Hey there! Today we are going to talk about how we can easily setup Yoast SEO plugin. But first thing first, what is SEO ? SEO can be define as Search Engine Optimization, in another words how we can drive more organic traffic to our website. There are many ways you can use to generate organic traffic to your site but in this tutorial I am going to focus on the use of a SEO plugin in wordpress.
They are many but let’s focus on Yoast SEO plugin. Yoast SEO Plugin is the most robust WordPress SEO plugin out there. I strongly recommend it if you are yet to use it. But keep in mind that if you want the best result, it must be setup and used properly and that is exactly what this post is all about.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
HOW TO INSTALL YOAST SEO PLUGIN
The installation process of Yoast SEO pluginis is the same to other plugins. You can either search for it or download and upload it. For the sake of this tutorial, let’s install it directly from our dashboard. Below is the process. First click on “plugins” or hover over plugins and click on “Add new”. Look for “Yoast SEO”, when the plugin appears in the search result, click on “Install”, next activate the plugin.
LET US GO THROUGH THE CONFIGURATION.
After a successful installation, we need to configure the plugin. To do so, go to the menu at your left, click on “SEO”. You will get something similar to the snapshot below. Secondly make sure you are in the dashboard tab then click on “configuration wizard”.
we have 12 steps to take.
step 1: welcome message
There we have two options (1) configure yoast seo plugin ourselves or (2) let yoast company set it for us. If you have money, you can order for the service otherwise the only thing you have to do there is to click on “configure yoast seo“.
step 2: Environment
Here we also have two options (1) our site is ready for search engines to index or (2) the site is under construction. Choose the stage you are. If you know your site is ready for people to start coming on, then choose the first option otherwise choose the second option.
Step 3: Site type
Here you have to choose the type of site you are running. Is your site a blog? or An online shop? A news channel? a corporation?
Step 4: Company or person.
Are you running personal site or a company site. This is important because it help google to show some related information at the right side of the search result. check the snapshot below. In this case, I have typed in “facebook” and as you can see at the right you can see some information related to facebook. That is the importance of this step.
Step 5 Social profiles
Please provide your social information or the social profile of your company here.
Step 6: Search engine visibility
here, choose what you want search engine to index. Do you want only your posts to be indexed or both posts and pages? or only your pages? It is left for you. You are in control.
Step 7: Multiple authors
Are you the only one managing the site? choose “yes” if you are not the only one managing it or no if you are the only one. why is it important? If you choose no, your author archives will be deactivated to prevent duplicate content issues.
Step 8 Google Search Console
In this section, we are going to talk about how we can connect Yoast SEO to google search console. But first, what is google search console ? Google search console is a tool given to site owners or bloggers by google to check the health of their site. This tool tells you if there are some mistakes you’ve made on your site making it difficult even impossible for google to index your posts. It also tells you some queries , your top posts ranking in google, your posotion, the impression, clicks etc …
How to submit your site/blog to Google Search Console ?
First search for google search console in google and click on the first result. Or click on this link.
The next thing is to add your site. Here is how it is done. First make sure you select website not Android app. Then add your site address and then click on “Add property”. That is all.
Now how can we connect Yoast SEO to google search console ? First go back to Yoast configurationand click on “Get google authorization code”. You will be asked to log into your google account. Next, allow Yoast to have access to your search console account and a code will be generated for you. Now code that code and past it in “Enter your authorization code here” filed and then click on “Authenticate“. After this, still in the same step (step 8), choose your profile (That is your site). Now we are good to go to the next step.
Step 9 Title settings
Here we have the option to choose the site title in search engine result. Here is what I mean. (check the snapshot below) As you can see in my case I have choosen ” Alb Blog”.
Another important thing is the title separator. Choose your desired title separator. As you can see in the snapshot, mine is different from wikipedia and web upd8.
Step 10. Yoast SEO newsletter
If you want to join yoast seo newsletter, you can. Just enter your name and email. Otherwise move to step 11. keep in mind that this step is not compulsory, you can skip it. (step 10)
Step 11 Useful post
Are you interested in reading some of their articles? If yes, then you have some posts in this section. In case you don’t have any interest or you want to check them later, just skip to the last step.
Step 12 Success!
There is nothing to do here. Congratulation, the major part of the work is now done. But still there are other thing we are going to take a look at.
Now that we are done with the configuration wizard, let us move to different tab in the dashboard. To do so, first go to the left menu, click on “SEO” —> dashboard. —-> Dashboard.
Basically there is nothing to do here. In this tab, yoast will be telling you if you have any SEO mistake or error on your site. Beside this, they do send so notifications in this tab.
In this section also there is nothing to do since we’ve done the configuration of the wizard.
Yoast SEO comes with a lot of features. You can enable / disable some of them below.
SEO analysis: The SEO analysis offers suggestions to improve the SEO of your text. Learn how the SEO analysis can help you rank.
Readability analysis: The readability analysis: offers suggestions to improve the structure and style of your text. Discover why readability is important for SEO.
Cornerstone content: The cornerstone content feature lets you to mark and filter cornerstone content on your website. Find out how cornerstone content can help you improve your site structure.
Text link counter: The text link counter helps you improve your site structure. Find out how the text link counter can enhance your SEO.
Advanced settings pages: The advanced settings include site-wide settings for your titles and meta descriptions, social metadata, sitemaps and much more. Discover all the features that Yoast SEO offers.
Ryte integration: Ryte can check daily if your site is still indexable by search engines and will notify you when this is not the case. Read more about how Ryte works.
Admin bar menu: The Yoast SEO admin bar menu contains useful links to third-party tools for analyzing pages and makes it easy to see if you have new notifications.
Company info Tab.
In this section, what we have to do is to fill in our website information. If your site is for a company, make sure you select “company” and enter the necessary information. Take a look at the example in the snapshot below to fill in your details.
Remember when we were using the “configuration wizard” in the general setting, all these information were filled in.
You can use the boxes below to verify with the different Webmaster Tools, if your site is already verified, you can just forget about these. Please follow carefully the instruction given in this snapshot.
The advanced section of the Yoast SEO meta box allows a user to noindex posts or change the canonical. These are things you might not want if you don’t trust your authors, so by default, only administrators can do this. Enabling the advanced box allows all users to change these settings.
By default this feature is enabled. Now let us move to another section of Yoast SEO plugin. To do so click on “SEO” —> Titles and Meta.
TITLES AND META
In this section, we are going to talk about the titles and meta description of our posts. But first, let us talk about the title separator.
In this section, the only option we have is to choose our titles separator. As explained earlier the title separator is used to make a difference between a post title and the site title. please take a look at the snapshot below.
Here are some option. Choose the one you like the most.
Home page or front page.
The home page is the page on which people land whenever the enter your url in browser. Now when someone search for your site in google, what information is displayed in the search result ? You need to have an appealing message in the meta description. Avoid something like the one in the snapshot below. As you can see the title and the meta description are not appealing. You need to provide some information that will move someone searching for content on the web to click on your post.
Make sure you specify a title and meta description for both the home page and the blog page.
In this section, we are going to talk about how our posts appear in the search result. By default if someone searches for information in search engine, what we normally see in the search result is:
The post title
The site title
The link to the post
the meta description
In some cases we can see how people rate the post, the date the post was published etc …
In this section, we are going to talk about things we want to appear in the search result. I personally recommend you index all. The date in snippet preview helps us to show the date at which the post was published. Same thing is applicable to media, page etc …
In this section, you can choose to index your posts category, posts tags etc … or not. If you decide to index them, please make sure you specify a title and a meta description to avoid having something weird in the search result. For instance the result in the snapshot below is not appealing. So make sure you specify a title and an appealing meta description.
Personally they are of no benefit for me so I have deactivated them meaning they are not indexed.
Deactivate to prevent duplicate.
In this section, we will be adding all the social profile of our site. To do so let us go through the different tab one after the other. For more information on how to optimize your social media, please read this post.
Add all your social media link of your site in this section. Keep in mind that in some places, you don’t need link but a username.
In this section, confirm your Pinterest profile with your site. Just click on “confirm your site Pinterest” and follow the instructions.
For more information about this section, please read this thread. basically the thread is all about Google Publisher page.
First of all, make sure you enable the sitemap functionality as shown in the snapshot below. Now let us take a lot at the different tabs.
Basically there is nothing to do here, just leave as default. To get your sitemap, copy the link of the text “XML Sitemap” by right clicking on it and select “copy link address”. Please check the snapshot below.
In this section, choose what you want to be indexed. Enable any post types you want to be indexed. I recommend you index the posts, pages …
Here you can specify any posts you don’t want to be indexed.
Likewise post types, choose if you want to index your categories, tags, product category…. Don’t forget to click on the save button at the end.
I recommend you leave this section as default unless you are an advanced user or developer. For more information on how to implement Yoast SEO breadcrumbs, please read this post.
Regarding the permalink and the RSS, leave them as default. Now, let’s move to “Tools”.
Yoast SEO is giving us three important tools that will enable us to carry so actions in bulk. Let us talk about them one after the other.
1. Bulk Editor: This tool helps us to edit the seo title and the meta description in bulk instead of make change one after the other. Below is how to can change the SEO title. Do the same with the meta description. Don’t forget to click on “SAVE”.
2. File editor: Anytime you want to make any change on your robots.txt and .htaccess file, you can make the change here. SEO—> Tools —-> File editor. Don’t forget to save the change you’ve made on the file.
3. Import and export: In other to save time, you can decide to important Yoast seo setting from another site. This tool is very powerful to help you out. You can as well import setting from other seo plugin such as all-in-one seo etc …
If you have been following us from the begin, by now you should know what search console is. we’ve talked about it in the previous sections. Basically in this section, we are going to authenticate our site with google. How do we do that? Well, just click on “re-authenticate with google’ as shown in the snapshot below.
On clicking on the button, this window will show up, click on “Get google authorization code. You will be asked to log into your google account and grant access to Yoast SEO. Just do so and get your authorization code. Copy and past it in the required field and click on “Authenticate”.
HOW TO EDIT THE SEO TITLE AND META DESCRIPTION
It is now time to talk about seo title and meta description and here is how is done. First of all let us talk about the focus keyword.
Basically the focus keyword is the keyword you are trying to rank. How do you then get the right keyword? What keyword should you go for in case you are having many options.
Use google autocomplete
First of all, put yourself in your visitors shoes, ask yourself if you are looking for a particular information, what keyword would you type in google? Let us say you are looking for a tutorial on how to use a plugin. For the sake of this post, let us take Yoast SEO plugin. What would you be searching for in google ?
In this case let us type in “yoast seo tutorial”. As you can see in the snapshot below we are having some suggestions from google to our keyword. You can see that people are looking for youtube tutorials and recent tutorial on yoast seo plugin.
If you are writing a post, would you use “yoast seo tutorial youtube” as keyword ? Probably not. The same goes for “yoast seo tutorial 2014” “yoast seo tutorial 2015” “yoast seo tutorial 2016” or “yoast seo tutorial pdf”. At the end we are having ” yoast seo tutorial” ” yoast seo tutorial 2018″ and “wordpress seo tutorial”
Now it is time to figure out the right keyword. First let us enter “yoast seo tutorial” and check the result. As you can see in the snapshot below, using “yoast seo tutorial” as keyword will make us compete with site/blog with high domain authority. So consider using less competitive keyword.
After getting the right keyword, enter it in Focus keyword field as shown in the snapshot below.
How to edit the Seo title and the meta description
In order to edit the meta description and seo title, click on “Edit snippet”, look down and you will see both seo title and “Meta description”. Enter your text there. Keep in mind that a meta description is a resume of your content that will move someone to click on your link while searching the web on google or bing etc …
Make it appealing rather than boring. Make sure you include the focus keyword.
The SEO title is the one shown in search engine result. You can make it different from your initial title.
Note: While entering your SEO title, remember to put the following shortcode.
%%sep%% ——> Stand for the separator
%%sitename%% —-> Stand for the blog/website name
At the end you will be having for instance:” How to make cake %%sep%% %%sitename%%”
ANALYSIS: How to get the green buttons
Yoast SEO plugin is such great that it tells you things you are doing wrong or right. Below is the analysis of the keyword i used for one of my posts.
1.. Focus keyword does not appear in the first paragraph: To fix this, make sure you include the keyword in your first paragraph. This is important because it tells search engines what your content is all about immediately. So make sure your topic is clear.
2.. Keyword density: It is the number of time your keyword appears in your post. For more information about keyword density, please watch this video
3.. The third error is the fact that I have not included the keyword in my meta description. So make sure you include your keyword in your description. Don’t just copy and past but make sure you make a sentence with it in order to avoid a boring meta description.
4.. In this case, my seo title does not have the keyword included.
NOTE: Keep in mind Yoast only detects exact keyword matches so don’t just be after getting the green button.
After checking the keyword, it is now time to check the readability. Analysis one after the other all the errors underline by Yoast SEO.
If you wish to use another title and meta description for your posts on social media, here is how you can do it. Follow the example shown in the snapshot below.
It is true we have a lot of seo plugin for wordpress site but by far I recommend you use Yoast SEO plugin. It has a lot of feature and all these for free. It is also easy to setup. If you are considering to upgrade to the premium version, please do well to check the table below or read this post.
That will be all for today’s post, if you did enjoy it, please share with your friends by making use of the social share buttons. Don’t forget to subscribe to receive updates from us. (it’s free) Let me know what you think or if you have any question regarding the post by leaving a comment in the comment section.