Have you ever done a fresh Yoast SEO for WordPress install on your WordPress website? Have you ever found yourself wondering what’s hidden in the general SEO section of Yoast SEO? In the SEO section, in the bottom half of the WordPress menu on the left of the page? Perhaps the better question would be: have you ever tried our Yoast SEO configuration wizard? Our wizard takes care of all the little things that you should configure. Things that you might forget in your eagerness to get started with your newly set up website.

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Yoast SEO: the #1 WordPress SEO plugin Info

Where can I find the Yoast SEO configuration wizard?

Of course, you want to jump right in and configure our plugin, using that Yoast SEO configuration wizard. Once you have installed our plugin, you’ll see a notification on your Yoast SEO dashboard:

The configuration wizard helps you to easily configure your site to have the optimal SEO settings.
We have detected that you have not finished this wizard yet, so we recommend you to start the configuration wizard to configure Yoast SEO.

There is a link in this message, leading you to a tab that’s located next to your SEO dashboard: “General”. You can set a number of things here, but you’ll also find a button that takes you to the Yoast SEO configuration wizard:

Where to find the Yoast SEO configuration wizard

The wizard

Once you’ve opened the wizard, we’ll guide you through the steps via a few questions. If you answer these, we’ll implement the right settings for your website, based specifically on your answers.

Step 1: Welcome to the Yoast SEO configuration Wizard

Let’s look at the first screen of the configuration wizard:
Yoast SEO configuration wizard: Welcome

You have two options here. You can start the wizard by clicking the purple button in the left box. This will continue the process as described below in this article.

The other option, on the right, will take you to our shop. Because we can do the configuration process for you, if you feel that there’s more to configure, and want to be sure it is done right for your particular site. We’ll check all the things in the wizard, but first, we will have a quick look at your website to see how you implemented things. And how we can optimize these settings for your specific business. Especially the technical side of things may feel challenging for the average site owner. This is where the configuration service is of great help. For the best result, you can also purchase our configuration package, which also includes our Yoast SEO Premium plugin, and the installation of that plugin.

For this post, let’s assume you want to use the Yoast SEO configuration wizard first.

Step 2: Is your site ready to be indexed?

The first question determines whether you want your site to be indexed or not. Perhaps you are working on a development site, on a staging server or just don’t want the public to see your site yet:
Yoast SEO configuration wizard

The reason we ask, is that one of the most important checks in our plugin determines whether Google can index your site or not. Google needs to be able to reach your website and index it unless you don’t want that. If you don’t want that, we merely need to know. You can set your preference for this in the second step of our wizard.

Step 3: What kind of site do you have?

In the next step, we will ask you about the type of site you have. It could be a blog or an online shop, but might as well be a news site or a portfolio.
Yoast SEO configuration wizard

One of the reasons we ask this question is because it’s essential you take a moment and think about this. What is your site about? Let’s take yoast.com, for example. We have two different sections on our website yoast.com:

  • Our blogs: an SEO blog and a dev blog. In these blogs, we share knowledge about both SEO and software development in all its facets.
  • Our online shop. We run an online shop and you’ll find our premium plugins and online courses in there.

What makes this question hard for ourselves, is the fact that following our mission “SEO for everyone”, both are equally important. Sharing knowledge is our main goal. Making sure all companies large and small and all individuals rich and poor, wherever on this planet, can optimize their websites and have an equal chance to rank in the search result pages. We use our products to provide even more insights or to deliver our knowledge to you in a structured package. That is also the reason we charge prices for our software that fit well into the offers of most online agencies. Charging $5,000 for a website, and including a mere $89 for our Yoast SEO Premium plugin seems like a no-brainer. Especially since it just makes your work / the work of your client so much easier. But enough with the promotional talk.

Think for yourself what your answer to this question should be. That’ll make it easier to configure several features of our plugin and, in fact, of your website later on.

For us, as plugin developers, the information we get from this question is also useful for future improvements. For instance, it can help us to prioritize future additions to our plugin for specific types of sites.

Step 4: Is it you or your company?

For the right metadata, we ask you to choose between company and person here. Is your website about you, or the company you represent? If you are a person, we would like to include your name. If you are a company, please add the name and logo.
Yoast SEO configuration wizard

This information will be included in the metadata of your website, with the goal to provide Google with the right information for their Knowledge Graph. The Knowledge Graph is the block of information you see on the right-hand side of the search results, for instance when you do a company search for Sony or Apple. My search for “Apple” actually returned details for our local Apple premium reseller, with a sort of ‘footer’ about the global Apple company details.

To make sure you give Google proper suggestions for that Knowledge Graph, we have added this question.

Step 5: Tell us your social profiles

In addition to your name or company name, we also ask you to let us know which social profiles you have. Again, so we can provide Google with the right information for their Knowledge Graph. Google seems keen on delivering answers to their visitors right away, so you’d better make sure your information is on Google.
Yoast SEO configuration wizard

With social being a part of the Knowledge Graph, and your website being linked on all your social profile pages, be sure to fill this out as completely as possible.

Step 6: To show or not show certain post types

The description in the image below is pretty clear: this is where you can set posts and pages to hidden or visible. Besides that, you can also choose to hide the Media post type.
Yoast SEO configuration wizard

If you set your Media post type to ‘visible’, WordPress will generate separate pages for your images, and we will generate an XML sitemap for your images as well. Now, unless you have a very specific reason to generate these pages, we recommend setting this to ‘hidden’ instead. That way, most websites prevent the generation of a ton of pages that just contain an image and no further content. Google will spend time indexing all these pages, but they add little value to your content. Keep in mind that when an image is on your page, post, or a specific gallery, Google will find it anyway.

Step 7: How many people are publishing content on your site?

We absolutely want to know if your website has multiple authors. There’s a reason for that: when your site only has one author, WordPress will still generate author pages. But if you write all the content on your blog yourself, your blog page will show the exact same collection of posts as your author page. And that, indeed, is duplicate content.
Yoast SEO configuration wizard

We call something duplicate content when the majority of a page is the same as the content on another page. Google will notice this, get confused, won’t know what page to rank first, and might decide to rank both a bit less. You obviously want to prevent that from happening. As we can guide you in this case, we added this check to our Yoast SEO configuration wizard.

Step 8: Google Search Console integration

There is a ton of information about your website in Google Search Console. We have written many posts about webmaster tools like Google Search Console, but did you know we also have an integration for it in our plugin? It connects your website to Google Search Console and allows you to keep a keen eye on your 404 Not Found errors. In our Yoast SEO Premium plugin, we’ll even guide you in preventing these 404 errors by helping you change them to for instance a 301 (so redirect the page to another page), or a 410 status code (which tells Google the page is gone forever).
Yoast SEO configuration wizard

In this step of the Yoast SEO configuration wizard, we guide you in connecting Google Search Console to our plugin. After that, we’ll start showing you your 404s so you can monitor and fix them!

Step 9: Optimizing your page title

At the title settings step in the wizard, we ask you to think about your branding. The website name you enter here is the name that our default page title template will use to put at the end of each page title. The default page title template looks like this:
%%title%% %%page%% %%sep%% %%sitename%%

The last part of that template is %%sitename%% and that’s what you fill out here. Be sure to add it, but keep it short, so the focus will be on the page or post title. It’s nice to have some of your branding in here so people will recognize your pages in the search result pages. If they already know you and your site, they’re more likely to click on one of your links.
Yoast SEO configuration wizard

The third part of the page template is %%sep%%, which stands for separator. A page title that follows our template can be “Some title of a post – Yoast”. The hyphen in there is the separator you can set at this step in the Yoast SEO configuration wizard. Using another separator than the average person might make you stand out from your competitors in the search result pages. But beside that, you can also pick the smallest separator, which could mean you can squeeze in another character or two.

Read more: ‘Titles and meta variables in Yoast SEO’ »

Step 10: Awesome tips and new products in your inbox

As SEO is an ongoing process, our goal is to keep you up-to-date on any changes in Google’s search result pages or Google’s algorithm. We do that by posting on our SEO blog, but also with our newsletter. In the newsletter, we highlight new developments in search, in WordPress and in our company – if relevant.
Yoast SEO configuration wizard

Simply insert your email address, and we’ll keep you in the loop on all things SEO!

Step 11: Upsell: buy our Premium plugin

Call it whatever you want (upsell, spam, useful information), but we have to tell you about our premium plugin in our configuration. Because we deliver incredibly useful SEO extras with that premium plugin, for a reasonable price. To name but a few:

  • What about a redirect manager? We’ll not only show you your 404s, but will also make it very easy to redirect, and thereby fix ’em.
  • An internal linking tool that will help you optimize your site structure to the max. Link suggestions and an easy way to copy these into your text. Optimize your cornerstone content even further.
  • Social previews, so you’ll know exactly what your website will show on Facebook and Twitter, and the option to tweak that.
  • A year of updates for all premium features, so your entire plugin will always be 100% up-to-date.
  • Email support for as long as you have Premium. This means you can email our 24/7 support team with any questions you have about the plugin.

Yoast SEO configuration wizard

Next to that, we offer some hands-on online courses to improve your SEO game even more. Be sure to check them out; you can always decide later if they add value for you, right? We think they do :)

Step 12: Even more free information about the plugin: then you’re ready to get started!

All the steps above have one goal: prepare you and your website for SEO. These steps are focused on the general settings of our plugin.

If you have used our plugin before, you’ll know it also provides a thorough SEO analysis in real time, while you write your posts or pages. On the page/post edit screen, where you write your content, you’ll find a so-called meta box with our SEO and readability analysis. For more insights on both, we finish our Yoast SEO configuration wizard with a helpful video, which tells you more about that specific part of the plugin. Be sure to watch that video!
Yoast SEO configuration wizard: finished

The configuration wizard makes things easier for all of us

All in all, I trust this article gives you a pretty good insight in why you should give our Yoast SEO configuration wizard a spin. And why we ask what we ask in there!

And again, if you want us to configure the plugin for you, feel free to use our Yoast SEO configuration service instead.

Keep reading: ‘Why every website needs Yoast SEO’ »

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If you want content to rank in Google, Google needs to know about the existence of that content. That means that you (or another site) should link to this content. Google will follow links and saves every post or page it finds through these links to in the index. So you’ll understand that it’s important you make sure you link to all of your content. That sounds ridiculously simple, but if you’re creating and publishing a lot of content, your linking structure might not be a top priority. That’s why we’ve added a new functionality to Yoast SEO premium, which will warn you about posts that aren’t linked to at all: the orphaned content feature.

Learn how to structure your site well with our Site structure training! »

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What is orphaned content?

The term ‘orphaned content’ refers to articles that don’t get any links from other articles or posts. As a result of that, these articles are hard to find, both by Google and by users of your site.

If you create a new post, it’ll appear on your homepage. That does create a link, of course. If you add categories or tags to your post, it’ll have a few more links. Orphaned content can have these kinds of links, but lacks text links.

Why is orphaned content important for SEO?

To rank with content in Google, Google obviously needs to know about it. Google and other search engines follow links and save all the content of pages in their index. Orphaned content has few internal links from other pages or posts linking to it. Google will consider this type of content less important. So, if an article is important to you, you should make that clear to Google (and your visitors). Link to that specific article from other (similar) content.

How is orphaned content created?

If you write a new blog post, publish it and then forget about it, you probably won’t link to it anymore in your new posts and pages. Is this a bad thing? Well, that depends on the quality of the blog post. It is definitely a bad thing if you want people and Google to find your post because it’s important. In that case: make sure Google and your audience can find that orphaned blog post. Linking to it from articles that generate a lot of traffic in the search engines will help Google and your audience get to your blog post.

How do I use the orphaned content check?

You can find the orphaned content filter in your post overview. If you’ve installed Yoast SEO premium, your post overview will look like this:

orphaned posts Yoast SEO 5.6

Clicking on the orphaned content filter will give an overview of all the posts without text links linking to them. At Yoast, we have quite a few orphaned articles as well (content-team are you reading this? We have some work to do here ;-)).

Scrolling through our own orphaned articles, made me very aware of the fact that recent articles are often orphaned. We just don’t get around to adding links to these articles in our existing blog posts. Still, for articles that are important to our SEO strategy or to our brand, we should make sure to add links in posts that generate a lot of traffic. That’ll help Google and our audience to find those important posts.

You’ll receive a notification in your SEO dashboard if your site has orphaned content.

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Should you always ‘solve’ orphaned content?

For some articles, it isn’t that important to solve an orphaned content status. Some blog posts are only important for a short period of time. At Yoast, we’re writing a lot about YoastCon at the moment, because that’s a big event coming up. Announcing such an event makes for a great blog post, but such a blog post probably has less value next year. It’s no problem for such a post to remain orphaned. In fact, perhaps you should consider deleting these pages (properly of course!) altogether. That’ll clean up your site a bit.

Conclusion: keep an eye on that orphaned content!

As I have shown, it’s easy to unwittingly create orphaned content, if you’re writing a lot of posts. From now on, you can use the orphaned content feature of Yoast SEO premium to stay on top of things. You can easily check which posts and pages are orphaned, and add links to important content, so both Google and your users can find it!

Read more: ‘Site structure: the ultimate guide’ »

 

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In these last few releases of Yoast SEO, we’ve been focusing heavily on internal linking. Linking your posts in a sensible manner helps build a solid site structure, which, in turn, makes your site easier to understand for both humans and machines. Yoast SEO 5.6 brings another new tool to help you find content to link to: the orphaned content filter. Orphaned content is content that doesn’t have any links pointing to it. Here, I’ll explain why we added it to Yoast SEO 5.6 and how you can use it to improve your SEO.

Optimize your site for search & social media and keep it optimized with Yoast SEO Premium »

Yoast SEO: the #1 WordPress SEO plugin Info

Yoast SEO Premium: Fix orphaned content

Orphaned content, you say? Yes, orphaned content is content on your site that doesn’t get any links from other parts of your site. Content that doesn’t get links, will stay undiscovered by visitors and search engines. This happens a lot, even on Yoast.com. It’s easy to forget all those articles you wrote. But if a certain article is important to you and you want it to rank for a specific keyword, you need to link it in your site structure. No links? No rankings.

But finding those orphaned articles is not easy. No one knows every link in every article. That’s why we’ve built a new tool for Yoast SEO Premium users that lets you find these posts with the touch of a button. Just go to your posts overview in the backend of WordPress and click ‘Orphaned content’ in the top bar. Now, every article that hasn’t been linked to will appear in the list. You will even receive a notification when Yoast SEO discovers new orphaned content. Go through the list and fix those links!

The orphaned content filter is a new feature in a line of tools that help you to build a great site structure. We all know it is imperative to have a well-thought-out structure to your site so users and search engines can understand it quickly. Improving the way you link your posts and pages together, helps improve your rankings. Use the Yoast SEO text link counter, internal linking suggestions, and cornerstone content features to find relevant posts to link to and to add focus to your internal linking strategy. Want to use all these extremely helpful tools? Buy Yoast SEO Premium now and you’ll get access to all of them and much more, like 24/7 support.

To further explain the concept of orphaned content and how to fix this with the help of Yoast SEO, Marieke wrote a post that tells you all about this new feature.

orphaned posts Yoast SEO 5.6

Redesigned Yoast SEO help center

We like to help you do your job and we’re always improving how we do that. Today, we’d like to introduce our new and improved help center in Yoast SEO. The help center is available in every page of Yoast SEO. The little ‘Need help?’ button is easy to find. Click on it to open the revamped help center to find a drop-down screen with three tabs. Sometimes it has extra tabs, like on the Titles and Metas settings page.

The help center always shows a tutorial video relevant for the page. In addition, there’s a search bar for our knowledge base and a link to a form to request help. Searching our knowledge base surfaces an incredible amount of answers to many problems people often run into. This new help center makes it easy to find the kind of answer you need. And don’t forget, if you have a Yoast SEO Premium license you can contact our awesome support team anytime you wish!

Yoast SEO new help center

search knowledge base

kb refresh in Yoast SEO

 

Update now

In Yoast SEO 5.6 we’ve introduced a great new feature, the orphaned content filter, and a brand-new help center. In addition to that, we’ve fixed several bugs and improved various parts of the plugin. We hope this version of Yoast SEO will make it even easier to improve your site structure. Now, get to work and start giving those orphaned posts the links they deserve!

Read on: ‘Why every website needs Yoast SEO’ »

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With the release of Yoast SEO 5.5 comes a great new feature: SEO roles. A site admin can now determine in the backend of WordPress who gets access to the various settings and features of Yoast SEO. This makes for a more fluid and flexible access protocol for different kinds of users on a site. It is no longer a one-size-fits-all solution, but a more tailored one. SEO roles make Yoast SEO even more powerful for every type of user. Here, we’ll explain why these roles are so awesome.

Optimize your site for search & social media and keep it optimized with Yoast SEO Premium »

Yoast SEO: the #1 WordPress SEO plugin Info

Managing user roles in Yoast SEO 5.5

It’s always been a challenge to use Yoast SEO in a larger site environment. As an admin, you’d have to choose between offering users full access to the plugin or just access to the SEO post editor part. That means a regular user couldn’t use the redirects manager, for instance, and had to ask an admin for help every time he or she wanted to add, change or delete redirects. We’ve seen it happing here at Yoast as well. Of course, there’s a whole range of possible permissions in between. Yoast SEO now introduces two new roles that make this a lot easier to manage: the SEO manager and SEO editor, in addition to the admin who determines who gets to see what.

Roles and capabilities

Roles in Yoast SEO consist of one or more capabilities, like:

  • managing options (this gives you full access),
  • managing redirects,
  • editing advanced metadata,
  • access to the bulk editor.

The SEO editor, for instance, can now make redirects, but cannot change the settings of the plugin or access the advanced metadata editor of Yoast SEO. This way, the SEO editor has more access than a regular user, but less than the SEO manager who can manage settings as well. If you use a permission or role manager plugin for WordPress like Justin Tadlock’s excellent Members plugin, you get even more fine-grained control over the capabilities within Yoast SEO. This way, you can mix and match capabilities in any form you’d like.

In Yoast SEO Premium, we’ve also added the capability to manage redirects without having to be an administrator. By activating this, users within a specific role get full access to the redirects manager. No longer do site managers have to be swamped with redirects requests by site editors, they can manage those themselves. Personally, I like that a lot. By adding some magic code to the plugin, the redirects manager now shows up in the WordPress sidebar menu, even if your Yoast SEO menu is hidden by default. How cool is that?

yoast seo 5.5 filter

Managing your site has never been easier

The SEO roles in Yoast SEO make it incredibly easy to give more people working on your site access to the features and settings they need, without granting them full access. Does your site editor need to edit advanced metadata? No? Block it in Yoast SEO. Does he or she need to manage redirects and do large-scale SEO optimizations with the bulk editor? Great, grant him or her access to these parts of the plugin. You can do this and more – all from the admin dashboard of Yoast SEO!

Read more: ‘Yoast SEO 5.5: Introducing SEO roles’ »

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We’ve got good news for site managers and site owners: Yoast SEO 5.5 now supports SEO roles. It’s no longer all or nothing for users of Yoast SEO because two new roles with several capabilities let you make more deliberate decisions about who has access to what SEO settings in the backend. By using a WordPress permission plugin, you have even more fine-grained control over roles and capabilities. Let’s dive right in!

Optimize your site for search & social media and keep it optimized with Yoast SEO Premium »

Yoast SEO: the #1 WordPress SEO plugin Info

Managing SEO roles with Yoast SEO 5.5

The most prominent feature of Yoast SEO 5.5 is SEO roles. Let’s say you have editors working on your site and you want them to be able to manage redirects for themselves. Previously, these editors had to ask you as a site administrator to do this for them because they didn’t have access to the redirects manager. Now, you can grant them access to these particular parts of the plugin. Two new roles, the SEO editor and SEO manager, make for a much more flexible solution when working with multiple people on your site. The administrator can determine who gets to see and do what, while the users get the tools they need to do their work.

I’ve written a separate post explaining the SEO roles in Yoast SEO in more detail.

Other new features

SEO roles are just one of the new additions to the plugin. Yoast SEO 5.5 is a massive release, with loads of great stuff. Let’s look at a couple of highlights.

Redesigned dashboard widget

Your WordPress dashboard should give you important information at a glance. Our old dashboard widget was in desperate need of a new coat of paint and an overhaul of its contents. The new widget now shows you how your SEO is doing. You’ll see how many posts have good SEO score and how many are just OK or which ones don’t have a focus keywords attached to it. Keeping up with our SEO articles has become much easier since we’ve added links to the most recent posts on yoast.com.

Redirects manager access, plus redirects filter

The redirects manager in Yoast SEO Premium also has a new role within the plugin. Premium users can now make the redirects manager available to other contributors, without them having to have special access. It’s even available in the menu!

We’ve added something else to it: you can now filter redirect types in the redirects manager. This way, you can quickly find all your 410 Content Deleted redirects, for instance, and manage them in a jiffy. If you’re not using the redirects manager, you’re missing out on a killer tool that’ll save you loads of time and headaches.

yoast seo 5.5 filter

Focus keyword export

Last, but not least in Yoast SEO 5.5 Premium: Focus keyword export! Select the data you need – keywords, URL, readability score and/or title – and you’ll get a file with an excellent overview of how you use focus keywords on your site. You can quickly see which posts or pages need work! And yes, this works for content that has multiple focus keywords as well.

Update now!

Yoast SEO 5.5 is chock full of new features, enhancements, and fixes. This post doesn’t nearly describe all the changes in this release. We’re very proud of the new SEO roles as these will make site managers much more flexible in permitting users to various parts of the plugin. We hope you like this new feature as much as we do. Happy updating!

Keep reading: ‘Why every website needs Yoast SEO’ »

The post Yoast SEO 5.5: Introducing SEO roles appeared first on Yoast.

The developers at Yoast HQ are quite the busy bees. In the past few weeks, we’ve released Yoast SEO 5.3 – with some pretty cool features -, helped build a plugin that provides the ‘glue’ between two of the biggest WordPress plugins out there and launched an innovative new customer portal called My Yoast. After the dust has settled, it’s time to release the next version of our flagship plugin: Yoast SEO 5.4. Find out what’s new and what’s fixed.

Optimize your site for search & social media and keep it optimized with Yoast SEO Premium »

Yoast SEO: the #1 WordPress SEO plugin Info

Redirects in Yoast SEO Premium

The redirects manager in Yoast SEO Premium is pretty awesome, if I may say so. It helps you with everyday redirect tasks, so you don’t have to worry about this. So, whenever you deleted a post or change a URL, the redirects manager will ask you if it should redirect the old content to the new content. This way, visitors will never stumble upon pages that don’t exist anymore, resulting in the dreaded 404 error message.

In Yoast SEO 5.3, we added the possibility to export all your redirects in a CSV file. This file gives you a complete overview of all the redirects on your site. In Yoast SEO 5.4, we’ve made it possible to import a redirects CSV file. Now, you can make (bulk) changes to your redirects within that CSV file and import it again when you’re done. Changes will take place immediately. There are loads of scenarios where this will come in handy, for instance, when you’re rebuilding a site and want to replace the same redirects. You’ll find the import and export features in the Tools section of Yoast SEO.

If you want to learn more about what happens behind the scenes of Yoast SEO, you should join us at YoastCon. YoastCon is a hands-on conference that teaches you the ins-and-outs of SEO. Read more »

Technical improvements

Today’s releases mostly feature improvements that make sure that Yoast SEO runs like a well-oiled machine. To increase the performance of the plugin, we’ve replaced the use of `get_posts` and `get_children` by `WP_Query`. This release’s community input came from Saša Todorović – who has been very active lately – and Pete Nelson. The first proposed a fix to exclude archive pages from the sitemap, based on the noindex setting. The latter suggested a hook to disable the Twitter card.

Happy updating!

The updated Yoast plugins are now available, so go get them! We’re working around the clock to bring you a helpful product that makes SEO easier for everyone. We hope you enjoy working with Yoast SEO and value the improvements the plugin brings. Happy updating!

Read more: ‘Why every website needs Yoast SEO’ »

The post Yoast SEO 5.4 appeared first on Yoast.

At Yoast, we greatly value our brilliant community. Hundreds of people voluntarily help us to improve our products by giving valuable feedback and insights into their usage of Yoast SEO. Contributors fix issues and suggest enhancements to make our work increasingly better. Today, with the release of Yoast SEO 5.3, we add another chapter to our open source driven development.

Optimize your site for search & social media and keep it optimized with Yoast SEO Premium »

Yoast SEO for WordPress pluginBuy now » Info

Getting better, together

Browsing through our GitHub repository is a joy. Many helpful discussions are going on about the different Yoast plugins and Yoast SEO in particular. We greatly appreciate this as it gives us a feel of what you as a user want and what kind of problems you run into. This way, we can make calculated decisions on where the plugin could go next.

In almost every release there is at least one enhancement or fix by one of our esteemed contributors. In Yoast SEO 5.3 it’s Saša Todorović‘s time to shine, one of our most prolific contributors. But there are many, many more and we’d like to thank you all. If you’d like to contribute, please don’t hesitate and visit our repository on github.com/yoast.

Full support for Advanced Custom Fields (ACF)

We’re now announcing a different kind of community open source effort: full support for the very popular Advanced Custom Fields (ACF) WordPress plugin by Elliot Condon. Together with Viktor Fröberg, Marcus Forsberg, Thomas Kräftner and the awesome guys and girls at Angry Creative, we’ve merged two different ACF glue plugins and redeveloped these into one official one: ACF Content Analysis for Yoast SEO. This plugin will be updated on a regular basis and will offer continued support for ACF. From now on, Yoast SEO will be able to check your content in custom fields built by ACF.

If you want to know more about this project and what it all means for Yoast SEO and Advanced Custom Fields users, you can read the blog post about this new release.

Improvements: Schema.org, readability filter, XML image sitemap

Besides fixing support for ACF, our development team made great strides with Yoast SEO 5.3. Thanks to the awesome Saša Todorović, we’ve added an XML schema for image sitemaps so these can be validated in sitemap checks. We’ve also made it possible for custom theme providers to hook after_theme_load so they can provide their own XML sitemaps during setup.

One of the coolest additions in this release is the broader use of Schema.org metadata. Schema.org structured data is getting more important by the day, so you have to work on it. In Yoast SEO 5.3, the plugin not only adds Schema.org meta data about your site, like your name, logo, etc., to your homepage but every page on your site. If you’d like to learn more about structured data, we can recommend our Structured data course.

It’s always been possible to filter your posts by SEO score, so you could easily find these to improve them. Now, you can also filter by readability score. One more way to weed out those low-quality posts!

Yoast SEO Premium: Redirect export to CSV

We’ve added one of the most requested features to Yoast SEO Premium: export your redirects to CSV. You can now get a full overview of the redirects on your site in one handy file. Check the list and use it to make adjustments if needed.

Onwards and upwards

Yoast SEO 5.3 has been a joy to build, thanks to the continued support of our lovely community. Thanks for contributing. If you’d like to contribute as well, you know where to find us. Have fun updating!

Read on: ‘Why every website needs Yoast SEO’ »

Today we’re releasing Yoast SEO 5.2. In this brand new version you’ll find some feature enhancements, accessibility improvements and a couple of bug fixes. In addition to that, we’ve laid some groundwork that will help us make Yoast SEO work well with the plugins our users use most. Read about all the improvements here!

Accessibility

Web accessibility is something we always urge website owners to think about and improve. As we can’t let our own products fall behind, we regularly work on the accessibility of the plugins we develop. This time, we scrutinized the accessibility of the onboarding wizard of Yoast SEO and improved it so everyone will be able to use it well. 

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Redirects for private posts

The redirects manager of Yoast SEO Premium is one of the features we’re most proud of. It makes creating redirects – and therefore preventing 404s – so much easier, and helps site owners to be less dependent of developers. As of this release, we’ve added an enhancement to this feature. From now on, if you trash a post that’s set to private, Yoast SEO Premium will also ask if you want to redirect the old url to a new one. 

Compatibility

One thing that keeps challenging plugin developers like us is to make plugins work with all the different plugins that our users use. There are so many plugins out there – not even to mention the various combinations of plugins that exist. To improve the compatibility of our plugins, we’ve added tracking to find out which other plugins our Premium users have installed. This will help us tremendously in making Yoast SEO work flawlessly on more WordPress installs. For the same reason, we’re tracking which PHP version our user’s websites are running on.

Speaking of PHP, if your site is running on PHP version 5.3 or lower, you couldn’t have missed the notice to urge you to move to a newer version since our 4.5 release. Does this WHIP notice keep annoying you? Then we have some good news for you. You can now dismiss the notice. After 4 weeks it will pop up again though, as we still believe upgrading to a newer PHP version is the best way to go.

That’s about it. Go update to 5.2 and enjoy this brand new version of Yoast SEO!

Read more: ‘Why every website needs Yoast SEO’ »

Our development team is steadily chugging along and today provides you with a new and improved edition of Yoast SEO. This release features mainly enhancements and fixes, plus a slew of updates to our language support. Let us walk you through the new version we know as Yoast SEO 5.1, starting with our main focus point in this release: languages.

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Updated language support in Yoast SEO 5.1

We like to know a language inside and out to be able to offer the best possible content and readability analysis. That’s why we’re continually improving the support we provide for languages and add new languages in the process. This release, we’re doing a lot of work on our language support. The highlight? Thanks to Abramo Tesoro, we’re now offering complete Italian Insights and Linking Suggestions in Yoast SEO 5.1 Premium.

Our Italian friends can now write a couple of hundred words to see the related post tool automatically suggest internal links to add to their posts. It’s a helpful tool that helps you build a solid site structure, and we’re happy that our Italian speaking users can use it now. Additionally, we’ve improved the Internal Linking Suggestions and Insights for Spanish, Dutch, French, English, and German.

Even more language news

In this release, we have a lot of new language additions. For instance, we’ve added additional English and French transition words, that last one thanks to Vianney Andre who also helped us with the Yoast SEO 5.0 release.

Yoast SEO can now filter out plural ordinal numbers for Spanish, Italian, and French. That means we can filter out things like octavo, ventunesimo or zéroième, when we encounter them in illogical places. This way, we can build a clean and useful prominent words list. Also, we’ve added filters for time words for English, Dutch, German, French, and Spanish. Words like afternoon, middag, nachmittag, matin or tarde will no longer influence the link suggestions.

Enhancements & fixes

Since releasing Yoast SEO 5.0 a couple of weeks ago, we’ve been hard at work improving that version and getting things ready for future releases. Besides fixing bugs and enhancing the performance of the plugin, we’ve made some changes that will improve the way the plugin works. In addition to that, we’re also fine-tuning some workflows and thanks to a couple of UX changes you’ll have to guess less what some little things mean. Lastly, we’ve added an importer for Jetpack SEO data.

Conclusion

Yoast SEO 5.1 is a significant step forward in the language department. We now support multiple languages: English, Dutch, German, French, Spanish and Italian, and our understanding of these languages is only increasing. With this knowledge, we can provide you with helpful information that not only helps you to write brilliant content but also to build a solid site structure by suggesting internal links based on what you write.

I hear you thinking:

“Maybe my language is next?”

Could be! Let us know in the comments which language we should look into, and we’ll see what we can do.

Read more: ‘Why every website needs Yoast SEO’ »

Our mission statement is SEO for Everyone. On many fronts, we’re making good on that promise. In 2016, Yoast SEO added revolutionary checks to content and readability analysis features. Much of that year was spent improving and enhancing the content part of the plugin. In 2017, we’re fixing the site structure problem, by adding, among other things, an internal linking tool and cornerstone content checks. Now, we’re taking the next step: Yoast SEO 5.0 features a brand new, and awesome, text link counter.

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Improving your structure one link at a time

SEOs can probably build solid site structures in their sleep, but for the rest of us, it’s hard work. We need every kind of help we can get. This process requires a lot of work. That’s why we’re starting to make Yoast SEO a tool that can not just help you with improving your content and different kinds of on-page optimizations but transcend that to a site-wide level.

Yoast SEO 5.0 kicks things off with the introduction of the text link counter. It’s the first tool that looks at your site from a site-wide SEO perspective. We all know how important – internal and external – links are. The web is based on links. We all form connections that lead us from one place to another. Links build a site structure. We, however, often encounter sites that hardly use links to form connections between different parts of the site. Without a well-thought-out linking structure, there will be no site structure. But how do I link correctly? Is there a way to check the links I have on my site and how do I know which articles link back? Well, now there is.

yoast seo 5.0 text link counter

New icons in Yoast SEO 5.0. The arrow pointing out is the number of internal links in an article. The arrow pointing in is the number of internal links to this article. The traffic light is the SEO score, while the feather represents the readability score.

 

text links counter

Hover over the icons to see more information.

Yoast SEO text link counter

The text link counter in Yoast SEO 5.0 analyzes every part of your site and presents all the internal links found on your WordPress site in two new columns. The first one – the icon with an arrow pointing out – shows the number of internal links an article has, while the second column – arrow pointing in – shows the number of internal links pointing to this post. By browsing the overview, you can easily see which posts and pages are linked. You can also discover which posts don’t have enough links or which links could be improved. You might even find pages that have just one or no links at all. This way, you can prioritize the posts and pages you need to fix to build up your site structure. Read Marieke’s post on why you should use the text link counter.

We’re making this tool available to every user of Yoast SEO because we think everyone can use a little help in building a solid site structure. The absence of a strong structure is one of the main reasons many sites fail to live up to expectations. Let us help you fix it. We want to improve your site from a holistic SEO perspective and lower the barriers to do so. Every part of your site has to be perfect to be the best possible result.

To keep track of your linking structure, we have to add a table to your database. If you are running into problems with this, you can get more information in this entry on our Knowledge Base.

Enhancement for Italian and French

New features are cool, but we’re also still focussing on expanding Yoast SEO’s language abilities. In the past releases, Yoast SEO received initial Italian support: transition word and sentence beginning assessments. In Yoast SEO 5.0, we can now calculate the Flesch Reading Ease score for Italian. This way, you can see exactly what the perceptive level of the text is. We’re continuously researching better ways of implementing language support. In this case, after much deliberation, we’ve upped the maximum sentence length from 20 to 25 based on in-depth research into the use of the Italian language.

The second supported language we’ve enhanced in this release is French. Thanks to Sylvain Perret and Vianney Andre we can now offer full insights and linking suggestion in French. Full support for French is expected soon.

Upwards and onwards

Yoast SEO 5.0 is another milestone release that makes SEO a bit easier for everyone. We’re offering you a new way to look at your site and the content within. We’ve made links visible and usable, so you have to spend less time figuring out how everything is connected. Now, hit that update button and go work on your site structure!

Read on: ‘Why every website needs Yoast SEO’ »