WordPress 5.0 Beta 3 is now available!

This software is still in development, so we don’t recommend you run it on a production site. Consider setting up a test site to play with the new version.

There are two ways to test the WordPress 5.0 Beta: try the WordPress Beta Tester plugin (you’ll want “bleeding edge nightlies”), or you can download the beta here (zip).

WordPress 5.0 is slated for release on November 19, and we need your help to get there. Here are some of the big issues that we’ve fixed since Beta 2:

Block Editor

The block editor has been updated to include all of the features and bug fixes from the upcoming Gutenberg 4.2 release. Additionally, there are some newer bug fixes and features, such as:

  • Adding support for the “Custom Fields” meta box.
  • Improving the reliability of REST API requests.
  • A myriad of minor tweaks and improvements.

Twenty Nineteen

Twenty Nineteen has been updated from its GitHub repository, this version is full of new goodies to check out:

  • Adds support for Selective Refresh Widgets in the Customiser.
  • Adds support for Responsive Embeds.
  • Tweaks to improve readability and functionality on mobile devices.
  • Fixes nested blocks appearing wider than they should be.
  • Fixes some errors in older PHP versions, and in IE11.

How to Help

Do you speak a language other than English? Help us translate WordPress into more than 100 languages! 

If you’re able to contribute with coding or testing changes, we have a multitude of bug scrubs scheduled this week, we’d love to have as many people as we can ensuring all bugs reported get the attention they deserve.

If you think you’ve found a bug, you can post to the Alpha/Beta area in the support forums. We’d love to hear from you! If you’re comfortable writing a reproducible bug report, file one on WordPress Trac, where you can also find a list of known bugs.


WordPress Five Point Oh
is just two short weeks away.
Thank you for helping!
💖

This week, we talk about the updates in the Genesis Framework. Also, learn what StudioPress is planning to do with it. Of course, we have some Gutenberg and WordPress 5.0 news as well. Let’s dive in!

Genesis Framework receiving love again

One of the oldest WordPress theme frameworks out there is the Genesis Framework by StudioPress. In fact, it’s been around for almost 9 years now! A couple of months ago, WP Engine acquired StudioPress and with that, the Genesis Framework started receiving much-needed attention again.

This week, the 2.7 beta was released which prepares it for the future, for the most part. Additionally, they announced that the framework will get an overhaul from an SEO point of view. Something we applaud, of course.

In related news, Array Themes is now part of StudioPress as well. Or WP Engine, depending on how you look at it. This is great news for StudioPress’s portfolio with both Mike McAllister (the owner of Array Themes) and the themes themselves.

And, as I understand it, most of the Array themes will be ported over to a Genesis Child theme as well. You can read more about that in Mike’s announcement post. As an early adopter of, and contributor to the Genesis Framework, I’m very excited to see where this is going.

A large portion of improving Genesis will go into integrating it with the Gutenberg editor. Both internally in Genesis as well as with the Atomic Blocks plugin that came over from Array Themes to StudioPress.

Gutenberg updates

My roundup wouldn’t be complete – as we’re ramping up to the release of WordPress 5.0 – without mentioning Gutenberg’s latest updates. One of my favorite improvements is this one:

The inserter between blocks has been tweaked so that the experience is consistent with all “add block” buttons — it opens the full inserter now.

For a full overview, read the release post here.

WordPress 5.0 schedule

Just as Gutenberg is being updated and refined, so is WordPress 5.0. Here you’ll find the release schedule for WordPress 5.0. The release is still being slated for November 19. Which is in 17 days!

The post Remkus’ Roundup: Genesis, Gutenberg, WordPress 5.0 appeared first on Yoast.

To keep everyone aware of big projects and efforts across WordPress contributor teams, I’ve reached out to each team’s listed representatives. I asked each of them to share their Top Priority (and when they hope for it to be completed), as well as their biggest Wins and Worries. Have questions? I’ve included a link to each team’s site in the headings.

Accessibility

  • Contacted: @joedolson, @audrasjb, @arush
  • Priority: Work on authoring a manual for assistive technology users on Gutenberg, led by Claire Brotherton (@abrightclearweb). Continue to work on improving the overall user experience in Gutenberg. Update and organize the WP A11y handbook.
  • Struggle: Lack of developers and accessibility experts to help test and code the milestone issues. Still over 100 outstanding issues, and developing the Gutenberg AT manual helps expose additional issues. The announcement of an accessibility focus on 4.9.9 derailed our planning for Gutenberg in September with minimal productivity, as that goal was quickly withdrawn from the schedule.
  • Big Win: Getting focus constraint implemented in popovers and similar components in Gutenberg.

CLI

  • Contacted: @danielbachhuber, @schlessera
  • Priority: Current priority is v2.1.0 of WP-CLI, to polish the major refactoring v2.0.0 introduced. You can join in or follow progress on their site.
  • Struggle: Getting enough contributors to make peer-review possible/manageable.
  • Big Win: The major refactoring of v2 was mostly without any negative impacts on existing installs. It provided substantial improvements to maintainability including: faster and more reliable testing, more straight-forward changes to individual packages, and simpler contributor on-boarding.

Community

Core

  • Contacted: @jeffpaul
  • Priority: Continued preparation for the 5.0 release cycle and Gutenberg.
  • Struggle: Identifying tasks for first time contributors, as well as for new-to-JS contributors.

Design

  • Contacted: @melchoyce, @karmatosed, @boemedia, @joshuawold, @mizejewski
  • Priority: Preparing for WordPress 5.0 and continuing to work on better onboarding practices.
  • Struggle: Identifying tasks for contributor days, especially for small- to medium-sized tasks that can be fit into a single day.
  • Big Win: Regular contributions are starting to build up.

Documentation

  • Contacted: @kenshino
  • Priority: Getting HelpHub out before WordPress 5.0’s launch to make sure Gutenberg User Docs have a permanent position to reside
  • Struggle: Getting the documentation from HelpHub into WordPress.org/support is more manual than initially anticipated.
  • Big Win: Had a good discussion with the Gutenberg team about their docs and how WordPress.org expects documentation to be distributed (via DevHub, Make and HelpHub). Getting past the code blocks to release HelpHub (soon)

Hosting

  • Contacted: @mikeschroder, @jadonn
  • Priority: Helping Gutenberg land well at hosts for users in 5.0.
  • Struggle: Short time frame with few resources to accomplish priority items.
  • Big Win: Preparing Try Gutenberg support guide for hosts during the rollout and good reception from users following it.

Marketing

  • Contacted: @bridgetwillard
  • Priority: Continuing to write and publish case studies from the community.
  • Big Win: Onboarding guide is going well and is currently being translated.

Meta (WordPress.org Site)

  • Contacted: @tellyworth, @coffee2code
  • Priority: Support for other teams in the lead up to, and the follow-up of, the release of WP 5.0. ETA is the WP 5.0 release date (Nov 19) and thereafter, unless it gets bumped to next quarter.
  • Struggle: Maintaining momentum on tickets (still).
  • Big Win: Launch of front-end demo of Gutenberg on https://wordpress.org/gutenberg/

Mobile

  • Contacted: @elibud
  • Priority: Have an alpha version of Gutenberg in the WordPress apps, ETA end of year 2018.
  • Struggle: Unfamiliar tech stack and the goal of reusing as much of Gutenberg-web’s code as possible.
  • Big Win: Running mobile tests on web’s PRs.

Plugins

  • Contacted: @ipstenu
  • Priority: Cleaning up ‘inactive’ users, which was supposed to be complete but some work preparing for 5.0 was necessary.
  • Struggles: Devnotes are lacking for the upcoming release which slows progress.
  • Big Win: No backlog even though a lot were out!

Polyglots

Support

  • Contacted: @clorith
  • Priority: Preparing for the upcoming 5.0 release
  • Struggle: Finding a good balance between how much we want to help people and how much we are able to help people. Also, contributor recruitment (always a crowd favorite!)
  • Big Win: How well the team, on a global level, has managed to maintain a good flow of user engagement through support.

Theme Review

  • Contacted: @acosmin, @rabmalin, @thinkupthemes, @williampatton
  • Priority: Implementing the Theme Sniffer plugin on WordPress.org which is one step forward towards automation. ETA early 2019
  • Struggle: Not having so many contributors/reviewers.
  • Big Win: Implementing multiple requirements into our review flow, like screenshots and readme.txt requirements.

Training

  • Contacted: @bethsoderberg, @juliek
  • Priority: Getting the learn.wordpress.org site designed, developed, and being able to publish lesson plans to it.
  • Struggle: Getting contributors onboard and continually contributing. Part of that is related to the learn.wordpress.org site. People like to see their contributions.
  • Big Win: We have our new workflow and tools in place. We are also streamlining that process to help things go from idea to publication more quickly.

Interested in updates from the last quarter? You can find those here: https://wordpress.org/news/2018/07/quarterly-updates-q2-2018/

Here it is: our brand-new, better-than-ever Site structure training course! Want to find out how to make sure visitors and Google find their way around your site? In Yoast Academy’s new Site structure training, you’ll find out how to improve your rankings by creating the optimal site structure!

You can get the course for $129, but only in the first week, so don’t wait too long!

Why should I be excited about the new Site structure training?

Creating and maintaining a solid site structure is crucial. A clear site structure benefits your users, but is also important for SEO reasons. Search engines need a clear site structure to find your content and put it in their index. If you don’t have a clear site structure, chances are that Google won’t find your page, and this means people won’t see your page in the search results!

Still, site structure seems to be an afterthought for a lot of people. And this leads to SEO problems. Even if you set up a good structure, a growing site can quickly become a mess. Site structure isn’t something that can be taken care of automatically, you need to do this yourself. This new training will teach you everything you need to know about creating and maintaining a solid site structure. So, with this new Site structure course you really have a chance of getting ahead of your competition!

Why did we renew the Site structure training?

Site structure has changed a lot over the years, as has our understanding of it. Currently, SEO is all about context. Context, and the context of links, is what helps search engines make sense of things. Because of all these changes, we needed to revise our existing Site structure course. We did a lot of research, which resulted in a completely new approach to site structure. And because site structure works differently for different types of website, we cover blogs, eCommerce sites and other types of websites.

What will I learn in the new Site structure training?

The new Site structure training course is an online training you’ll get access to for a full year. You’ll learn how to create a perfect site structure from scratch, how to improve an existing site structure, and how to maintain your site structure. In each module, world-renowned SEO experts like Jono Alderson provide you with theory, best practices and tips.

In this course, we’ve divided site structure into two pillars: organizing your website and setting up a contextual linking structure. First, you’ll learn how to organize your site. How do you go about creating a clear homepage? What about navigation? A clear site organization is crucial for user experience. We’ll also go into taxonomies, and teach you how to use categories and tags correctly, to organize your site even better. Then, we’ll explain how to use contextual linking to show search engines which pages are most important, and to guide visitors and search engines through your site.

Furthermore, you’ll learn how to create different types of landing pages. These are the pages you want your audience to find when they search for specific keywords you’ve optimized for. And last – but certainly not least – we’ll teach you how to maintain your carefully crafted site structure.

Get it before the offer expires!

The Site structure training teaches you exactly how to create a solid site structure, so you can guide visitors to your most important pages and rank better! Make sure your site structure gets the attention it deserves by taking the Yoast Academy Site structure training. Get the course by clicking the button below. It is temporarily discounted at $129, so get it before the offer expires! If you have an All-in-one SEO training bundle, the new course will automatically be added to your account.

The post Out now: our new Site structure training! appeared first on Yoast.

Teams across the WordPress project are working hard to make sure everything is ready for the upcoming release of WordPress 5.0. Find out what’s going on and how you can get involved.


The Plan for WordPress 5.0

Early this month, the planned release schedule was announced for WordPress 5.0, which was updated a few weeks later. WordPress 5.0 is a highly anticipated release, as it’s the official  launch of Gutenberg — the new block editor for WordPress Core. For more detail, check out this  granular timeline.

Along with the planned release schedule, @matt, who is heading up this release, announced leads for critical focuses on the project, including @matveb, @karmatosed, @laurelfulford, @allancole, @lonelyvegan, @omarreiss, @antpb, @pento, @chanthaboune, @danielbachhuber, and @mcsf.

WordPress 5.0 is currently in its second beta phase and will soon move to the release candidate status. Help test this release right now by installing the WordPress Beta Tester plugin on your site.

Want to get involved in building WordPress Core? Follow the Core team blog and join the #core channel in the Making WordPress Slack group. You can also help out by testing or translating the release into a local language.

New Editor for WordPress Core

Active development continues on Gutenberg, the new editing experience for WordPress Core. The latest release is feature complete, meaning that all further development on it will be to improve existing features and fix outstanding bugs.

Some have raised concerns about Gutenberg’s accessibility, prompting the development team to detail some areas in which the new editor is accessible. To help improve things further, the team has made a public call for accessibility testers to assist.

Want to get involved in building Gutenberg? Follow the Gutenberg tag on the Core team blog and join the #core-editor channel in the Making WordPress Slack group. Read this guide to find areas where you can have the most impact.

Migrating HelpHub to WordPress.org

HelpHub is an ongoing project to move all of WordPress’ user documentation from the Codex to the WordPress Support portal.

HelpHub has been developed on a separate staging server and it’s now time to migrate the new documentation to its home on WordPress.org. The plan is to have everything moved over  before WordPress 5.0 is released, so that all the new documentation will be available on the new platform from the start.

The HelpHub team has published a call for volunteers to help with the migration. If you would like to get involved, join the #docs channel in the Making WordPress Slack group, and contact @atachibana to get started.

A New Default Theme for WordPress

A brand new default theme — Twenty Nineteen — has been announced with development being led by @allancole. The theme is packaged with WordPress 5.0, so it will be following the same release schedule as Core.

The new theme is designed to integrate seamlessly with Gutenberg and showcase how you can build a theme alongside the new block editor and take advantage of the creative freedom that it offers.

Want to help build Twenty Nineteen? Join in on the theme’s GitHub repo and join the #core-themes channel in the Making WordPress Slack group.


Further Reading:

  • The Support team are putting together more formal Support Guidelines for the WordPress Support Forums.
  • The group focused on privacy tools in Core has released some details on the work they have been doing recently, with a roadmap for their plans over the next few months.
  • The Core team released an update about how WordPress will be compatible with PHP 7.3.
  • The Theme Review Team have published some new requirements regarding child themes, readme files and trusted authors in the Theme Directory.
  • The WordCamp Europe team are working on a PWA service for all WordCamp websites.

If you have a story we should consider including in the next “Month in WordPress” post, please submit it here.

The snippet is a single search result in a set of search results and generally consists of a title, a URL and a description of the page. The content of a snippet matches parts of the search query and you’ll see your keyword highlighted in the snippet description. Search engines often use pieces of your content to fill in the parts that make up the snippet. In most cases, search engines determine the best possible snippet for you, but you can try to override that by adding a meta description to your page. In this post, we’ll dive deeper into what is a snippet.

snippet in serps

A snippet as found on a search result page

The snippet is one of your most valuable pieces of online real estate. This is the doorway to your site, and you should make it as enticing as possible. You need people to click your link — without misleading them, of course. While search engines have the last say in how these snippets appear, you can give them options. If they deem these worthy, they’ll use it. Even Googles John Mueller says you should fill out your meta description:

Regular snippets, rich snippets, and featured snippets

The snippet in the screenshot you saw at the beginning of this article is a regular, static snippet but there are many variations to be found. Search engines love to experiment with different ways of highlighting particular results within the search results pages.

For some time now, we’ve seen rich results appear in different forms. Rich snippets are regular snippets with added information, like product details, availability, reviews and a lot more. Here’s a rich snippet for the search term [Fender Standard Precision Bass sunburst]. You’ll notice that this snippet is much ‘richer’ so to say. It has ratings, review, pricing, stock availability and some product highlights. This is a specific product rich snippets, but there are similar snippets for recipes, reviews, videos, events, courses and much more. Adding structured data is a necessity for some types of these rich results.

fender precision rich snippet

A rich snippet found while searching for [Fender Standard Precision Bass sunburst]

Another type of snippet is the featured snippet. This is a new kind of result that appears at the top of the search results pages, even before the first organic search result — at position 0 so to say. The content for these featured snippets comes from pages that best answer that specific question in its content. You can’t sign up for this — you have to earn it with your content. Here’s one of our featured snippets, this one for the search term [what is a meta description]. This feature snippet takes the full answer to that question from our article and puts it right at the top of the page.

meta description featured snippet new

A featured snippet for the search term [what is a meta description]

SEO title and meta description

Earlier, I pointed out that search engines sometimes prefer to pick their own text from a website to use in the snippets. While they are pretty apt at making up something nice, in a lot of cases you’d probably want to control how your page appears in search. One of the ways you can influence this is by adding a meta description to your page. This is a short piece of text describing your content in a way that makes it attractive for both searchers as well as search engines. You can also edit the SEO title of your article if you want to override the standard way search engines show your page title. Yoast SEO helps you do all this.

Snippet preview in Yoast SEO

Enter the snippet preview in Yoast SEO:

snippet preview new

The snippet preview gives you an idea of how your post will appear in the search results

The snippet preview in Yoast SEO gives you a good idea of how your post or page might look like in search engines. Also, you can edit the SEO title if you want it to be something else then your regular page title. If you want you can use variables, so you can automate stuff. You’ll also find the meta description field in which you can add the text you want to suggest to search engines to use. Learn how to make your site stand out in search results and how to write an awesome meta description.

Now you know all about the snippet

A snippet is a deceptively simple thing: a single search result. However, it has great power. A good snippet will help you get those clicks. You don’t just want to appear at the top of the search results, no, you want those clicks! And to get people to click, you need a brilliant snippet.

The post What is a snippet? appeared first on Yoast.

WordPress 5.0 Beta 2 is now available!

This software is still in development, so we don’t recommend you run it on a production site. Consider setting up a test site to play with the new version.

There are two ways to test the WordPress 5.0 Beta: try the WordPress Beta Tester plugin (you’ll want “bleeding edge nightlies”), or you can download the beta here (zip).

WordPress 5.0 is slated for release on November 19, and we need your help to get there. Here are some of the big issues that we fixed since Beta 1:

Block Editor

We’ve updated to the latest version of the block editor from the Gutenberg plugin, which includes the new Format API, embedding improvements, and a variety of bug fixes.

Meta boxes had a few bugs, and they weren’t showing at all in the block editor, so we’ve fixed and polished there.

Internationalisation

We’ve added support for registering and loading JavaScript translation files.

Twenty Nineteen

The Twenty Nineteen repository is a hive of activity, there have been a stack of minor bugs clean up, and some notable additions:

  • There’s now a widget area in the page footer.
  • Navigation submenus have been implemented for mobile devices.
  • Customiser options have been added for changing the theme colours and feature image filters.

Everything Else

The REST API has a couple of bug fixes and performance improvements. PHP 7.3 compatibility has been improved.


We’re fixing the bugs:
All the ones you’ve reported.
Some that we’ve found, too.

We’ve got good news for you! Coming November 1st, we’ll release a completely renewed and improved Site structure training. Are you struggling to make your most important pages rank? Are your new articles not showing up properly in the search results? Or do you want to maintain control over your content on your growing website? Then this training is for you. Curious as to why we renewed the training? And to what you’ll learn in this course? Read on!

Why is site structure important?

A solid site structure is crucial for SEO. First of all, it benefits your users: if your site is easy to navigate, visitors will know their way around your website and easily find what they are looking for. In addition, more visitors will end up on the pages you want them to reach, like sales pages. As a result, a good site structure will benefit your SEO. Search engines use so-called user signals to find out how visitors experience your website. If they spend a lot of time on your site and return often, they probably enjoy your site and find it useful. Google uses this information to rank your site higher!

Site structure is also important because search engines need links to find your content and put it in their index, so people can find your site. If you don’t have a clear site structure, chances are that Google can’t find your page, and this means people won’t see your page in the search results! Moreover, by setting up a good linking structure, you can show search engines which of your pages are most important. It helps them understand which pages should rank for important keywords.

Read more: What is the importance of site structure »

In short, you really need a solid site structure, so people and Google understand what they can find on your site. Still, most people seem to forget about their site structure. And unfortunately, this isn’t something a plugin can solve. You need to do this yourself. So, if you want to get ahead of your competition, this Site structure training is your chance!

Why did we create a new course?

Currently, we are in the process of revising our Academy training courses. Site structure has changed a lot over the years, as has our understanding of it. Context in text, and the context of links, has become increasingly important over the last couple of years. We thought the way we ourselves, and other SEO outlets, were approaching site structure left something to be desired. So we decided to completely redefine the concept of site structure in this training.

What’s different in the new course?

In this renewed course, we tackle site structure based on two types of internal linking: organizing and classifying links, and contextual links. On the one hand, you use links in menus, breadcrumbs, and taxonomies to organize your website and make it easy to navigate. On the other hand, you use links within your content to facilitate another way of navigating your site. We also discuss different types of websites, like blogs, online shops, and company website. So, after this training, you’ll know exactly what you should do to improve the structure of your website!

What will I learn?

In this course, we’ll teach you how to organize every aspect of your site, including your homepage, categories, and your site-wide navigation. In addition, you’ll learn how to guide your visitors and Google through your site. We’ll teach you how to choose your most important pages and let Google know which pages you want to pop up highest in the search results. Moreover, you’ll learn how to go about crafting good landing pages for both blogs and eCommerce sites, so people find the pages you want them to find! And last but certainly not least, we’ll teach you how to maintain your site structure. You’ll learn how to use redirects, how to check your internal linking structure, and how to prevent competing with your own content.

Example Site structure Jono Alderson

Online and on-demand

This new Site structure training is an online course that allows you to learn about site structure anytime and anywhere you like. It consists of five modules, which are divided into several lessons. Each lesson contains interesting videos, in which our SEO experts – like Jono Alderson – explain everything you should know about site structure. To improve learning retention, we’ve also created reading materials. In these PDF files, we explore topics more broadly and we use different examples from the ones we use in the videos. To complete a lesson, you take a quiz. These quizzes test whether you understand the theory, and if you’re able to apply this new knowledge to realistic example cases.

Get ready: available November 1st!

Are you ready to help Google understand – and rank! – your site better? We’ll launch this brand-new Site structure training on November 1.

Don’t want to miss the launch? Subscribe to our newsletter!

The post Coming soon: brand-new Site structure training! appeared first on Yoast.

As we’re getting closer to the release of WordPress 5.0, the amount of WordPress 5.0 related news is increasing. Today, we have news for you on the new Default WordPress Theme, the Gutenberg integration of Advanced Custom Fields and GlotPress. Welcome to the third edition of my roundup!

New Default WordPress Theme is here:

Since the release of WordPress 3.0 – hello 2010! – WordPress shipped with a new default theme. We started with Twenty Ten as we’re approaching 2019, WordPress is getting ready to ship the next default theme with WordPress 5.0.

Twenty Nineteen will be a theme that focuses on writing great content for both bloggers and small businesses. And, as you may have been suspecting already, Twenty Nineteen will fully support the new Gutenberg editor. If you’re already curious to see what Twenty Nineteen will look like, do check out the introduction post.

ACF Gutenberg integration

If you’ve been building content-rich WordPress websites, there’s a good chance you’ve been doing this by using the Advanced Custom Fields plugin, or ACF for short. It allows you to easily add all kinds of metaboxes for all types of content. Given the fact that the Gutenberg editing experience changes the way metaboxes look and work, the team behind ACF decided to find a way to integrate ACF with the Gutenberg blocks. And they’ve succeeded.

Our friends at Delicious Brains have written a great post on how ACF lets you create easily create beautiful rich content Gutenberg blocks. I highly encourage you to check it out. It does get a little technical, but ACF’s solution is by far the easiest way to create Gutenberg blocks right now.

By the way, if you are using ACF, have you seen our ACF Content Analysis for Yoast SEO plugin?

WordPress 5.0 Beta 1 has been released

Slightly behind schedule, WordPress 5.0 Beta 1 has been released. From the release post:

There are two ways to test the WordPress 5.0 beta 1: try the WordPress Beta Tester plugin (you’ll want “bleeding edge nightlies”), or you can download the beta here (zip).

It’s important to mention that this software is still in development. So we don’t recommend you run it on a production site. Consider setting up a test site to play with the new version. And if you are using an existing test site be sure to update the Gutenberg plugin to v4.1.1.

If you’re curious about the planning for the release of WordPress 5.0, do check out the granular timeline that’s available.

GlotPress 3.0

There’s a good chance, if English isn’t your first language, that you’re using an internationalized version of WordPress. In other words, WordPress is fully translated in your language. The software that powers the translation of WordPress, but also themes, plugins and more, is called GlotPress.

Greg Ross, who recently took over the lead-developer role from Dominik Schilling, has announced what needs to happen for the next big version of GlotPress. My favorite new feature is for GlotPress to support locale versions. What’s yours?

 

The post Remkus’ Roundup: Twenty Nineteen, GlotPress & ACF Gutenberg integration appeared first on Yoast.

Yoast SEO Premium 9.0 fulfills a long lasting wish of many bloggers and content writers, including me. The Yoast SEO premium analysis is able to do something it has never done before: take word forms into account (amongst other things). As one of Yoast’s linguists pointed out: “Google knows word forms, so should we.”

Testing the new analysis for you!

For the people who follow Yoast, I might not be a stranger. But if you somehow stumbled upon this post by accident, or by sheer curiosity, I’ll start by introducing myself. I’m Caroline, I’ve been with Yoast for 4 years now and I’ve seen Yoast SEO and its premium version evolve into a better and friendlier product with every release.

Am I the best person to test this analysis for you? You might think not, as I’m a Yoast employee. However, as a blogger for Yoast and for my own Dutch mom blog, I’m one of the people in the company who rants and raves about the plugin out in the open. The developers know what I think of certain aspects of the plugin. Because of my work on GitHub, my blog posts on Yoast.com and my contacts with bloggers worldwide, I know exactly what the cons of the plugin are. So yes, I am the best person to test our new version!

Keyphrase recognition no matter what the order of words is

Our linguistic team worked for months on this release. They got me excited the moment they explained they were overhauling the entire way we were doing keyword recognition. If you’re unsure what this means: until now, we could only match the exact keyphrase in the SEO analysis. This means that if your keyphrase is ‘yellow chair’, we couldn’t match for [yellow chairs] or [chairs that are yellow]. Google knows that [yellow chairs] and [chairs that are yellow], is the same as [a yellow chair], but Yoast SEO did not.

Create better content more freely

In Yoast SEO the word order doesn’t matter anymore. And, in Yoast SEO Premium recognizes plurals and other word forms (for now just in English) like Google does. This means we can provide you with feedback that’s more true to how Google views your content. Not having to worry about exact matches anymore, enables you to focus on creating awesome content.

These new functionalities make sure that your old posts that were, according to us, not particularly optimized for SEO, suddenly are optimized very well. Test it yourself: there’s a huge chance that posts that scored bad or mediocre according to our plugin, now score higher than they did before.

Synonyms

Although the word form recognition only works for English – with more languages to follow soon! – this doesn’t mean the release is useless for non-English users. On the contrary: all our premium users, regardless of language, will benefit so much from this release. In a previous version we’ve introduced synonyms in the plugin. We reevaluated which checks should take synonyms into account. These checks have been completely revised and now rely on both the keyphrase and its synonyms when calculating the SEO score. This means that, despite writing in a non-English language, you can write compelling texts without worrying about the analysis not recognizing synonyms.

What does this mean for my SEO?

Considering the above, we can say for certain that the SEO score will be matching Google’s scoring algorithm more closely. Although no one knows the exact algorithm Google uses, we have come one step closer in providing you the perfect tools to optimize for Google and your visitors.

I can prove this to you by using a post I wrote on Yoast.com this summer. I wrote an article of which the keyphrase is: ‘blogging in summer’. Its score? Orange. Yet, if you Google ‘blogging in summer’, or ‘blogging during summer’ this post scores number one. With the new analysis the SEO score is green, without changing a single line of text. Is this more in line of what we see in Google? Yes, it definitely is. As you can see in the screenshot below, a lot of the checks have gone from red to orange or even green. If I change the keyphrase to ‘blogging during summer’, the analysis stays green, which reflects Google in this as well.

The old Yoast SEO Premium analysis versus the new one

The old Yoast SEO Premium analysis versus the new one

SEO analysis and non-English websites

So far it might seem this release is only interesting for the people who maintain English websites. This is not the case. This release is very interesting for non-English users as well. How so? The function words are filtered out for eight additional languages. For these languages the synonyms are taken into account as well. This results in posts receiving a higher SEO score as well, as seen in below’s print screen of one of my blog posts in Dutch:

SEO Analysis Premium 9.0 for foreign languages

SEO Analysis Premium 9.0 for foreign languages – previous release versus 9.0

Filtering out the function words works – in the free version as well – for the languages: German, Dutch, French, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Russian and Polish.

Synonyms work in Yoast SEO premium only, but aren’t language specific, i.e. work in every language.

Conclusion

What I think of this release? I feared, for an instant, that this release was only impacting the English sites, but I found out this works very well for other languages too. The developers definitely thought of non-English users as well. I can’t wait for the full functionality to be rolled out in all other languages!

Test the plugin yourself

If you still have questions regarding my post or still fear I am not the best person to test this plugin, then I ask you to test it yourself. Our premium plugin has a 30 day refund policy, no questions asked.

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