "Frank's Café" vs "Welcome to Frank's Café")
    • type - The type of things that the page represents. This must be a type, and will probably usually be something like BlogPosting, NewsArticle, Person, Organization, etc.
    • links - An array of other URLs that represent the same thing that this page represents. For instance, Jane's bio page might include links to Jane's GitHub and Twitter profiles.