In November 2017, Yoast Academy took a big leap forward. Switching to a different Learning Management system, called LearnDash, was a key factor in this. Leading up to the release of our free SEO for beginners course, Justin from LearnDash and I decided to take twenty minutes to really dive into the Academy and discuss the ins and outs of how we create courses at Yoast! 

Free course! Learn what makes your site rank with our SEO for beginners training »

Free SEO course: SEO for beginners Info

Key topics

In the webinar, we first discuss how Academy started out. Then, we go into our approach to education and learning principles: we want to create courses in which you can practice your skills and which foster long-term retention. We also explore our new free course: SEO for beginners, showing you exactly how our courses are structured. Then, we go into the assignments we check for you in the SEO copywriting course and the Yoast SEO for WordPress personal configuration review. Lastly, we discuss the nifty tool we built for those who want to buy courses for multiple people. This is great if you want to enroll several of your colleagues! You can very easily assign courses to other people in your MyYoast account. Just type in their email and they will be enrolled automatically!

Check out the webinar!

What is LearnDash?

LearnDash is the Learning Management System (LMS) we use to power Yoast Academy. We have some awesome developers at Yoast, but setting up a solid courses platform is quite a challenge. Luckily, the folks at LearnDash have many years of experience doing exactly that. The fact that you can now practice writing code, the challenging sorting questions which help you memorize the steps you have to take, the clearer navigation setup we created, it’s all thanks to the LMS they provided us with. So check out that webinar to see how we can help you become the best SEO you can be. And while you’re at it, don’t forget to sign up for the free SEO for beginners course!

Read more: ‘Keyword research: the ultimate guide’ »

The post Creating SEO courses at Yoast – Interview by LearnDash appeared first on Yoast.

We’ve added a free course to our curriculum of online SEO courses. It is an SEO course for beginners. If you’re an SEO-newbie or your SEO skills have become a bit rusty, then this is the course for you! Our free online SEO course offers lots and lots of training videos, reading material and challenging questions. We’ll really make you sweat for those right answers. That sounds amazing, right? Or is it too good to be true? Why do we offer a free SEO course? Is there a catch?

Free course! Learn what makes your site rank with our SEO for beginners training »

Free SEO course: SEO for beginners Info

There really isn’t any catch. I would even say that this course is the best course we’ve created so far. In this post, I’ll explain all about why we offer that free online SEO courses at Yoast.

SEO for everyone

The main reason why we decided to make a free SEO course is because of our mission. We offer a free plugin because we believe that everyone, even that small weblog with no money at all, should stand a chance in the search engines. Our plugin takes care of a lot of the important SEO stuff. But if you want to do more, if you want to understand more, you needed to read about it, for example on this blog. And our many articles will tell you everything you need to know in order to set up a successful SEO strategy. But the journey through these articles, the search to find the information you need to get started can be quite the hassle. Our SEO for beginners course helps you to make sense of all the information. We’ll talk you through the important aspects of SEO, step by step. After following our course, you know what it takes to set up a successful SEO strategy.

Get to know our courses

Another reason for offering a free online SEO course is because we are really proud of Yoast Academy. We want more people to experience our online courses. In the past year, we hired new people, set up our very own studio and really invested in developing the best learning materials. We now offer a very high-quality online training. We have many -mostly rather short- video’s in which a topic is explained and we offer reading material covering the same topic. But most importantly, we test whether or not you really understand the material. You’ll be challenged by our questions at the end of each lesson. In order to get the certificate, you’ll really need to master all of the topics we discuss.

Our free SEO for beginners course will offer you a real Yoast Academy experience. Of course, we hope people will get hooked and buy one of our other online courses as well. Lifelong learning it is ;-).

More free courses?

The SEO for beginners course is the first free online course Yoast offers. However, we are already thinking about making another one. The second free online course is planned to be released at the end of 2018 and will be a course covering the basics of the workings of the internet. We would like to address the question: how does the internet actually work? This might sound basic, but for an SEO it is really important to have a correct understanding of the workings of the internet.

Read more: ‘What is SEO?’ »

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Would you like to learn more about SEO? Do you want to learn from world-renowned experts? But can’t justify spending a lot of money on a training just yet? At Yoast, we understand that. And we want to help. That’s why today, we are releasing our first free course: SEO for beginners!  

Free course! Learn what makes your site rank with our SEO for beginners training »

Free SEO course: SEO for beginners Info

What will I learn?

In the Yoast SEO for beginners training, we will teach you what SEO is, what Google does, and how to rank in the search results. Do you know, for example, how Google reads your content and ranks it? Well, after this training you will! We’ll also tell you how to write your copy in such a way that Google knows exactly what you’re talking about. Moreover, we’ll tell you how you can make sure that Google can actually put your pages into the search results. And much more!

Could I benefit from this training?

The SEO for beginners course is valuable for everyone who is not already an SEO expert. Whether you are looking to start a career in SEO or are a small business owner with a website. Maybe you just want to join the discussion with your colleagues. It doesn’t matter. SEO is all about gaining an edge over your competition. You can now take the first step for free!

Do I have to use WordPress or the Yoast SEO plugin?

No, you don’t. The training is valuable for anyone, regardless of whether you use WordPress or the Yoast SEO plugin. Some lessons discuss how the plugin can help you with your SEO. Still, the majority of the information applies to anyone and any situation.

Why is the training free?

We want SEO to be for everyone. That is our company mission. Sure, we need to make some money and we have a collection of great products which helps us do that. But not everyone is able to afford them or justify the investment. We want to be there for you as well. There are more reasons, which Marieke has written an entire article about!

How can I get this course?

Getting a Yoast training has never been easier. If you already have a MyYoast account, the course is already available to you here. If you don’t have a MyYoast account yet, you can just create one here. You will receive an email with a link to the course. Enjoy!

 

Read on: ‘Yoast’s mission: SEO for everyone!’ »

The post Free SEO for beginners course now available! appeared first on Yoast.

Want to know what makes your site rank higher in Google? Understand how Google works? This is your chance to learn it… for free! For the first time ever, we’re launching a completely free course: the SEO for beginners training. In this course, you’ll take your first steps in the world of Search Engine Optimization, also known as SEO. The course will be launched on May 7 and is easy, fun and free! So what’s stopping you?

Learn what to do to make your web traffic grow. Create a My Yoast user account now and we’ll give you access to the course on May 7!

Why take this course?

You want to rank higher

Whatever your expertise is, whether you’re a hairdresser, a consultant or a plumber, you probably have a website. And you want it to rank on top in Google. But what if the competition is outranking you? You can beat them through search engine optimization or SEO. SEO is the art of creating a website that search engines and users like. This can give you a head start on the competition that’s still in the dark about SEO. In the SEO for beginners training, you’ll learn why Google likes certain websites more than others. So you’ll know what to improve on your own website.

It’s easy

As this course is for beginners, it doesn’t matter if you know nothing about SEO or not so much about websites yet! We won’t use too many technical terms. We want everyone with a website to be able to understand what makes one website better than the other.

It’s fun and for free!

And on top of that, it’s free and much fun to do! You’ll get access to over two hours of instructional videos, lots of reading material, and challenging quizzes to train what you’ve learned. 

What will you learn?

In this training, you’ll learn which factors make a website rank high in Google’s search results. It will give you a fundamental understanding of how search engines work. You’ll learn about keywords, why they are important and how to choose them well. Also, you’ll get insight in writing SEO-friendly posts and how structuring your site well can improve your rankings.

Why is this course free?

At Yoast we believe in fair changes in the search results for everyone. We think SEO isn’t something only the big companies should be able to do. Small businesses or non-profit organizations, or great ideas in general should get a platform and should be easy to find on the internet as well. That’s why our Yoast SEO plugin is for free, you get a free eBook when you sign up for our newsletter and next week we’ll even add a free course to the list!

How do you get access?

As of May 7 you’ll be able to enroll in this course. It’s completely free. If you don’t want to miss it you can already create a My Yoast account. The course will be automatically added to your account on May 7. We’ll send you an email when it’s available!

The post Get ready for our FREE training: SEO for beginners appeared first on Yoast.

Today is King’s Day! At least, it’s King’s Day in the Netherlands. April 27 marks the 51st birthday of our King Willem Alexander and is a national holiday for all Dutch people. This year, we wanted to share our celebrations with all of you by giving you 20% off on our SEO copywriting course! Although Willem Alexander is king of the Netherlands, content remains king of SEO. In this post, I’ll explain why content is so very important for SEO, I’ll share the three most important aspects of content SEO and how you can benefit from that 20% discount.

Learn how to write awesome and SEO friendly articles in our SEO Copywriting training »

SEO copywriting training Info

Start ruling your rankings and grab this 20% discount now:

Get The Yoast SEO Copywriting Training Now$199 $159.20 (ex VAT) Only today - April 27!

Why is content king?

Content SEO is crucial because search engines read your website. The words you use on your site determine whether or not your site will rank on their results pages. Google’s algorithm decides the ranking of your site largely based on the content you publish. Of course, your website should also be well-designed, have a great user interface, and all the technical stuff should be covered. But without high-quality content, your site does not stand a chance in the search engines. Google just wants to give the audience a result that fits the search query. This means you need to be writing awesome and engaging content that answer the needs of your audience.

So how do you write awesome content?

Content SEO includes everything related to writing and structuring content on your website. There are three major elements you need to consider to produce content that will make your website rank well: keyword strategy, site structure and copywriting.

Keyword research

Proper keyword research will make clear which search terms your audience uses. This is crucial. Optimizing content for words that people do not use doesn’t make any sense. Doing proper keyword research makes sure that you use the same words as your target audience.

Site structure

The way your site is structured gives Google important clues about where to find the most important content. Your site’s structure determines whether a search engine can understand what your site is about and which pages it will rank highest.

Copywriting

Finally, you just need to write compelling copy. Texts that are original and readable. Stuff people like to read. And you should optimize those texts for SEO.

20% discount on the online SEO copywriting training

The very best way to get started with content SEO is by doing our SEO copywriting training. Our online courses consist of lots of videos and reading material. And, we have lots of challenging questions to test whether you understood the material. This course also has 2 assignments which will be corrected by an SEO professional at Yoast. You’ll be asked to do your own keyword research and to write a blog post. You’ll receive feedback on both of your assignments. Our SEO copywriting course will help you become King (or Queen) of SEO! Good Luck!

Get The Yoast SEO Copywriting Training Now$199 $159.20 (ex VAT) Only today - April 27!

The post Content is king – 20% off our SEO copywriting training appeared first on Yoast.

Today we’re launching the Personal configuration review: an extra personal assignment you can add to the Yoast SEO for WordPress plugin training. You can now test if you’ve understood the subject matter of our training well and do an extra assignment – on your own site! When you’ve configured Yoast SEO on your site, we’ll check it for you and give you personal feedback. This assignment is only available in combination with our plugin training. Buy them together now for only $99!

Get The Yoast SEO Training + Configuration Review Now$99 (ex VAT) for training and assignment

What is it?

The Personal configuration review is an extension of the existing Yoast SEO for WordPress plugin training. In this new assignment we’ll take you by the hand and guide you through the settings of Yoast SEO, like the Search appearance section, the integration with Google Search Console and the Social tab. For instance, we’ll help you decide which content you should have indexed and which not. Get ready to apply the skills you’ve learned in the training!

You can only do this assignment when you buy the Yoast SEO for WordPress training. We recommend doing that because it will give you the opportunity to test your comprehension of the Yoast SEO plugin. And even better, you’ll know directly if Yoast SEO is configured optimally for your type of website.

How does it work?

Adding this extra assignment to your course is easy! Just follow these steps:

  1. Buy the course and the assignment together (the assignment is only available as an extension of the training).
  2. After you’ve finished the course you’ll get access to the Personal configuration review assignment.
  3. Get started and configure Yoast SEO on your own website with help of the assignment.
  4. Once you’re done inform us that you’ve finished it and grant us access to the backend of your WordPress Install via a guest account.
  5. We’ll check your configuration and we’ll provide personal feedback by email.
  6. If you’ve set it up well, you’ll get an additional certificate and badge.

Why this assignment?

At Yoast we want to deliver the best online SEO courses. We believe good training requires some personal attention. That’s why we’ll top up more courses with assignments that will be checked by members of our team in the future. Because nothing is more valuable than true customized feedback by SEO professionals!

Get The Yoast SEO Training + Configuration Review Now$99 (ex VAT) for training and assignment

The post Personal configuration review: Train your skills and get our feedback appeared first on Yoast.

On March 6, we released a major update of our Yoast SEO plugin. This update was aimed at making SEO easier and more understandable for our users. We removed quite a few settings and options. In other cases, we changed the names of settings making them easier to understand for non-technical users. All in all, the reactions on this update were rather positive. We received some questions as well, mostly about why we removed certain settings and options. In this post, I’ll explain why we chose to remove those settings. 

Get the most out of Yoast SEO, learn every feature and best practice in our Yoast SEO for WordPress training! »

Yoast SEO for WordPress training Info

If there’s a button, people want to click it

The main reason why we deleted settings is because in 99% of the cases it should not be altered. But if you give people a toggle or a button, generally they’ll think they have to do something with that toggle or button. Totally understandable. If I have a new watch and it has many fancy buttons, I’d also want to know what they’ll do. By offering all those settings, we gave the impression that our users needed to do something with these settings.

The things we removed were the things people should not worry about: the things that didn’t make much of a difference in their chance of ranking in the search engines. These buttons and toggles were rather useless anyway.

More agreement on proper SEO settings

Working on our new online Yoast SEO plugin training helped us to make the plugin more understandable for a large audience. We had to really make an effort when explaining the settings in videos and text. And we noticed we had a hard time explaining some of the things. It made us question and reassess our decisions. That process lead to a lot of the changes made in the plugin release of March 6.

On top of that, there was another reason why we decided to remove quite a few settings from our plugin. For a long time, the SEO community had strong and opposing opinions about the need of, for example, XML sitemaps. Because of these different opinions, we always offered different options, allowing people to make their own SEO choices. As the profession of SEO matured, SEOs reached more consensus on what things were important to rank high in the search engines. As those influences are rather clear nowadays, we were able to make those changes in the plugin. Important changes, because now, the ease of use of our plugin is improved.

SEO for everyone

The mission of Yoast is SEO for everyone. We believe the web will benefit from all people having an equal chance in the search results. Not only those big international companies with large marketing budgets, but also that small online shop with handmade toys. We believe every idea should get a fair chance in the search results.

When developing our plugin, we always keep our mission in mind. And that’s the reason why we recently decided to make some big changes in our plugin. We really hope that more people will be able to benefit from our plugin. If you really want to know all the ins and outs of Yoast SEO, I would strongly advice you to buy and follow our online plugin course. It will help you to get the most out of our plugin. Because, although we deleted quite a few settings, we still have a lot of toggles, settings and choices left :-) Good luck!

Get the Yoast SEO training Now$39 for course, certificate and badge

The post Why we changed so many things in the 7.0 update appeared first on Yoast.

Today we released our new Yoast SEO for WordPress training. This online course will help you use Yoast SEO to its fullest potential. In this course we’ll train you on how to use all of the functionalities of our plugin best. And the most exciting news is, we decided to reduce the price of this online course! The old version was $99 a year and this new course will only be $39. Here I’ll explain why we decided to reduce it so drastically.

Get the Yoast SEO training Now$39 for course, certificate and badge

Get the most out of Yoast SEO, learn every feature and best practice in our Yoast SEO for WordPress training! »

Yoast SEO for WordPress training Info

SEO for everyone

The mission of Yoast is SEO for everyone. We believe the web will benefit from all people having an equal chance in the search results. Great ideas don’t always come from large companies but are created everywhere around the world. That’s why we believe that every idea should have a fair chance in the search results.

When developing our products, we always keep our mission in mind. That’s why we recently decided to make some big changes in our plugin. We noticed that some settings in Yoast SEO were hard to explain to a non-tech audience. In the 7.0 update of Yoast SEO we tried to make the plugin more user-friendly for everyone.

Creating high quality SEO courses

The Yoast SEO plugin covers most of the technical SEO challenges of a website. But to seriously compete with the large players, every website owner still faces numerous challenges. Our online courses are designed to help people conquer those problems. They’ll teach you everything there is to know about SEO and provide practice to improve your skills.

We are currently updating and improving all of our online courses. We’ve hired an amazing team that’s working full time on creating videos, texts and assignments that’ll help you understand SEO. The new course is suitable for everyone. We’ll start out with the very basics of the plugin and gradually explain everything you need to know.

Reduced prices

Using the Yoast SEO plugin to its full potential will allow everyone to have a fair chance in the search results. That’s what ‘SEO for everyone’ is all about. But not everyone will have enough money to buy an expensive plugin training. That’s the reason why we reduced the price of this one. We hope more people will be able to buy it and profit from it. We would love to give it away for free, but the salaries of our Academy team just need to be paid as well. The training will get regular updates. As the interface of the plugin changes, we’ll record new videos. (We’re already dreading the Gutenberg update, as that’ll really have some impact on the number of videos we’ll need to record).

Get the Yoast SEO training Now$39 for course, certificate and badge

Conclusion

We reduced the price of our plugin training because it will allow more people to use Yoast SEO to its full extent. For the exact same reason, we improved the course, making it suitable for everyone to understand the ins and outs of our plugin.

And we’ve got some more news for you. We’re currently working on a new FREE online course. It will be an introductory course to SEO and we’re planning to release it somewhere in May of this year.

Don’t want to miss it? Subscribe to our newsletter now!

The post Why we reduced the price of our Yoast SEO for WordPress training appeared first on Yoast.

If you want to use the Yoast SEO for WordPress plugin to its full potential, you obviously need to know exactly what it can and can’t do. The release of Yoast SEO 7.0 at the beginning of March introduced many changes to the Yoast SEO plugin. Because of all these changes, we’ve decided to completely rebuild our Yoast SEO for WordPress training from scratch. Check out what’s new and make sure you’re up to speed with the latest developments in our plugin. And, perhaps the best news, we’ve lowered the price. So get it now for only $39!

Get the Yoast SEO training Now$39 for course, certificate and badge

Get the most out of Yoast SEO, learn every feature and best practice in our Yoast SEO for WordPress training! »

Yoast SEO for WordPress training Info

What will you learn?

The new Yoast SEO for WordPress training contains ten modules which follow the same approach we took when improving the plugin itself. We think SEO should be actionable and understandable for everyone. That’s why we start this course with three modules in which we go into SEO and the practical use of our plugin.

We kick off with a thorough discussion of what Google does, and what SEO means to us. Then, we discuss what the plugin can and can’t do. After that, we start exploring the plugin from the perspective of the daily user. Where can you find Yoast SEO in your WordPress backend? What options does the Yoast SEO meta box offer? What nifty and simple tools can you use to make quick progress towards ranking number one?

Only after you have gotten to known the plugin itself will we explore the settings that are the linchpin of our plugin. In modules four to ten, you’ll learn how to make sure what parts of your site are shown in the search results. You’ll learn how make sure you get those nice big Twitter images which catch your audience’s eyes. You’ll learn how to check whether Google has found any errors on your site, and how to fix them! In other words, you’ll learn everything you need to be able to maximize your chances of ranking with the Yoast SEO plugin.

Get the Yoast SEO training Now$39 for course, certificate and badge

New course

We want to make this quite clear: the new Yoast SEO for WordPress course is a completely new course. We’ve recorded sixteen videos which show you exactly how to use the plugin. Moreover, we’ve recorded new screencasts for every single tab of the settings. The videos are also accompanied by brand new reading materials, so you can always go back to quickly check the specifics. What’s more, our recent switch to Learndash has allowed us to devise meaningful questions in which you can actually practice the tips you’ve just received!

Lowered price

Is that all? No, the best is yet to come. Because we want everyone to be able to become a Yoast SEO plugin expert, we’ve made the new and improved Yoast SEO for WordPress plugin training much more affordable to boot! The new course will be available for only $39, or $29 when you bundle it with our Premium plugin.

Get Yoast SEO Premium and our training Now$128 $118 for our Premium plugin and training

Learn why we decided to reduce the price for our course or learn more about this course here.

The post Yoast SEO for WordPress plugin training: Better than ever & reduced in price! appeared first on Yoast.

Yoast Academy is our online SEO courses platform. We’ve been working on our online SEO courses for almost two and a half years now. In 2017, we’ve added some new courses to the curriculum and updated some of the older content. More importantly, we’ve made big plans for new courses and formats for the new year! In this post, I want to look back at Yoast Academy in 2017. But most of all: I want to look forward to what’s just around the corner!

Want rich snippets for your site? Try our Structured data training »

Structured data training Info

To celebrate, we’re having an end of the year sale. Get all our products at 10% off!

New courses this year

We’ve created some great new courses last year. We’ve released two technical SEO courses. Our Technical SEO course teaches you all the basic technical stuff one needs to know in order to do SEO. And, our structured data course helps you get those rich snippets in order so you stand out from the other search results. The heartwarming response we get from people taking our courses inspires us, even more, to invest in Yoast Academy. So in 2017, a fresh start has been made by changing to a different learning management system.

New platform

The learning environment we use for Yoast Academy has gone through the most significant change this year. Course structures were simplified so that lessons are easier to find and distractions are kept to a minimum. We also introduced a brand new customer portal this year, called MyYoast. Courses can now be accessed with a MyYoast account, which means no separate login is needed anymore. MyYoast also makes it a lot easier to manage different courses you have purchased, for example when appointing courses to specific employees.

Another change we’re pretty fond of is the greater range of question types now available for the end-of-course quizzes. This makes for a more meaningful learning experience, as you’re not just asked to repeat information. Some of the new question types require you to show you actually understand what you’ve learned. All in all, we’re off to a great start in making Yoast Academy even more awesome!

What to expect in 2018

This January might already mark the most significant change of the year when the Academy team doubles in size! Jesse and Martijn have been in charge of improving and creating SEO courses up till now and will be joined by two new members of Team Yoast: Maartje and Fleur. There is no shortage of ambition and inspiration for Yoast Academy in 2018! The changes made in 2017 enable us to achieve so much more in the future.

Our ambition is for Yoast Academy to be the go-to place for learning about SEO. Obviously, there’s a great deal you can learn from reading blog posts on SEO topics. We should know as we publish quite a lot of those! The online courses in Yoast Academy make you zoom in and focus on all aspects of a subject and help you understand them in a logical order. So, if you’re looking to learn the ins and outs of a specific SEO subject, Yoast Academy is your place to be.

With our team doubling in capacity and the preparations made in 2017, we’re ready to make some great changes to the Academy. We’re renewing parts of courses, adding new questions and of course: developing brand new courses. We can’t wait to show you and promise we’ve got news soon. See you in 2018!

Read more: ‘Our most read posts of 2017’ »

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