Well, it was fun while it lasted. In Yoast SEO 7.6, we’re reverting the longer meta descriptions in the snippet editor to comply with Google’s latest change. That’s not all though, we’ve also updated our support for the Russian language, added transition words for Catalan, redirect support for WP-CLI and fixed several bugs. Find out all about Yoast SEO 7.6.

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Meta descriptions back to 156 characters

We’ve talked about Google’s decision to roll back the expanded snippet length for meta descriptions quite a bit. If you’ve been hiding under a rock, Google recently returned to their old 156 character limit for the snippets after upping it to 320 characters for about half a year. Read Marieke’s post about shorter snippets for meta descriptions if you want to know what to make of all this. Of course, this change means that Yoast SEO has to adapt as well. In Yoast SEO 7.6, we’ve changed the length of the meta description field to 156 characters. This is not a ‘hard’ limit, you’re still welcome to write longer meta desciptions, although these might get truncated in the snippets.

Keep in mind, that meta descriptions itself can be much longer — Google has said many times that there is no set limit. In addition, Google still likes to show these longer meta descriptions. It also loves to generate its own meta description if it thinks it can do better than yours. But the snippets you see in the search results pages now tend to be a lot fewer characters than before.

Read more: ‘How to use Yoast SEO to write an awesome meta description’ »

New language updates for Russian and Catalan

In last month’s release — Yoast SEO 7.5 —, we added full language support for Russian. This made it possible for Russian language users to get feedback on their writing and to get links suggested by the internal linking tool. One piece was missing, though. The Flesch reading ease score took a bit more fine-tuning to get it to make sense for the Russian language. That work is done, so you can now use it for Russian as well.

A community effort brought us transition words for the Catalan language. You can use transition words — like ‘contràriament’, ‘resumint’ and ‘en primer lloc’ — to make connections between different parts of your text. Using them well makes your text a lot easier and more enjoyable to read. Find out more in Marieke’s article on transition words and SEO.

Yoast SEO Premium: WP-CLI commands to manage redirects

The command line interface, or CLI, is an excellent tool for developers. It gives them quick access to their whole development environment and beyond that: the world. WP-CLI is WordPress’ CLI and it helps developers to reach, update and develop WordPress sites quickly. Today, we’re introducing a new tool for these developers: WP-CLI commands to manage redirects. These commands let you view, make and edit redirects right from your CLI. Curious? Install WP-CLI and type wp yoast redirect.

Bugfixes and enhancements

With every new release, we set out to fix bugs to take away small annoyances. Also, we try to enhance the plugin wherever we can to make it run better. In Yoast SEO 7.6, we fixed several bugs concerning keyword usage, translations, warnings and an instance where the button for the internal linking counter didn’t work. Read about all the bug fixes and enhancements in the full changelog for this release.

Update now

As always, read up on the update and update whenever you feel ready. If you don’t feel confident updating your live site without testing, please try it out on a test site to see if everything works as it should. Thanks for using Yoast SEO and happy updating!

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

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In our major Yoast SEO 7.0 update, there was a bug concerning attachment URL’s. We quickly resolved the bug, but some people have suffered anyhow (because they updated before our patch). This post serves both as a warning and an apology. We want to ask all of you to check whether your settings for the redirect of the attachment URL’s are correct. And, for those of you who suffered from a decrease in rankings because of incorrect settings, we offer a solution that Google has OKed as well.

Is redirect attachment URLs set to “Yes”?

You need to check this manually: unless you have a very specific reason to allow attachment URLs to exist (more on that below), the setting should be set to “Yes” . If the setting says “Yes”, you’re all set. You can find this setting in Search Appearance, in the tab Media.

media attachment urls setting in Yoast SEO

Is your attachment URL set to “No”?

If your attachment URL is set to “no”, there are two different scenario’s which could apply to you. You could intentionally have set this setting to “no”, but the setting  could also be turned to “no” without your intent.

Intentionally set to “No”

If you intentionally put the setting of the attachment URL to “No”, you’ll probably be aware of that fact. In that case, your attachment URL’s are an important aspect of your site. You’re linking actively to these pages and these pages have real content on them (more than just a photo). This could for instance apply to a photography site. If you want this setting to say “No”, you’ll probably have put a lot of thought in this. In this case, you can leave your setting to “no”. You’re all set!

Unintentionally set to “No”

It is also possible that you notice that the setting is set to “No” and this was not intentionally. You’ve suffered from our bug. We’re so very sorry. You should switch your toggle to “Yes” and save the changes. Perhaps you need to do a little bit more, though. There are (again) two scenario’s:

Traffic and ranking is normal

Ask yourself the following question: have you noticed any dramatic differences in your rankings and traffic in the last three months (since our 7.0 update of march 6th)? If the answer to this question is no, than you should just turn the redirect setting of the attachment URL to “Yes” and leave it at that. You did not suffer from any harm in rankings, probably because you’re not using attachment URL’s all that much anyway. This will be the case for most sites. After switching your toggle to “Yes” and saving the changes, you’re good to go!

Traffic and ranking have decreased

In the second scenario, you notice that the redirect attachment URL setting is set to “No” and you did indeed suffer from a dramatic decrease in traffic and ranking. We’re so very sorry about that. Make sure to switch the setting of the attachment URL to “Yes” immediately.  In order to help you solve your ranking problem, we have built a search index purge plugin. Download and install this plugin here. More on the working of this separate plugin below.

What to do if you’re not sure

If you’re not sure whether you’ve been affected by this, and your Google Search Console is inconclusive: don’t do anything other than setting the setting to “Yes”. See “What did Google say” below for the rationale.

What do attachment URL’s do anyway?

When you upload an image in WordPress, WordPress does not only store the image, it also creates a separate so-called attachment URL for every image. These attachment URLs are very “thin”: they have little to no content outside of the image. Because of that fact, they’re bad for SEO: they inflate the number of pages on your site while not increasing the amount of quality content. This is something that WordPress does, which our plugin takes care off (if the setting is correctly turned to “Yes”).

Historically, we had had a (default off) setting that would redirect the attachment URL for an image to the post the image was attached to. So if I uploaded an image to this post, the attachment URL for that image would redirect to this post. In the old way of dealing with this, it meant that images added for other reasons (like say, a site icon, or a page header you’d add in the WordPress customizer), would not redirect.  It also meant that if you used an image twice, you could not be certain where it would redirect.

In Yoast SEO 7.0 we introduced a new feature to deal with these pages. Now, we default to redirecting the attachment URL to the image itself. This basically means attachment URLs no longer exist on your site at all. This actually is a significant improvement.

What did the bug do (wrong)?

The bug was simple yet very painful: when you updated from an earlier version of Yoast SEO to Yoast SEO 7.0-7.0.2 (specifically those versions), we would not always correctly convert the setting you had for the old setting into the new one. We accidentally set the setting to ‘no’. Because we overwrote the old settings during the update, we could not revert this bug later on.

The impact of the bug

For some sites our bug might have a truly bad impact. In Twitter and Facebook discussions I’ve had, I’ve been shown sites that had the number of indexed URLs on their site quintupled, without adding any content. Because with that setting being “No” XML sitemaps was enabled for attachments. As a result of that, lots and lots of attachment URLs got into Google’s index. Some of those sites are now suffering from Panda-like problems. The problem will be specifically big if you have a lot of pictures on your website and few high quality content-pages. In these cases,  Google will think you’ve created a lot of ‘thin content’ pages all of a sudden.

The vast majority of the websites running Yoast SEO probably hasn’t suffered at all. Still, we messed up. I myself, am sorry. More so than normal, because I came up with and coded this change myself…

What did Google say?

We have good contacts at Google and talk to them regularly about issues like these. In this case, we discussed it with John Mueller and his first assessment was similar to mine: sites should normally not suffer from this. That’s why we don’t think drastic measures are needed for everyone. Let me quote him:

“Sites generally shouldn’t be negatively affected by something like this. We often index pages like that for normal sites, and they usually don’t show up in search. If they do show up for normal queries, usually that’s a sign that the site has other, bigger problems. Also, over the time you mentioned, there have been various reports on twitter & co about changes in rankings, so if sites are seeing changes, I’d imagine it’s more due to normal search changes than anything like this.”

We’ve also discussed potential solutions with him. The following solution has been OK’d by him as the best and fastest solution.

What does this search index purge plugin do?

The purpose of the search index purge plugin is to purge attachment URLs out of the search results as fast as possible. Just setting the Yoast SEO attachment URL redirect setting to “Yes” isn’t fast enough. When you do that, you no longer have XML sitemaps or anything else that would make Google crawl those pages, and thus it could take months for Google to remove those URLs. That’s why I needed to be creative.

Installing this plugin will do the following two things:

  • Every attachment URL will return a 410 status code.
  • A static XML sitemap, containing all the attachment URLs on a given site will be created. The post modified date for each of those URLs is the activation date and time of the plugin.

The XML sitemap with recent post modified date will make sure that Google spiders all those URLs again. The 410 status code will make sure Google takes them out of its search results in the fastest way possible.

After six months the attachment URLs should be gone from the search results. You should then remove the search index purge plugin, and keep the redirect setting of the attachment URLs set to “Yes”.

Advice: keep informed!

We try to do the very best we can to help you get the best SEO out of your site. We regularly update our configuration wizard and there is no harm whatsoever in running through it again. Please regularly check if your site’s settings are still current for your site. We do make mistakes, and this release in particular has led us to a rigorous post mortem on all the stages of this release’s process.

We regularly write about things that change in Google, so stay up to date by subscribing to our newsletter below. If you want to understand more of the how and why of all this, please do also take our new, free, SEO for Beginners course, which you’ll get access to when you sign up.

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Internal linking should be one of the key focus points in your SEO strategy. It’s my favorite aspect of SEO because it’s so very actionable. The Yoast SEO Premium plugin helps you set up a great internal linking structure very easily. And now, you get a 15% discount on the Yoast SEO Premium plugin! So let me explain the importance of a great internal linking structure. Learn how to get your site indexed by Google AND get a good ranking.

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Context is the SEO word of 2018

A lot of information about how Google works comes from patents. Whenever Google comes up with new technology, the next step is often to claim a patent. Studying these patents gives us lots of information about what Google is up to. These days, what keeps coming up is context. Bill Slawski, an SEO veteran, calls context the search term of the year.

In my opinion, Bill is right. Context is what helps Google make sense of the world around us. For instance, Google does not rank a text on the term ‘ballet shoes’ just because you use the word ‘ballet shoes’ in every other sentence. Google is getting better and better at figuring out what a text is about and how to fit it in the grand scheme of things. Google can read texts, so understanding of the context, synonyms, related words and concepts becomes critical. My post about related entities contains some more thoughts on this matter.

The context of internal links is important

The context in which we embed internal links is also becoming increasingly important. Google can determine whether or not links are useful to a reader, on the base of the text in which we’ve embedded these links. Relevant links are helpful for the user. Links that make sense will help with rankings of a post. If a post has lots of good contextual links from other pages, it will have a higher chance of ranking. So the context of a link, for example, the sentence in which we use a link is crucial for Google to establish whether or not a particular page should rank well in the search results pages. Text links within blog posts are, therefore, more valuable than random links in a footer.

Internal linking matters in two ways

Internal linking is imperative for SEO because of two reasons. For one, it is essential to get your site indexed. As Google crawls links, you’ll need links to every post and page on your site to make sure that Google comes around often enough to get your site saved in the index. Two, and more importantly, you need internal links to get your site ranked well. And that’s where the context of the internal links comes in. Links embedded in a meaningful context will help rank your site more than links in the footer of a text.

Internal links are a necessity to get your site indexed. The context of internal links is essential to get your site ranked — and how it gets ranked.

Yoast SEO helps with internal linking

Linking related content can seem daunting, especially if you’ve written a lot of articles. The internal linking tool of Yoast SEO Premium will help you set up an excellent, coherent and contextual internal linking structure. Our internal linking tool analyzes your texts and uses word analysis to determine which blog posts and articles are on similar topics. We show these suggestions to you in the sidebar, making it very easy to add related text links to these articles in your blog post. We have a couple of posts on why you should use it and how to use the internal linking tool.

Get started right away!

Improving your internal linking structure isn’t that hard. You can start enhancing your site today! Yoast SEO Premium will analyze all of your blog posts and makes suggestions for internal links to add to your posts. So, stop making excuses and get to it! And if you buy Yoast SEO Premium today, you’ll benefit from a 15% discount!

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

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The Russian language is huge; 265 million people have Russian as their first or second language, making it the world’s eight most used language. What’s more, according to W3Techs Russian is the second most used language online — following English by a huge margin. As of today, all of the Russian language WordPress users can get their content checked thanks to new language support in Yoast SEO 7.5.

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Russian language readability analysis and internal linking

We’ve been steadily growing the number of language we support in our readability analysis and internal linking tools. We started out with English, but now support a rapidly expanding roster of some of the world’s most used languages, like French, German, Spanish and Italian. The next language to join that club is Russian.

Now, Russian is a complex language that has its own set of rules and needs to be addressed differently. Natalia Shitova, one of our developers, researched, built and tested the Russian language support for Yoast SEO. I asked her how she did it.

Building the Russian language support

“When I joined the Yoast team two months ago I was the first Russian-speaking member. It was immediately clear that my #1 task would be to develop the Russian readability analysis. Our lovely Russian-speaking users could use something more than SEO checks and I could have fun with developing an analysis for my mother tongue,” Natalia says.

Working with Russian morphology

“The hardest part was the famous Russian morphology – think different forms of words that you need for different cases, numbers, tenses, voices, and combinations thereof. For instance, the word “mom” in English has two forms – “mom” and “moms”. The Russian “мама” has nine. And how many ways are there to use the word “one” in English? I see two again – “one” and “ones”. The Russian analog (fasten your seatbelt now!) has 13. Thirteen! Any meaningful content analysis will have to deal with morphology. After all, you need to know that all these 13 forms are the same word. Luckily, the Russian morphology is very well described in books, but we had to think about how to feed that monster to our butterfly plugin, which should work on the fly inside your browser. So this release is our first attempt to build lightweight yet powerful content analysis for a language with a mind-blowing morphology. More improvements are coming soon!”

“This release is our first attempt to build lightweight yet powerful content analysis for a language with a mind-blowing morphology”

russian readability analysis yoast seo 7.5

No Russian Flesch Reading Ease check yet

Russian support is almost complete, but you won’t find the Flesch Reading Ease score yet. According to Natalia, it’s quite a challenge to adopt the well-known Flesch Reading Ease check to produce something that’s useful for the Russian language. Natalia explains:

“You might notice that contrary to other supported languages we did not include Flesch Reading Ease check in the Russian readability analysis. Yes, there is a well-established formula for calculating Flesch index for Russian. No, we were not happy with how it worked. We tested the formula using a massive corpus of texts and it was almost impossible to receive a score above 50. This means no green bullet for you unless you write for small kids. “That is not kind,” we thought, “not encouraging, and totally not helpful!” I adjusted the formula a little, so that it returns a somewhat more realistic estimate of readability. With that recalibration you can use our Flesch readability check from the next release onwards.”

This work is now done and we’ll add the results in the next release, Yoast SEO 7.6.

Bug fixes

It’s always great to add support for a new language, but that’s not all we did. As always, we’ve fixed a number of bugs. Also, we improved the accessibility of the plugin. For instance, we fixed a bug that treated sentences ending in multiple sentence marks, exclamation marks or ellipses as multiple sentences. We’ve also fixed a bug where OpenGraph images with specific aspect ratios were causing unexpected results if you wanted to share these on Facebook. For the time being, we’ve removed the aspect ratio check completely. Of course, you can find all bug fixes and enhancements in the changelog on WordPress.org.

Update now to Yoast SEO 7.5

So there you have it: Yoast SEO 7.5 is another great update. This update brings our readability analysis to millions of Russian language users. As a result, each and every one our users can now improve their online content using the world-famous green bullet system. Here’s to better Russian language online content!

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

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Please welcome to the stage: Yoast SEO 7.4! In this release, we’ve squashed a number of bugs and focused on enhancing the way Yoast SEO works with OpenGraph images. We also made some other enhancements that improve the way the plugin functions. Happy updating! 

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Yoast SEO: the #1 WordPress SEO plugin Info

Improved handling of images

Images are very important for several reasons: not only do your readers love to see them while reading your post, but they are indispensable if you want to do well in image search — which is becoming more important by the day. Image SEO, therefore, is a thing. There’s another reason images are important: social images can attract a great deal of traffic to your site or social media profile. Luckily, Yoast SEO can help you up your social image game.

For some years, you have been able to preview how your social posts will look when shared with Yoast SEO Premium. Most social media platforms use the OpenGraph protocol to determine what should be shown and how. In Yoast SEO 7.4, we’ve made some improvements to how the plugin handles OpenGraph images. For starters, we now add OpenGraph image dimension-meta tags to more images. We also exclude images in OpenGraph meta tags that are larger than 2MB as we want to keep everything running smoothly. Yoast SEO can now also append the image alt tag to the OpenGraph output, using the meta tag og:image:alt. Last but not least, we’ve added caching for images in posts to reduce load time. We’re diving deeper into how different platforms use OpenGraph to handle images and we’re hoping to do more with images in the future.

If you want to really dive into this and learn more about the choices we made and why we made them you should definitely read this post on open graph tags by Jono!

Dropping support for PHP 5.2

In Yoast SEO 7.3, we’re now showing a message warning you about dropping support for the ancient PHP 5.2 in an upcoming version. As you might know, anything before PHP 7.0 is quickly running towards end-of-life. There are, however, still a lot of people and hosting companies that use ancient software to power their servers. Please upgrade your servers if possible! Here’s how Joost put it some time ago:

“The why is three-pronged: security, speed, and future-proofing. PHP 5.2 hasn’t been updated for years and has serious issues. PHP 7 is lightning fast, up to 400% faster than 5.2. You might even regard this as a green move; you can use 50% fewer servers to get the same results from PHP 7. Last but not least, developers can finally use all the modern technologies to bring WordPress to the next level.”

Other improvements and fixes

To more rigorously determine if posts and pages are viewable and accessible, we’ve added the is_post_type_viewable WordPress function to improve support for the wpseo_accessible_post_types filters. Among other things, we’ve fixed some bugs that kept some database tables from being removed when you deleted a sub-site from a multisite environment. To cap it off, we’ve fixed a bug where deleting multiple posts could cause performance issues. Thanks to Abolfazl Moeini for finding and fixing that.

Please update

As always, our advice is to update to the newest release of Yoast SEO so you can get the latest and greatest. In Yoast SEO 7.4, we’ve improved how we handle OpenGraph images and added several other enhancements that make the plugin better. Thanks for using Yoast SEO!

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

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Two weeks ago, Yoast SEO 7.2 brought a solid update to the import features of the plugin. In Yoast SEO 7.3, we’ve expanded this improved importer with a slew of newly supported plugins you can import your data from. Find out which plugins we support in this post. But of course, there’s more!

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Yoast SEO: the #1 WordPress SEO plugin Info

Importing from even more WordPress SEO plugins

We have always made it easy for users of other WordPress SEO plugins to migrate their settings to Yoast SEO. The last couple of years, we offered support for all the big players: HeadSpace2, All in One SEO, JetPack SEO, WooThemes SEO Framework, wpSEO, SEO Ultimate and SEOpressor. Today, — in addition to improving import from wpSEO — we’re adding a long list of newly supported plugins from which you can import your data:

  • Premium SEO Pack
  • Smartcrawl SEO
  • Squirrly SEO
  • Platinum SEO Pack
  • SEO Framework
  • Greg’s High Performance SEO
  • WP Meta SEO

Yoast SEO Premium users can also import redirects from other redirection WordPress plugins. The redirects manager in Premium is a great tool that helps you to make and manage redirects.

Updated translations

Yoast SEO 7.3 isn’t just about importing stuff, because it’s about translations as well. We’ve updated the translations of almost all locales, plus we’ve added quite a few new locales to our premium plugins like Local SEO, WooCommerce SEO and News SEO. We strive that everyone on earth can use our SEO plugins in their native language and this is a big step in that direction. Of course, we couldn’t have done it without our awesome community! You’re welcome to help out if you don’t see your language yet or if you can think you can improve the current translation. Please visit translate.yoast.com and get started!

Fixes and enhancements

We have enhanced Yoast SEO in several ways. Among other things, we fixed a number of bugs that caused several filters to give unwanted results. One of the new enhancements is support for Baidu Webmaster Tools verification. You can now verify your site just like you do for Yandex, Bing and Google. Find out how to add your sitemap to these search engines.

Update now!

Yoast SEO 7.3 is a solid new update. We’ve fixed several issues, improved translations and added a ton of plugin support to the importer. You can now import settings from every major WordPress SEO plugin. This makes it easier for you to make the transition from other plugins to Yoast SEO. With that, I can only give you one last advice: please update!

Read more: ‘The beginner’s guide to Yoast SEO’ »

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These past few weeks were all about the 7.0 release of Yoast SEO. That release brought many changes and made a lot of SEO work easier to understand and do. In 7.1 we fixed some bugs, improved the importers and added a new language to our roster: Portuguese. Yoast SEO 7.2 — out now — is taking it a bit easier. No substantial new features, but enough improvements all around.

Better import from All in One SEO Pack

Over the past few releases, we’ve been steadily improving and enhancing the data importers in Yoast SEO. We’re slowly getting there and Yoast SEO 7.2 adds another new enhancement to one particular importer: the one for All in One SEO Pack. As of now, we can import noindex, nofollow and OpenGraph tags from this WordPress SEO plugin. Also, we’ve fixed a bug that could overwrite existing Yoast SEO data when importing data from All in One SEO Pack.

Bug fixes in Yoast SEO 7.2

As always, we ran into bugs that we needed to fix. Some we uncover ourselves, while others are handed to us by our highly valued community. In Yoast SEO 7.2, we needed to fix several bugs. Some are very small, like the Ryte notification that didn’t go away when users turned the feature. But some are more serious, like a bug where attachments connected to password-protected posts ended up in the sitemaps.

A couple of other fixes were related to the wpseo_robots filter where setting a page to noindex did not correctly remove the canonical element. In Yoast SEO Premium, there were issues regarding the handling of changes in parent/child relationships of pages; we have resolved these all. Of course, you can check the changelog for Yoast SEO 7.2 to see what else was fixed.

What are you waiting for: update now!

With every release, we keep the ball rolling at Yoast HQ. We’re finetuning, fixing and improving anywhere we can. Since Yoast SEO is open source, you can help us make Yoast SEO even better. Why don’t you follow our GitHub account to see what we’re working on? If you have issues, features request or enhancements don’t be afraid to post them. Please follow the instructions in the Yoast Contribution Guidelines.

This wraps up our bi-weekly release update. We now just have one more assignment for you: update now!

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

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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.

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Two weeks ago, we released one of our most significant updates yet: Yoast SEO 7.0. This release featured some much-needed spring-cleaning and a wholly revamped XML sitemap experience. In it, the focus is much less on the sitemap as it is on easily getting indexed what you want to get indexed. Yoast SEO 7.1 — out today — builds on that release with fixes and enhancements.

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First up: support for Portuguese

As you know, Yoast SEO understands quite a few languages. While most of the content checks work for every language, there are instances where the checks are language-specific. The list is pretty impressive right now and keeps growing. We support English, German, Dutch, French, Italian and Spanish in various degrees. Today, we’re adding a brand-new language: Portuguese.

More than 200 million people speak Portuguese natively, making it the sixth most popular language in the world. Thanks to our friend Dilmar Ames, we have now taken the first steps towards full support for Portuguese. While it’s still early days for the content analyses, the insights and internal linking suggestions features in Portuguese are fully developed. Users of Yoast SEO Premium can enjoy these two great features to enhance their posts and improve their site structure.

Also, we fixed a couple of other language-related issues. For instance, we added a filter to mark Spanish sentences as non-passive when certain exception words occur between the auxiliary and the participle. The list of exception words includes all forms of the copula ‘estar’.

Enhancements

Besides expanding our knowledge of the world’s languages, we’ve also improved the plugin in various regards.

Importing from other SEO plugins

Yoast SEO 7.1 now detects if you can import data from other SEO plugins data. It allows you to import this data on the Import from other plugins page. After importing, you can check whether the import was successfull and then delete the data. To help you set up your titles and descriptions correctly, we decided we should not import title & description templates from other plugins. You can run the configuration wizard to set up your templates properly.

Filters and variables

Thanks to Akinori Musha, we’ve added support for a new template variable %%archive_title%%. This gives access to the utility function called get_the_archive_title() which gives a nicely localized title for the current archive page.

We’re now providing developers extra context if they want to replace posts and taxonomies. To do this, we’ve added an additional argument to wpseo_replacements filter. This makes it possible to access post, taxonomy or term instances when applying the filter.

To top it off, we’ve removed the Facebook Insights functionality as it’s no longer supported. Plus, we’ve increased the height of the meta description box so it matches the maximum amount of characters without needing a scrollbar.

Fixing bugs

Coming from such a big release like Yoast SEO 7.0 there are always a few bugs to fix. Thanks to our awesome GitHub community, we were able to track and fix quite a few of them. Let’s go over a couple of them. For instance, we fixed a bug where the rewrite rules weren’t correctly removed after stripping the category base. This resulted in 404s. Now, you can safely remove /category/ from your URLs again and it should correctly update itself.

There was also a weird issue where you enabled the Show blog page in the breadcrumb settings, it’d be disabled and vice versa. Previously, it showed the wrong breadcrumb path when using a static blog page and Show Blog page is set to hide.

There were some performance issues reported with the release of Yoast SEO 7.0.2 which we fixed by improving WPSEO_Options::get. This is the main function we use throughout the plugin to fetch settings. This is only a small sampling of the work that went into Yoast SEO 7.1. For a complete list of all the fixed bugs, please check the changelog.

Update to Yoast SEO 7.1 now

Coming hot on the heels of Yoast SEO 7.0, 7.1 packs quite a few enhancements and bug fixes. These fixes improve the way the plugins function and increases stability. We’re still actively cleaning up our plugins to make sure they are lean and mean. So, don’t forget to update!

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

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Your keyword research is done and you know what to write about. Nothing is going to stop you from getting all that traffic with your new articles. But when you start writing your article, you notice it can be hard to keep your text focused. Yoast SEO Premium has a helpful little tool to guide you: prominent words in Insights. Here, I’ll show you how it works.

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

Yoast SEO: the #1 WordPress SEO plugin Info

What is Yoast SEO Insights?

Yoast SEO Insights is a section in the Readability part of the plugin that is meant to hold tools that give you more insights into what you are writing. Currently, the section holds the Prominent words check. Our plugin analyzes your text in real time and provides you with a list of words you use most in your article.

By checking the prominent words against your intended keyword(s) for this post, you should see if there are any discrepancies. If you write about ‘off-page SEO’ and the most prominent word in your text is ‘on-page SEO’ you’re probably going in the wrong direction. You can edit your text until it becomes more focused on your main focus keyword and its supporting or related keywords.

What’s more, you might find new words in that list that should really be on your keyword list. Great, add them to the list and maybe even write a new post about them.

Prominent words are not tied to the SEO and readability analyses in Yoast SEO. Follow their lead to find out if you’ve used your focus keyword correctly and use the prominent words feature to get an idea of what your artice is actually about. If it doesn’t align with your goals you can fix that.

insights prominent words yoast seo

Internal linking uses Yoast SEO Insights

The prominent words feature is a great tool to help you focus your text. While using it, you can get a good feel of where your text is going and you can make changes right away or after you’ve finished your draft. In addition, the prominent words also serve another purpose as they are used to determine which articles are suggested by our internal linking tool.

The internal linking tool is also a premium feature and it suggests links to add to your article based on what you write. These suggestions are super relevant and by automatically suggesting them, you won’t have to find them yourself. Click on the icon and paste the link over the relevant piece of text.

Want the prominent words check? Get Premium!

Both the prominent words in insights and the internal linking features are available in Yoast SEO Premium. In addition to these two cool tools, you’ll also get, among other things, a killer redirects manager, the possibility to optimize your articles for multiple focus keywords and social previews for Twitter and Facebook.

What are you waiting for, go get it!

Read more: ‘SEO copywriting: the ultimate guide’ »

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