Yoast SEO Search Appearance settings: Archives tab

In this article, we’ll discuss the Archives tab of the Search Appearance settings of Yoast SEO in your WordPress backend. You’ll see a video explanation and we’ll explain all the settings on the tab one by one.

Video: Yoast SEO Search Appearance settings – Archives tab

Would you like to watch this video in your own language? Follow these steps to auto-translate the subtitles.

Archives tab

You can find the Archives tab by going to your WordPress backend, clicking “Yoast SEO” and then “Search Appearance” in the menu on the left-hand side. You’ll be on the Yoast SEO Search Appearance General settings screen. On this screen, click the “Archives” tab.

On the Archives tab, you can determine how different types of archives will be treated on your website. You can allow search engines to show the different types of archives of your site in their search results. We’ll discuss two different types of archives: author archives and date archives.

Do you want to know more about the other tabs? Check out the configuration guide for Yoast SEO.

Author archives

Author archives are unique index pages for each author, which will include all posts published by the author. If your blog is a single-person blog, you don’t need author archives. In that case, the author archives page will be exactly the same as the archive for the entire site. Because of that, it’s best to disable author archives if there’s only one author. However, if there are multiple authors writing for your site, you can enable the author archives. If you do that, you’ll have the same settings for author archives as you have for taxonomies and content types. That means you can set the title template, meta description template, social template (Premium), et cetera.

In addition, there’s a setting that allows search engines to show archives for authors without posts in the search results, which is disabled by default. It’s disabled because these archives would be empty, and we don’t want empty archives to show in the search results.

Date archives

Does anyone ever visit a website to dig through the archives in search of all posts written in a particular month? Most of the time, a visitor is looking for a post related to a specific topic, tag or category. From an SEO perspective, these posts in the archives have no real relation to the other posts except for their publication dates, which doesn’t say much about the content. This is why we recommend you to disable date archives. If you do choose to enable date archives, you’ll have the same options available as for author archives.

Special pages

In addition to the archives we’ve discussed before, there are a few special pages, like the search pages and the 404 pages, pages that explain that a 404 error has occurred. A 404 error often occurs when people follow a broken link. You can’t determine whether these pages should be shown in the search results, because we don’t allow you to set this, and that’s because search engines don’t allow you to. Are you still following us? However, you can set the title for these special pages on this tab, using the snippet variables that you’ve seen before.

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