It is a fact that WordPress is still the world’s most widely used blogging platform that powers around 75 million sites. It’s easy to use and there are tons of plugins that you can use to make your website top notch. WordPress by default does not offer many SEO features like adding meta description. In order to show your site properly in search engine result pages (SERPs), you have to use one of the SEO plugins for WordPress.
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SEO Plugins for WordPress
These plugins allow search engines like Google and Bing to properly crawl and index your pages. They tell these search engine’s spiders and crawlers what your website is all about. You’ll find the top 7 of the best SEO plugins available for WordPress on 2018 in this article. We also use some of them on our sites. If you are still asking “What is the best SEO plugin for WordPress?” then let’s discuss them one by one.
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1. Yoast WordPress SEO Plugin
Yoast plugin has been a top notcher on the SEO plugin world, mainly because it is really easy to use, is absolutely efficient, and it is free. It has tons of features that can greatly help you to get your site optimized for search engines. This plugin takes the SEO part while you do the writing. It is a one-stop shop for most of your SEO needs.
- XML Sitemap
- Page analysis
- RSS optimization
- Social integration
- Write better content
- Multisite compatible
- Meta and Link elements
- Technical WordPress SEO
- Import and export functions
From this screenshot, you will notice that you need to fill up at least 2 boxes: Focus keyword and meta description (Snippet). The focus keyword is what your post is all about – it is the main subject of your post. Meta description is the summary of your post that search engines show below the URL and title on SERPs. Meta keywords is an option section which can be enabled or disabled in settings. Yoast’s WordPress SEO counts how many times the focus keyword appear on your post content, title, URL, and meta description and show in the analysis section.
Aside from the focus keyword and meta description, this plugin also shows how good your content is in relation to your focus keyword, how readable the content is, and a ton of other metrics.
Give Yoast’s WordPress SEO plugin a try.
2. All In One SEO Pack Plugin
This is another great SEO tool that offers a ton of tools to get your SEO up and running. It is very similar to Yoast’s plugin and we recommend to choose one of them due to similar functionalities offered by both the plugins.
Here’s what this plugin does:
- Supports XML Sitemap submission to search engines
- Support Google Analytics, custom post types and canonical URLs
- Fine tune page navigational links
- SEO integration for ecommerce sites
- In-built Nonce security into the plugin
- Optimizes titles and generates meta tags automatically
This is also one of the best supported plugin on free WordPress support forum. Now, why don’t you give All In One SEO Pack a try.
3. Squirrly SEO
Despite the oddly spelled name, Squirrly SEO plugin is the only tool that combines content optimization and measure its success. This holds true for human readers as well as robots and spiders of search engines. This is an excellent plugin to create well-balanced and well-optimized articles – balancing between what bots and human readers search for in an article.
Here are their cool features:
- Optimizes your articles for bots and humans
- Analyzes single articles
- Helps to find copyright free images for using on your site
- It helps build a great content by giving advices
- Gives keywords suggestions
- It works with Yoast and All In One SEO Pack plugins
Give Squirrly SEO plugin a try.
4. Broken Link Checker Plugin
Do you feel that broken links are like a bridge without the bridge? It damages the overall user experience, and may end up losing a user, and probably more. Although there are other tools to check this, using a plugin within WordPress will let you run the show within WordPress dashboard. You don’t have to toggle between tabs to check the links.
Broken Link Checker plugin is the go to plugin for this kind of problem. It checks existing posts, comments, and other contents for broken links, and even missing images. Now that is sweet!
- Monitor and helps to find broken links and missing images
- Notifies in dashboard or through email
- Display of broken links in different format in posts to identify them easily
- Stop search engines following the broken links
Do check Broken Link Checker plugin, and give it a try.
Note: Remember plugins like Broken Link Checker will consume lot of server resources and hence blocked by some of the hosting companies like WPEngine. Instead you can use Redirection plugin to automatically setup 301 redirects when the post URL is changed. Use third part broken link checking tools outside WordPress so that it will not affect the hosting.
5. Automatic Image Alt Attributes
Did you know that putting an image in your post, no matter how beautiful it is, search engines will not know what it is? Here’s where the title and ALT attributes comes into play – it tells the search engine what an image is about. It helps define what users will see if the image is not visible. Very simple to use, but highly effective with the results.
Adding alt tag is a hassle in WordPress that you should do it when uploading the image. Most us tend to forget it and the page will get SEO errors without alt tag on images. The solution here is to update the alt tag automatically from the title of your image. There are many SEO plugins out there to do this and Automatic image ALT attributes is one of the easy one. You ever need to worry about the alt tag anymore.
Give Automatic image ALT attributes plugin a try!
Note: If you already have hundreds of thousands of images without alt tag then use SEO Image Toolbox plugin to update the alt tag in bulk.
6. Smush Image Compression and Optimization
Smush is a free plugin that helps to optimizes the images on your WordPress site. Compressing the images will save server bandwidth and loads the pages faster. Users and search engines love fast loading webpages.
Below are some of the features of Smush plugin.
- Resize and compress images uploaded in any of the media library folders
- Bulk as well as manual compression allowed
- Automatic compression when uploading the images
- Compression is done outside your server hence will not consume high resources for your hosting
Try the must have Smush plugin from WPMU DEV.
7. W3 Total Cache
The SEO plugins list will not be completed without including caching plugin. And W3 Total Cache (W3TC) is one of the top notch plugins for WordPress caching. It has numerous settings often tend to break your site if not setup properly. But it has all the needed options for speeding up your WordPress site for better SEO.
- Page caching, browser caching, database caching and many other options.
- Enable compressions to reduce the file size
- Minify CSS and JS files
- Combine CSS and JS files
You may find a lot of SEO plugins out there, but be careful when using them. Not all of them are created equal, nor of the same quality. What is your favorite plugin? Which of these helped you boost your site’s SEO? Tell us in the comments section below. We would love to hear them.