Yoast SEO is the best SEO plugin for WordPress blog. You can easily optimize SEO of your blog without WordPress SEO expert.
Install free Yoast SEO plugin on your blog. But you have to setup Yoast SEO plugin correctly.
I’m using this plugin in all of my blogs and websites of my clients. The feature they have provided are mind-blowing. You will become WordPress SEO expert with this single tool.
In this post, I’m gonna show you complete free guide to setup Yoast SEO plugin correctly. So you can easily setup Yoast SEO plugin and optimize SEO of your WordPress blog without investing a single penny.
Before the start, you should know about Yoast SEO plugin and its cool features.
- About Yoast SEO Plugin And It’s Features
- Step By Step Setup Yoast SEO Plugin Correctly In 2018
- 1. Dashboard
- 2. General
- 3. Features
- 4. Your Info
- 5. Webmaster Tools
- 6. Security setting
- Titles & Metas
- 7. General
- 8. Homepage
- 9. Post Types
- 10. Taxonomy
- 11. Archives
- 12. Other
- 13. Accounts
- 14. Facebook
- 15. Twitter
- 16. Pinterest
- 17. Google Plus
- XML Sitemaps
- 18. General
- 19. Post Types
- 20. Exclude Posts
- 21. Taxonomies
- 22. Breadcrumb
- 23. Permalinks
- 24. RSS
- 25. Bulk Editor
- 26. File Editor
- 27. Import And Export
- Search Console
- 28. Settings
- AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages)
About Yoast SEO Plugin And It’s Features
Yoast SEO plugin is the original WordPress SEO plugin since 2008 by Joost De Valk. It is installed by 5+ million users till the date of written this post (i.e. 10 Feb 2018).
This free SEO plugin is used by so many famous blogs and websites on various niche around the world and has the rating of 4.9 by 18,683 votes.
You will get these features with Yoast SEO plugin.
You can easily create quality content with the help of Yoast SEO Plugin.
Step By Step Setup Yoast SEO Plugin Correctly In 2018
Install Yoast SEO plugin on your WordPress blog and activate it. If you using another SEO plugin, you can migrate all data to Yoast SEO Plugin.
Go to Yoast SEO > Tools >Import from other SEO plugins. Follow the steps as in the image below to transfer data to Yoast SEO plugin.
Let’s start complete configuration of Yoast SEO plugin.
You don’t have to do anything in this section.
But if you have not changed your blog permalink after creating the blog on WordPress then it will show the problem in this section of Yoast SEO plugin.
Make sure you have already
- Deleted All Unwanted Data.
- Created SEO friendly permalinks on your WordPress blog.
- Untick Prevent Search Engine From Wrong Indexing
In general section, you can do the essential setup of Yoast SEO quickly. Click on “Open configuration wizard” and configure Yoast SEO step-by-step. But for the complete setup, you should follow all steps I have explained here.
Before quick setup add your blog Google Search Console.
Enable Advanced settings from Yoast. Generally, all other options are enabled after installing Yoast SEO plugin.
You can enable or disable any of them. But it is better to leave them to enable coz it will be helpful for future use.
Readability Analysis and Keyword Analysis will help provide you suggestion on readability and keyword while creating content. It will assist you to create SEO friendly quality contents.
Advanced settings will enable more advanced features like sitemap, meta description etc.
Ryte integration checks and notify you about site indexing related issues on search engines. Leave it to enable.
Admin bar provides you some links to third-party tools by using them you can analysis your content and also keyword research. Enable it and check those tools. It will also provide you any new notification in admin bar so it will easily noticeable.
Cornerstone content should be enabled. You can mark the best quality content of your WordPress blog as Cornerstone content while creating a quality blog post. The only mark on those content on your blog which you think as the mind-blowing. Read more about how cornerstone content can help you improve your site structure.
Text link counter will help you create internal link building on your blog. You can easily find the number of internal link entering or leaving from a post to another post on your blog.
4. Your Info
Fill out all data correctly.
Select company or person, whatever suited according to your present status. For the company, use logo of 200x200px.
5. Webmaster Tools
Submit your blog to various webmasters as given below and get the verification code.
Add Your Website To Google Search Console
- Click on Google Search Console (Bing/Yandex have the same process) and log in from your Gmail account.
- Select the “HTML tag” verification process from Alternate methods tab as below
- Copy the code and paste into the Google Search Console field on Yoast SEO
- Delete everything outside of the quotations (including the quotations) as you seen in above image
- Save changes in Yoast.
- Click “Verify” in Google Search Console
6. Security setting
You can enable it for a multi-author blog. But it is better to disable it if you don’t trust your editors with the things like noindex.
Titles & Metas
Disable force rewrite titles. If you have duplicate site names in SEO titles, enabling it will be taken care of it. Duplicate site name may appear while creating any new page or post. You can fix this issue by force rewrite titles. According to Yoast it may slower site speed.
You can overcome such issue by simply creating SEO titles manually while creating a page and categories. It will also use to create eye-catching titles rather than using automated SEO titles.
Use any title separator for your blog. I’m using the first one as you have seen in the image above.
Insert your site title and tagline separated by using title separator from Yoast SEO plugin as below.
If you have set a static front page and blog page already, then you will see as below. Click on “editing the front page itself” option and edit SEO titles and meta description of your homepage.
9. Post Types
Setup all options as the image below.
Meta Robots – You can easily index or noindex any content in the search engine. It will provide crawlers instructions for how to crawl or index web page content. Every post and page should be indexed by search engines. So search engine will index your contents. If you want, you can no index any particular page while creating contents
Date in Snippet Preview – If you enable this, the article’s published date will appear in search result. Hence it can increase the click-through rate (CTR) for latest contents.
But it may decrease CTR for old contents. So update your content after a period of time. It will good for your visitors and also for better for the search engine. I would like to suggest you enable it for the post only.
January 28, 218 is the publish date of above search result.
Yoast SEO Meta Box – It will help you to optimize content. You definitely want this for pages, posts. Enable this one.
Custom Variable – the templates above are only used if you don’t write a custom SEO titles and meta descriptions while creating posts or pages. Yoast provides so many templates you can use. But it is better to create focus keyword optimized SEO titles and meta description rather than using automated.
If you want to use as mine then copy and paste
Title template: %%title%% %%sep%% %%sitename%%
Meta description template: %%excerpt%%
Do noindex categories, tags. Disable format based archive.
You can index the categories. But you have to optimize categories for a keyword by using meta box and also required a lot of contents in that category.
According to Yoast, If you’re running a one author blog, the author archive will be exactly the same as your homepage. This is what’s called a duplicate content problem.
So disable all options here and noindex them to prevent from duplicate content issue.
Do noindex of subpages of archives. Disable everything in this section.
Subpages Of Archives – If you want to prevent /page/2/ and further of any archive to show up in the search results, set this to “noindex”.
Meta Keyword Tags – Google doesn’t use meta keyword tags nowadays. So it is useless.
In social tab, you should add your various social media profiles.It is helpful to add social profiles to Google’s knowledge graph. It allows you to upload custom images to each page/post which makes it’s image thumbnail format properly when that page is shared on social media. You can do the same thing by using Facebook Open Graph, Twitter Cards, and Google+ metadata.
Add all accounts related to your blog in this section from different social media.
Enable Add Open Graph Meta Data from Facebook settings as given below.
It will allow you to add a custom image, tiles, and description inside a post or page. So content image looks great while sharing on Facebook.
Facebook Image Size: 1200 x 630px
You should enable Add Twitter card meta data as below.
It will allow you to modify the custom image, titles and description similar to above. Twitter Image Size : 1024 x 512px
Claim your blog at Pinterest and paste the meta tag on the box and click on save changes button.
Make sure that the Open Graph checkbox on the Facebook tab checked. Coz Pinterest uses Open Graph metadata just like Facebook.
17. Google Plus
Add the URL of your Google Plus page and save it.
You don’t need to have an extra sitemap plugin. Yoast will take care of it. Enable XML sitemap functionality.
Click on the link “XML Sitemap” and check the sitemap of your site.
19. Post Types
Select Media “not in sitemap” from Post types sitemap settings.
Only Posts and Pages should in the sitemap. Exclude any other option available here.
20. Exclude Posts
If you wanna exclude any post from the sitemap, simply insert the id of your post separated by the comma.
To find the post ID of any published post, go to Posts > All Posts > click on edit of a published post and get ID (i.e. like post=3087) from URL. Copy the number and paste it as seen in above image.
Select “In sitemap” for categories under taxonomies sitemap settings.
You can enable breadcrumbs settings. It is also helpful to SEO optimization.
Strip the category base from the category URL – Remove category word from URL and make it more SEO friendly. You should remove it right now if your blog has few contents or a new one.
But in case of an old blog, I would like to suggest you do not remove it. Coz when you remove it, the URL’s will be changed and there will 404 error for categories. So you have to set up a 301 redirect for each URL. It will be time taking for an old blog with so many links.
Redirect attachment URLs to parent post URL– enabling this will redirect them to the post they were attached to.
Stop words in slugs – Stop words are non-descriptive words (i.e. like a the, for etc.) you may not want to be included in your permalinks. While you may want to shorten permalinks to be more SEO-friendly.
But I don’t recommend leaving this up to Yoast. Coz it can create your permalinks read weird. It is better to edit words in slugs manually while creating your blog posts.
Remove The ?replytocom Variable – removes these types of URLs: http://creativemantram.com/user-contact-fields-wordpress/#comment-1102 which is good since it prevents duplicate content and improves search engine crawling efficiency.
Redirect ugly URLs to clean permalinks – This option tries to redirect people to the correct URL when people use incorrect parameters at the end of the link of your URL’s. But it is not recommended to use.
Create RSS feed settings as in the image.
Content to put before each post in the feed:
Content to put after each post in the feed:
%%POSTLINK%% from %%BLOGDESCLINK%% and copyrighted by %%AUTHORLINK%%.
25. Bulk Editor
You can edit titles and meta description in bulk (i.e. without having to go through each individual page/post)) from pages/posts.
The more appealing snippet will increase the click-through rate of your content. Don’t forget to insert focus keyword while editing titles or meta description from the bulk editor.
26. File Editor
You can edit robots.txt and .htaccess files from WordPress dashboard.
27. Import And Export
You can easily import or export Yoast SEO settings to any WordPress blog.
You can also migrate the settings from different SEO plugins to Yoast. If you are using a different SEO plugin and want to migrate it to Yoast, make sure it is in the list below.
Click on Get Google Authorization Code and log in with the same Gmail account which is used in Webmaster Tools above.
You will get a code as below. Copy and paste the code into the box as you have seen in above and click Authenticate.
After a few minutes of authenticating Search Console, Google will start to show your crawl errors. You can use Yoast Premium service or redirection plugin to fix the crawl errors by 301 redirections.
You can also buy Yoast SEO premium and use the coolest features at $69/year.
They provide a redirect manager, the option to set multiple focus keywords, social previews, and support from the Yoast team. You can compare the features between free and premium Yoast SEO plugin.
AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages)
Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) are coolest Google Project which will help you to optimize SEO of your blog. It will make your mobile pages load faster. Therefore the bounce rate will be lower.
It will add that nice “AMP” symbol to your mobile snippets as above. You can quickly setup AMP pages with Yoast.
Setup AMP On Your WordPress Blog Quickly
1. Install the AMP Plugin by Automattic
2. Install the Glue For Yoast SEO AMP Plugin.
3. Add /amp/ to any page on your website to see how it looks and make sure it works (you can check amp from this post URL. Type amp/ after this post URL)
4. Go to Yoast > AMP to enable Posts from Post types.
5. Select Yoast > AMP > Design and change the styling to fit your brand. Also, upload a default image for posts that don’t have a featured image.
6. Wait for Google to recrawl your site and add the AMP sign in mobile search results.
7. Visit the “Accelerated Mobile Pages” section in Google Search Console to see errors.
In this post, we have discussed on 27+ steps to setup Yoast SEO plugin correctly in 2018. Now you can use Yoast SEO plugin on any WordPress. Perfect setup will help you to oaccountptimize SEO of your blog and get ranked in search engines.
Have you used Yoast SEO plugin before? Have you used above steps while setup Yoast?
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