Although the WordPress CMS is SEO-friendly, a few plugins will make it more powerful. One of such kind is the “WordPress SEO” plugin which is created by Joost de Valk (Yoast). The plugin incorporates all the major features that are required to make your WordPress blog more effective. Following are the useful features of the Yoast WordPress SEO plugin.
- Title and Descriptions (Snippets)
- Meta Robots
- Focus keyword testing
- Permalink clean up
- XML sitemaps
- RSS enhancements
- Robots.txt and .htaccess editor
- Clean up head section
Titles and Meta Descriptions
It is highly recommended to have separate or unique post titles and meta descriptions. WordPress SEO by Yoast plugin makes it so easy to add separate title and descriptions for every post or article. You can do It using the Snippet preview functionality.
How to Install & Setup WordPress SEO Plugin by Yoast?
Installation of this plugin is same like every other WordPress plugin installation. Once installed and activated, you’ll have to make necessary changes so that the plugin works efficiently.
Yoast WordPress SEO Plugin Settings
Please remember that I’m suggesting the best settings that benefits to every blogger, especially the newbies. If you’re an advanced user, please ignore anything you don’t like or comment the same. If you’re already using another SEO plugin like All-in-One SEO plugin, or theme frameworks like Thesis, Genesis or Headway, then you’ll have to transfer all your previous data to WordPress SEO plugin by installing the SEO Data Transporter plugin. But, if you’ve just created your WordPress blog and don’t have any SEO plugins like these installed, then you can skip the above step and start with the below steps.
Go to the dashboard of your WordPress SEO plugin by clicking on the “SEO” link that is displayed on the lower left of your WordPress dashboard.
Generally, people update verification tags in the theme itself which is not advisable as your information will be wiped off if you change your WordPress theme to a new one. Instead you can enter those meta tag values in the “General Settings” tab under “Webmaster Tools” options and verify your Google Webmaster Tools, Bing webmaster tools and Alexa.
Titles & Metas
I am not listing all the details here as it could be easily understandable using images. Just follow the settings of WordPress SEO titles & metas.
All these tabs include the input boxes that allow you to enter the format or structure you’d like to use for all your pages. I’m just listing out the best SEO practices that’re allowed by Google Pets.
Using the best WordPress permalink structure will have a lot of influence on your SEO score.
Enabling this plugin will add a navigation structure like Home > Category > PostTitle to all your posts. However, this is not useful anymore. You can add it if you wish. Simply , enable the option and add the mentioned code in your template.
This is one of the most useful features of Yoast SEO plugin. As I said earlier, you can fight RSS content scrapers using this feature. Just, put your credits after each post in RSS feeds and blogs that copy your feeds will as well have the credits remained in the footer.
If you’ve used any SEO plugin or your theme framework has provided you inbuilt SEO options, then you might want to use this feature to import those settings to Yoast WordPress SEO plugin.
Edit your Files
Using this option, you can edit your robots.txt file as well as the htaccess file.
That’s it! Please note that using the best SEO settings will help you avoid any duplicate content issues on your own blog.