Yoast SEO SETTINGS – Installing And Configuring The Plugin
Installing And Configuring The Yoast SEO Settings
The next recommended plugin you should install is for SEO (search engine optimization). I don’t claim to be an SEO expert, but this plugin does all of the heavy work for you if you just follow some basic guidelines. In my opinion, it is the best SEO solution for your WordPress blog. You get tons of built-in features and options. That is why it is by far the most widely used SEO plugin for WordPress. You will find that there is a free and a paid version. I recommend using the free version until you are comfortable with and fully understand the plugin and it’s advanced featuries in the premium version. Now on to the Yoast SEO settings.
You want to make sure you have your site optimized to get better results with search engines like Google. You need to produce a lot of quality content and follow a few simple tips. Installation is simple and I’ll give you some pointers about how to set it up so you don’t get overwhelmed.
Installation And Activation
In your Dashboard, Choose Plugins, hover over it and the menu displays. Choose Add New. Search for the “Yoast SEO Plugin.” Remember to take note when it was last updated and that it is compatible with your version of WordPress. Look for this each time you choose to download and install a plugin. Click Install Now. It will take you to a page showing the installation progress. Click the Activate Plugin link. Then it will take you to the Installed Plugins page.
As you see in the image above, go to the SEO option on your Dashboard. Hover your cursor over the option and a menu appears. Choose “General Settings.“
Yoast SEO Settings
Remember that we chose a self-hosted WordPress site because we want to run our site totally by ourselves. No, we don’t even want to hire a costly developer. Let me assure you that most beginners can usually take care of all their SEO needs on their own. For example, let’s say you’re adding a new post called “Why I Don’t Need To Hire A Developer For My WordPress Blog.” WordPress right straight “out-of-the-box” (even before you have installed a plugin) you can almost optimize the page to perfection.
Under “Latest Changes,” Click the “View Changes.“
Here you can see the awesome updates and changes they recently made to this plugin. I thought I would mention that there is a Yoast eBook bundle available that is excellent for WordPress (WP) You will see a link to the page in the bottom right but if Yoast has changed the page and you don’t see the link, here is the page with a bundle (not an affiliate link) specifically for WordPress users: Optimize Your WordPress Site and Content SEO, for just $29. I have both eBooks personally and they get you up and running with WP very quickly. Highly recommended!
In the Yoast SEO Menu, you will see “Titles and Metas.” This gives you control over your title tag which is very important for SEO. You also have control over your permalinks or URLs, which is also very significant for SEO because you can include your keyword or phrase within it. You also have full control over the content. So, if you’re targeting the keyword “WordPress SEO,” putting the keyword in a heading 1 or H1 tag can give your site a boost. It’s really that easy. You will notice in this post that I also add keywords using H2 tags which also assist my overall SEO plan. You don’t need to know any coding whatsoever or have to hire a web developer; you can take control of your own SEO.
I will be recommending certain settings here that work well for me. You may find other expert advice online that recommends other settings. If you are an advanced user, you can set up the plugin to meet your needs. But, if you are a beginner, then I highly recommend you carefully follow these steps.
Your Info Tab
Here you need to provide a site name and an alternate name for search engines to consider. I usually use my site’s title. If you choose not to enter anything, the WP will automatically use your site’s title as your website name. This will show up in search results.
The next piece of information the plugin needs is for you to determine if your website will be about you, a person, or your business or studio. If you decide to choose “company,” you then provide a company name and will also have the opportunity to upload a logo.
I know that if you are an artist or creative person, there’s a high probability that you don’t consider yourself very “techie.” That’s okay. This is really easy. If you use the Internet and search engines, each popular search engine like Google, Bing, Yahoo, and so on allow you to add your site via webmaster. Your goal is to make your website “findable.” You want people to visit your site. If they don’t know it exists or where to find you, it will be rare that someone visits.
Webmaster Tools let you see very important data and insights about your site from specific search engines. If you want to access this data, you will be required to verify your site. To do this, you have several options. Uploading a file is the easiest and most comfortable for most beginners so I will show you this Recommended Method.
Once you decide which search engines you would like to use, sign up for their webmaster tools. In my example, I’ll show you how to sign up with Google. First, you need a gmail email account. After you have created or chosen the gmail account you would like to use, log in and then sign up here for Webmaster Tools. After you add your site, then watch this short presentation to verify your site:
Next, you need to add your XML Sitemap. If you have installed Yoast SEO, then you can find your XML Sitemap in the SEO Menu. Here are instructions about how to add your XML Sitemap to Google. After you have finished adding your sitemap, it may take a while for Google to display your site data.
The rest of the settings I recommend you leave at the default. This is all you need to do to add your WordPress site to Google webmaster tools. Once your data starts coming in, you will see the power of this plugin and use the results to improve your site performance.
More Advanced Yoast SEO Settings…
If you are a more experienced site or blog owner, I would like to suggest you head over to the post, Advanced Yoast SEO Plugin Setup. There you will find an informational post and video to assist you in having more insight into all that the plugin can do for your site SEO.
The next post in this series of setting up your WordPress site correctly will tell you how to speed up your site so that your visitors have a better experience and they will stay on your site longer.
All of the last few steps are very important for your site and your future success. If you take your time and build your site on a solid foundation, you will feel more confident and see better results quicker than if you would have rushed the process, not learned the importance of each step, and just put up a quick site. You will not regret taking the time to do each step correctly.
If you are an experienced WordPress owner, please add any additional comments or suggestions below. We can all learn from your experience. Thank you for liking, sharing, and following.
As always, wishing you prosperity and online success,