Things we love: Yoast SEO plugin for WordPress

by / Tuesday, 09 May 2017 / Published in Blog
Yoast SEO plugin

We regularly blog about the importance of organic SEO. But getting your on-page SEO working can take some time, tweaks and more time. Yoast SEO, a WordPress plugin, is an invaluable tool that leads the way to better on-page SEO.

Yoast SEO is a free plugin (there is a premium option but we have found the free version to be adequate) available on the WordPress platform. Once installed, the plugin functionality is available at the end of whatever post or page you’re adding to your website. In the ‘edit’ version of your content, simply scroll down to the end and you’ll see the Yoast SEO box. There are two tabs – readability and keyword. For this review we’ll focus on the keyword tab as this is more pertinent to your organic SEO.

Yoast SEO is set up as a traffic light system. As you would expect, red is bad and green is good (orange is ok). Once you’ve written your content, you will need to nominate a ‘focus keyword’, that best sums up your content. You will also need to write an SEO title and a meta description; the title and description are what show up in a Google search for your chosen keyword.

Yoast will then analyse your content based on your keyword and give you its verdict. Don’t lose heart if you get a red traffic light here, the plugin explains exactly where you’ve fallen down and you can make tweaks to improve it, and see your score (or the lights) change in real time.

In the analysis of your content, Yoast tells you what you could be doing to improve your on-page SEO. For example, “the keyword density is 3.2%, which is over the advised 2.5% maximum; the focus keyword was found 36 times.” In this instance you could simply edit your content to reduce the occurrence of your keyword; think about using synonyms where possible.

Yoast bases its analysis on Google guidelines, so you can make informed tweaks to your content to ensure you are hitting the right SEO notes. Your goal will always be to get that green light so spend time reading the Yoast recommendations and edit your content accordingly.

Deirdre McArdle is a content writer at the content services agency ENNclick, with offices in Cork, Ireland and Edinburgh, Scotland. Contact her at deirdre@ennclick.com or telephone 021-234 8474.

 

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