Introduction to the Yoast SEO Plugin
Yoast SEO is a powerful plugin that can help improve your WordPress website’s search engine optimization (SEO) and boost your online visibility. In this short guide, we’ll walk you through the essential steps to use Yoast SEO effectively on your site, from installation to optimization.
Step 1: Install and Activate Yoast
1.1. Log in to your WordPress admin dashboard.
1.2. In the left-hand sidebar, navigate to “Plugins” and click “Add New.”
1.3. In the search bar, type “Yoast SEO” and press Enter.
1.4. Click “Install Now” next to the Yoast SEO plugin, and then click “Activate” once it’s installed.
Step 2: Configure SEO Settings
2.1. After activation, a new tab labelled “Yoast SEO” will appear in your WordPress dashboard on the left-hand side towards the bottom. Click on it to access Yoast SEO settings.
2.2. In the “General” tab, navigate to the “Features” tab and enable the features you want to use, such as SEO analysis, readability analysis, and XML sitemaps.
2.3. Set your website’s environment by clicking on the “Your Info” tab and providing details like your site name and the company or person behind the website.
Step 3: Set Up XML Sitemaps
3.1. In the “General” tab, click on the “First-time installation” tab. Follow the wizard through setting up the plugin. The dashboard will also let you know any problems with the setup.
3.2. Click on settings and navigate to site features. You can go through and Enable the features that you require. You can also enable the XML sitemaps feature at the bottom of this section. Yoast SEO will automatically generate a sitemap for your website, which helps search engines index your content. You can view the sitemap and then copy and submit it to your google site console.
3.3 There is an academy option where you can learn more about Yoast and SEO in general.
Step 4: Optimize Individual Pages and Posts
4.1. Create or edit a page or post on your WordPress website.
4.2. Scroll down to the Yoast SEO box located below the content editor.
4.3. In the “SEO” tab, you can:
- Add a focus keyword: This is the main keyword you want the page or post to rank for.
- Write a compelling SEO title and meta description: Make them engaging and include your focus keyword.
4.4. In the “Readability” tab, you’ll receive suggestions to improve the readability of your content. Follow these recommendations for a better user experience.
Step 5: Use the SEO Analysis Tool
5.1. In the Yoast SEO box, click on the “SEO analysis” tab.
5.2. Review the feedback and suggestions provided to improve your content’s SEO. This tool helps you optimize your content for both users and search engines.
Step 6: Preview Your Content
6.1. Before publishing, click the “Preview” button to see how your page or post will appear in search engine results.
6.2. Ensure that your SEO title and meta description look appealing and include your focus keyword.
Step 7: Publish Your Content
7.1. Once you’re satisfied with your content and SEO settings, click “Publish.”
Yoast SEO is a valuable tool for WordPress owners looking to increase* their SEO efforts. Following this guide and regularly optimising your content using the Yoast SEO plugin, you can improve your website’s search engine rankings and attract more organic traffic.
*SEO ranking improvements are not guaranteed.
If you require further help utilising the full capabilities of Yoast and other SEO plugins then contact us to book in for an SEO appointment.