How to Install and Set Up Yoast SEO Plugin in WordPress.
Do you want to adequately install and set up Yoast SEO plugin in WordPress? In this article, we will show you how to make use of Yoast SEO plugin.
Yoast is a comprehensive WordPress SEO plugin. Yoast is a complete solution for WordPress websites when it comes to SEO problems. At Maxietech, we use the Yoast SEO plugin. In this article we will discuss the way to install and set up Yoast SEO plugin in WordPress.
Yoast SEO plugin has numerous amazing features that are useful for your blog. The features include:
- Focus keyword testing
- Title and meta description supports
- SEO post title and meta description change
- Google results snippet previews
- Permalink clean ups while still allowing for Google custom search
- Breadcrumb support (with configurable breadcrumb titles)
- Meta Robots configuration:
- Easily noindex, or nofollow pages, taxonomies or entire archives
- Easily add noodp, noydir meta tags
- RSS footer/header configuration
- XML Sitemaps with:
- Pages or posts that have been noindexed will not show in XML sitemap (but can can be enabled if you want them to)
- Configuration removal of post types and taxonomies
- Ability to verify Google Webmaster Tools, Bing Webmaster Tools and Yahoo Site Explorer
- XML News Sitemaps
There are some other astonishing features of the Yoast SEO plugin that are meant for the premium versions of the Yoast SEO plugin. They are:
- There is premium support provided by folks at Yoast some as to help you make the most out of your site’s SEO
- Video tutorials to help you understand each feature of the Yoast SEO plugin
- There is also a redirect manager that allows you to easily set up redirects.
Let us get started. The following steps are compiled for you to understand and use to install the Yoast SEO plugin on your WordPress website.
A. How to Install Yoast SEO Plugin
First log, in to your WordPress website and go to plugin. Then click on Add New. A page will load up on your screen. Go to the search option at the extreme upper right hand side of the page, then search for the Yoast SEO plugin (or whatever plugin you like to install). Locate the Yoast SEO plugin, then click the Install Now button.
WordPress will now download and install the plugin for you. After this, you will see the success message with a link to activate the plugin or return to plugin installer. The Yoast SEO plugin will be installed but will not work unless you activate it. You can go ahead and click activate to activate the Yoast SEO plugin.
Upon activation, you will notice a new menu item in the WordPress admin bar labelled SEO with the Yoast logo on it. The Yoast SEO plugin is now activated, then let us consider how to set up the Yoast SEO plugin.
B. How to set up the Yoast SEO Plugin.
As a beginner, we have provided a recommended step by step set up on this Yoast SEO plugin. Follow the steps as we discuss them. Yes, let’s get started on how to set up the Yoast SEO plugin.
Step 1: The General Settings
On the WordPress admin area click on the SEO icon. The settings page of the plugin will be displayed and you will see various tabs there at the top side of the page. Click on General tab and you will find “Configuration wizard”, “Credits”, “Restore factory settings” options. Ignore them all. The purpose of clicking the general tab is just to familiarize yourself to the tab.
Step 2: Features
Click on the Features tab to see some features of the plugin to be enabled. Enable the advanced settings page. Then click on save button.
If you have done this successfully, you will notice some new items under the SEO option in your WordPress menu. The items include Titles and meta, XML sitemaps, Social, Advanced, and Tools. We shall discuss more on that later.
Step 3: Your Info
Switch to your info by clicking on the tab Your Info which is beside the Features tab. Here, you will have to provide a site name and alternate name for the search engines to consider. You must enter your website name and a suitable alternative name for your website. For example, our own website name is Maxietech. Hope you understand the meaning of website name by now.
If you do not enter any name here, the Yoast SEO will automatically use your site’s title as your website name. Search engine like google uses GOOGLE as your website name.
In addition, you will have to specify whether the website is run by a company or individual person. If the website is run by a company, you will have to supply the company name. you can also add the company logo also.
Specifying that a person is the one running the website will make you add the name of the person behind the website.
Step 4: Webmaster Tools
Switch to Webmaster tools by clicking on the tab Webmaster console. This Webmaster tools allows your website to be added to search engines like Google, Yandex, Bing, and Alexa. Site owners can add their website to the search engines. You can use our guide to add your website to the Webmaster console.
The Webmaster console allows you to see insights and other relevant data about your website from a specific search engine. Add meta tags or upload a file in order to verify your website and see those exclusive data.
Yoast SEO plugin has made it easy for beginners to add meta tags. You can simply add the meta code that you received from the search engines in the respective fields.
Step 5: Security
Switch to security which is the last tab on the page of the general settings. You will find “Advanced part of the Yoast SEO meta box”. the option is disabled as a default setting. We recommend that you should leave this option remain disabled. This will prevent your authors from making advanced changes like noindex and canonical settings which is preferred and great.
Step 6: Titles and Metas
The title and metas’ Yoast SEO section has 6 tabs under it. Scroll down from your WordPress admin menu down to where you can see the SEO. Place your mouse on the SEO option and the Title and Metas. you can already see the tabs there.
On the general tab, you will find the “Title separator” where you can choose any symbol you would like to use as separator between titles. At default, the separator is dash. You can change it to any suitable one you like.
You can also find the “Enabled Analysis”. Leave the readability analysis and the keyword analysis “enabled”. Readability analysis and the keyword analysis are very important when you write your blog posts.
2. Homepage Title
The next thing after the General tab is the Homepage Title tab. Here, you can define the title for the homepage of the website. The fields are pre-filled with title-template by default settings. You may want to create a static title, description and keywords. Have it mind that your title for the posts you write will vary from one post to the other.
The title templates allow you to define the title and other meta information and organize them. In the image below, the template variables in the title field work for most websites.
Enter your site description and save the changes.
3. Post Types Titles & Metas
Yoast SEO plugin allows you to set titles and meta for pages, posts, media and other custom posts. If you forgot to add title and meta description for individual post, the site-wide title and meta description will be used.
By default, WordPress have several post types (for example post, page attachments, revisions and navigation menus. You can also define your own custom post types.
Check the Meta Robots and select “index”, Data in Snippet Preview you can enable or disable (either of the way) and also find the Yoast SEO Meta Box then select “show”
We here by recommend that you should leave this field blank as it appears in the picture below. It is also recommended that you should the post title as the title template.
On this tab, the titles and meta for categories, tags, custom, taxonomies and post format archives can be configured. The default title template should work for majority of websites. As for the “meta description template”, the description is picked from the categories and tags by Yoast SEO.
The Yoast SEO does not add meta description in archives for these terms if you do not have any description for terms in your categories, tags, or custom taxonomies.
This tab offers you to have access to the title and meta settings for author and date archive pages, and special pages like the search and 404 pages.
On the Author archives settings, disable the “author archives” if you are running a single author blog. If this is s, then the main blog and the author archives contains the same contents. Disabling this option will prevent duplicate content.
The “other tab” is the last on the Titles and meta Yoast SEO option. This options are recommended to be left as they are if you have no clue of what to do about them. It involves the picking of descriptions from the Dmoz or Yahoo directories for your pages. Leave this options “unticked”.
Step 7: Social
With the Yoast SEO plugin, your website can be integrated with Facebook, Twitter, Google +, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and all other social media platforms. Click on the “Social” found in the WordPress menu. This will take you to set up these platforms mentioned above.
On the Account tab, you will find all your social media accounts there. Adding the URLs in the blank spaces supplied will allows Yoast SEO to tell Google about your social profiles. Some of the popular social media could be your main social media profiles of your website.
The next tab to the right of the Account is the Facebook. On this tab, make sure you enable the add Open Graph meta data. This will allow you to add the Facebook open graph meta data in your website’s <head> section. Through this, Facebook will pick up appropriate thumbnail and page information when a post from your website is shared on Facebook.
The next option is to provide a thumbnail for your homepage with SEO title and description. This image and description will be used when someone shares the homepage of your blog or website on Facebook. After that, you can provide a default thumbnail image URL. This image is going to be used for all articles that do not have a thumbnail or any other image affixed to it.
You can now associate your website with a Facebook profile. You can equally add a Facebook admin that will give you access to Facebook insights for your blog.
Enable the add Twitter card meta data. The twitter account makes use if Twitter cards. You can add the Twitter cards into your sites <head> section. The card types can also be chosen. We recommend you to use the summary option of the default card type to use.
Switch to the Pinterest tab by clicking on it. The Pinterest uses the open graph meta data just like the Facebook. Make sure you have enabled the open graph meta data box under the Facebook settings. Then you just need to enter the website verification code provided by Pinterest. You can simply visit your Pinterest account settings to add and verify your website. Doing this will provide you with a meta tag that you need to enter here. Then don’t forget to press the save button.
5. Google +
Enter your Google + URL in space provided and set the Google + option and save the changes.
Step 8: XML Sitemaps
the sitemaps help you to index and notify search engines about your content. Sitemaps are very important in WordPress websites. Through this search engines, your website’s contents can be prioritized. Enable the XML sitemap functionality to use this option.
Let us take you down to the steps to do that.
Click on User Sitemap tab beside the General Tab. Disable the Author / user sitemap.
Proceed to the post types tab and disable any post type that you don’t want to include into the sitemap. By default, the media attachment is disabled already.
On the other tabs, you will find the taxonomy tab. Click on it do the same process you do for post types. i.e if there is any taxonomy you don’t want to be included in the sitemaps, then disable it.
There is the Excluded posts tab which allows you to remove individual posts, pages, or custom post types from the XML sitemap. You can simply enter the post IDs in the space provided and don’t forget to save changes.
Step 9: Advanced
The Advanced settings page allows you to configure the breadcrumbs, permalinks and the RSS feed related settings.
Breadcrumbs are very useful for internal linking. Linking one or two articles on your websites make readers want to read more of your posts. It provides a clear path to the page. To use this option, you will have to Enable Breadcrumbs.
We recommend that you should use the default settings there as it would work for majority of websites. Click the save button to save changes.
This section offers some variety of options. Let us look into that and see what we have on it.
On this page, you can keep or remove the strip the category base from category URL. The next option available is the redirect attachment URLs to parent post URL. Click on Redirect to enable this option. All your attachment page URL will be redirected to the original post URL
On the cleanup permalinks option, you can keep or remove stop words from permalinks. The stop words are the common words used in plain language. Removing these words is believed to create cleaner URLs.
The RSS is being used by the content scrappers to copy contents from your website. The Yoast plugin allows you to add a backlink to the website for each of the posts you published.
With this, you will get backlinks from their sites and Google will acknowledged that you are the ultimate original source. There are several options to add your author links, post links, and blog description.
Step 10: Tools
If you have been paying out-most attention towards the steps from the beginning, then it must have been fun adding every options and settings made available by Yoast SEO Plugin. You may probably want to export the settings as Backup. You can also export settings to use it as an initial guideline for all of your future websites that you are going to use this plugin on.
In the image above, the bulk editor allows you edit post titles and description in bulk. This option is not recommended as duplicate descriptions can cause damage to your SEO.
The file editor is also not recommended to tamper with as slight mistakes can render your website inaccessible for search engines.
Step 11: Search Console
This option allows you to connect your WordPress website to Google Search Console tools (also known to be webmaster tools. You can add your website there and use Yoast SEO to verify it.
This is how it is done. Simply click on get Google Authorization code and you will be redirected to the search console website. There, you will get a code. Copy the code and paste it in the plugin settings to complete the verification.
If this step is successfully completed, then you will, be asked tom select a profile. You will need to select your website from a drop-down menu.
After that, the Yoast SEO will now extract your Search Console data into WordPress. You will now be able to see Desktop, Mobile, Feature Phone tabs on screen. This page is where you can see the crawl errors related to your websites and mark them as fixed after setting up redirects.
Step 12: Redirects
The premium version of this plugin allows you to use the redirect option perfectly. You can quickly set up redirects on your WordPress websites. The 404 error can be easily accessed and fixed in your Google Search Console. Just set up redirects and mark them as fixed in search console. Check the image below for easy guide.
Also with premium version of this plugin we have discussed in this article, you can add up to 5 focus keywords to every single post.
We hope this guide has helped you install and setup the Yoast SEO plugin successfully.
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