What Is Yoast SEO? The Ultimate Guide for Beginners
Yoast SEO is an important plugin for users of WordPress for search engine optimization. The tool provides numerous helpful features for optimizing search engine content. Paid versions, free versions, and a Yoast SEO trial are available for both experts and beginners. WordPress Yoast enables users to optimize content, with the intention of being noticed by Bing and Google. As one of the most frequently purchased plugins for WordPress, the tool offers numerous advantages including sitemap configurations, and options for cleaning URLs.
This Yoast SEO review will answer many questions such as what is slug in Yoast SEO, and what is focus keyword in Yoast SEO. The answer to the question of what is slug in Yoast SEO is a portion of the URL identifying a specific website in an easily readable form. This is the portion of the URL responsible for explaining the content of the page. The answer to the question of what is focus keyword in Yoast SEO is a search term or keyword the user selects for page rankings. Yoast can be used for setting a focused keyword, and will evaluate the content of the page to offer feedback.
Technical Features of the Yoast SEO Plugin
WordPress Yoast provides a wide range of technical tools to help write excellent SEO content for websites. The available features include:
The bulk editor enables changes to be made to the website content for the improvement of SEO. Even larger-scale website content can be edited without any difficulty. This is what that would look like in your WordPress account, simple and straightforward:
Import and Export:
This tool enables SEO settings to be imported or exported in the plugin. As you can see, there are many options for importing and exporting data into your Yoast WordPress. The plugin itself is straightforward, and easy to use. Here is an example.
XML sitemaps are critical for SEO. Yoast makes the creation of sitemaps simple for submission to the search engines for crawling the website. The XML sitemap creator provided by Yoast is one of the most advanced available.
(Image credit: Kinsta)
Yoast also informs numerous search engines including Google and Bing a sitemap has been created.
The redirect manager is only available with a subscription to the Premium plan. The website’s overall health is maintained through the redirection of errors with the potential of harming the website for deleted pages, changed URLs, and the Google Search Console to help ensure the health of the site. Additional details are available at this Beginners Guide to Yoast. Here is what this page might look like.
The website content is critical for achieving a high ranking with the search engines. The content needs to be informative, high-quality and relevant. Even after the content has been created, the appropriate structuring can be difficult to achieve. The internal linking tool allows related and important posts to be shown to Google. An internal link is then created for the website. This is one of Google ranking’s basic requirements.
(Image credit: Yoast)
The social integration tool places the mighty power of social media into the hands of the user by ensuring the content becomes viral. The Open Graph implementation used for the design of this tool enables a link to social media to improve performance. This is what that page would look like in your plugin:
(Image credit: Kinsta)
Premium subscribers can use the insight tool to determine the focus of the text. This ensures both the keyphrases and article remain on the same page. This is where you find that tool:
This tool is important for conducting a comprehensive content analysis. The tool checks even the smallest details including the length of the post, meta description, and if the targeted keyword is included. From the page above, the page analysis report would look similar to this:
(Image credit: WordPress)
Link and Meta Elements:
In some cases, the user may want some pages hidden, and others accessible to Google. Yoast SEO enables the user to decide which pages are hidden, and which are revealed. This page would look something like this:
(Image credit: wpbeginner)
Yoast SEO Pricing
The free version of Yoast SEO is a comprehensive tool providing assistance with basic SEO for website content. This Yoast SEO review has found the paid version to be excellent. This version is beneficial for Yoast SEO for bloggers or individuals interested in digging deeper into SEO. There is also a Yoast SEO trial available. Some of the most exceptional features included with a subscription are:
- Content optimization for multiple keywords is possible with the premium version, as opposed to the optimization for just the main keyword provided with the free version. With the premium version, a better SEO profile can be created by adding more keywords, synonyms and related keywords.
- Relevant pages can be located on the website with the internal link suggestion feature for the placement of internal links. The result is building a stronger SEO profile.
- The social media preview feature enables users to see the appearance of shared content on Facebook and Twitter through the Yoast SEO tool.
- The premium package provides reminders for upgrading the most critical content a minimum of once each six month period.
- Free members can visit the Yoast SEO knowledge base. Paid members have access to the support team for a period of one year.
- For user’s interested in a premium subscription, Yoast SEO pricing is extremely reasonable.
Yoast Improves SEO Content
Once Yoast SEO has been installed and configured, the user can begin working with the content. Even though the plugin is helpful to improve rankings, the content is still important. The right keywords are necessary for creating the best content for websites or Yoast SEO for bloggers. Once the keyword research is completed, the posts and pages for the websites can be optimized for the key phrases, and the keyword the user wants to be ranked for. This can be accomplished by setting a focus keyphrase in Yoast SEO.
The content is then analyzed to provide scores for ranking factors including how often the keywords are used, if any internal links are present, and the length of the content. The analysis shows the user how the page or post can be optimized for ranking with the selected keyphrase. Each factor score is emphasized with green, orange and red bullets. The user receives an overview of the general score including options for further improving rankings.
Yoast Improves Readability
No matter how amazing the content, it becomes useless when not understood by the readers. Even if the search engines love the content, consumers will not make a purchase if they are confused. The content will also not be shared with family, coworkers or friends. The readability feature makes certain the content can be understood easily. This feature is based on a well-researched analysis providing feedback for optimizing the content.
An algorithm is used by the plugin to check the writing for numerous factors proven to improve readability. This includes using a passive voice, and the length of paragraphs and sentences. The algorithm was created carefully to ensure accuracy without unnecessary strictness. The feedback is adapted by the user to suit each individual without losing the personal tone. Here is what that report might look like:
(Image credit: Kinsta)
Configuring Yoast SEO
Once Yoast SEO has been installed, a new menu becomes available for the customization of global settings. SEO settings are then added at the page, post and taxonomy levels. A complete guide to configuring Yoast SEO is available here. The user begins by logging into the WordPress website. After logging in, the user will be in their dashboard. There is a menu of the left with an SEO button the user clicks. This is a generalized section including the configuration wizard.
The configuration wizard enables the user to configure the most critical settings for the website including:
- Defining the name for the Google name markup
- Connecting to a variety of webmaster tools
- Modifying if the user is an individual or company for Google’s Knowledge Graph
- Setting the post types provided in the search appearances
The configuration wizard for Yoast SEO is located under the Dashboard tab. This is where the plugin is easily configured for the website. The Problems heading shows all issues impacting the website’s SEO. The Notifications heading reveals every notification from the plugin. The Features tab enables the user to enable or disable features for the entire site including:
- SEO analysis
- Text link counter
- Ryte integration
- Link suggestions
- Cornerstone content
- Readability analysis
- XML sitemaps
(Image credit: Kinsta)
Yoast SEO additionally provides users with an admin bar menu. The menu offers helpful links for third-party tools to analyze site pages. This tool makes determining if any new notifications are available very easy. Despite the steps the user must take to successfully configure the Yoast SEO plugin, the process is not difficult. Yoast SEO Premium, free Yoast, and the Yoast SEO trial provide all of the information the user will require.
For any individual new to Yoast or SEO in general, online training is available through tutorials, videos and articles. The majority of users do not experience any difficulties learning how to use all of the features available to the fullest potential. The next section is the webmaster tools. This is where the site is verified through the use of Google Search Console, Google, Yandex, Bing and Baidu tools. Webmaster tools offer the user important feedback.
The webmaster tools display feedback regarding the performance of the website for the search results. The user also learns how the website is being perceived by the search engines. This enables the user to determine which changes are necessary for improving performance. There is also a section for search appearance enabling the user to customize both the meta templates and the title applied automatically to the content. This prevents the content from being duplicated, and enables the user to determine if the specific post type should show in the search results.
There is a General tab located within the settings for search appearance. This section can be used for editing all of the following.
- The title separator allows the user to separate individual areas of the SEO title. The separator can include numerous different symbols such as a vertical bar, a bullet point or a hyphen.
- Yoast SEO provides settings for Schema and a knowledge graph. The user can see exactly how the website will appear in the Knowledge Graph for Google.
- The meta description and SEO title can be set on the homepage for the user’s site.
Using Yoast Metabox
One of the most important features of the Yoast SEO plugin is discussed in numerous articles on the internet. This feature is called the Metabox. As the user is writing content for the site, Metabox is invaluable for helping with content optimization. If the user is in the Block Editor, the Yoast Metabox is located directly beneath the editor, and on the right side of the screen. Once open, several different tabs are revealed.
The first tab enables the user to insert a phrase or word for page optimization, or the focus keyword. SEO analysis is also available with this tab. The second tab is the readability analysis. The tab provides checks to help the user write the best possible copy. The result is offering greatly improved content to the audience. According to the Yoast experts, Yoast SEO also offers all of the features outlined below.
Using a Passive Voice:
When a passive voice is used, the result is creating a distance between the content and the reader. An active voice is required for the best possible engagement. Writing content without any use of a passive voice is nearly impossible. For this reason, Yoast SEO allows for the use of a passive voice for 10 percent of all content during the analysis.
The test through Flesch Reading Ease ensures all readers will be able to understand the content. The score is simply a guideline, to be used with discretion. A good example is content written for a highly-educated audience can score much lower on the scale, and still be clearly understood.
A sentence written for a book can encompass 50 percent of the page without sacrificing readability. Online content must be a lot shorter to read easily. The target sentence length for Yoast SEO is 20 words.
Using Subheadings and Headings:
Headings are important for placing topics into groups. This makes it much easier to process the content, enabling the pages to be scanned by readers more quickly.
When the content has a minimum of three sentences beginning with the same word in a row, readers will find the information repetitive. Yoast SEO encourages all users to implement variations in their content.
When an online article contains lengthy paragraphs, readers often become lost, and unable to comprehend all of the information. The best option for easy processing is chunks of text in smaller chunks.
Transition words are an excellent option for improving the way the page flows. These words make the reader aware something is about to happen to prepare them for the very next sentence. Yoast SEO recommends using transition words in roughly 30 percent of all sentences. Accomplishing this is simple and efficient.
There is a lot users can accomplish through Yoast SEO. The Yoast dashboard is an excellent example because a lot of the settings for the plugin can be accessed and changed here. In most instances, the user does not have to make any changes. If the user is inexperienced, Yoast SEO recommends using the settings established through the configuration wizard. The user can even make changes to the appearance of the website in the search engines by using the Yoast SEO dashboard.
Yoast SEO is an exceptionally helpful tool for improving the quality and content of a website. For any individual interested in improving SEO, this plugin is a must. Yoast SEO has become one of the most popular plugins currently available due to the wide variety of features. The premium version is a paid subscription offering access to additional features. The cost of Yoast SEO is reasonable, with the plugin making a tremendous difference in the success of the website.
Yoast SEO enables the user to significantly improve website content leading to an improvement in ratings. Since a free trial is available, the user has the opportunity to see exactly how the plugin performs, and the advantages offered. After the free trial, there is an excellent chance the user will decide to continue using Yoast SEO.
Diib®: Get the Most Out of Your Yoast SEO!
Our Diib growth experts are here to answer all your questions about how our software integrates with the Yoast plugin. Our customized dashboard provides key metrics and analytics, applies them to your individual website and provides you with actionable insights for improvement. Here are some of key features of our software:
- Objectives to help you isolate reasons for high bounce rates and fix them quickly.
- Alerts that tell you about your Domain Authority and finding broken or ineffective links that could cause customers to leave your site.
- Competitor research, including bounce rates, for up to 6 of your most intense competitors.
- A monthly call with a Growth Expert to see how you can grow your domain authority.
Click here to get your free 60 second website scan or call 800-303-3510 to talk to a growth expert about your specific Yoast SEO concerns.
A slug is the piece of a URL that identifies a specific page on a website in an easy to read format. In other words, it’s the part of the URL that explains the page’s content. For example, in this URL: https://yoast.com/slug, and the slug simply is ‘slug’.
The biggest difference between Yoast’s free version and Premium is the number of focus keywords you are allowed to target in a specific article. In the free version, you can target only one focus keyword, however in the premium version, you can target multiple focus keywords.
Go to https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/9008080?hl=en and click “Verify your property”, then select the property, then cut and paste the code into Yoast.
This YouTube video is kind of long, however, it is comprehensive and should give you a good understanding of Yoast SEO. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PK30-hguZ_Y
A security expert discovered the vulnerability in the Yoast plugin (called a Race Condition) and alerted Yoast and the security community. Yoast took immediate action and quickly fixed the vulnerability.
Yoast SEO 13.1 is the newest version of the Yoast plugin. In this plugin, you’ll find several fixes and enhancements, mostly focused at improving our Schema.org structured data implementation. (Yoast.com)