Welcome to Casey’s SEO and today we’re going to be looking at the Yoast plugin for WordPress. This is basically an SEO plugin and I’m going to just run through a quick couple kind of tips that I suggest just you guys work with if you’re using Yoast SEO. So let’s jump over to the computer and I’m going to show you guys those tips. Yoast SEO is a free plugin. So when you are on your WordPress website, just go ahead to the plugins tab over here, hit Add New, find Yoast, go ahead, download it and activate it.
Once it is activated you will see a tab on the left hand side that says Yoast SEO. So one of the first things you’re going to want to do is go to the general section here, go over to features and make sure the XML sitemap is turned on. Then if you hit this question mark you will be able to see the XML site maps that it is generating for you. Now once you load this page up, you may find that is creating a site map that you do not want indexed and generally you can go back through the settings and turn those off. The next tab is the Search appearance tab and from here you can go through and make different changes.
Like for example, the first one here is Title Separator. So how do you want your title separated? Do you want it by a dash or a longer dash? Semicolons? A handlebar?
You have different options you can choose from. You can go over to the content types and then you can pretty much tell it what results you want them to show on search engines. So essentially is it indexed or no indexed and you can go through and make changes on those. The next one you can click on is Tools and if you need to make any changes to your robots TXT file, you can go ahead and hit this file editor button, make any changes you need to hit Save and they will automatically update your robots TXT file. The last one is the redirect section.
So if you need to make a redirect and you don’t want to use an additional plug in, you can always add any redirects here. And if you want to use the Yoast Premium plugin, when you make a redirect or change a URL, it will pop up a box and it will ask you if you automatically want to make this a redirect and you just hit okay and that will make the redirect really simple and quick for you. Now the next thing we’re going to be looking at here is how to use the SEO from an SEO standpoint. So if I have a blog, I’m going to go ahead and hit Edit. We’ll get into the back end of the blog post here and you will see right up top we have the title and then the box below is going to say Yoast SEO or Yoast SEO Premium depending on what version that you have.
And then you can put in a focus keyword for what you want your article about and then it’s going to start giving you some scores or some smiley faces that are either red, green or orange. And it’s just going to show you how optimized this web page is for the focus keyword. Now keep in mind these are just generalizations, so if you want to follow some of these tips, you can definitely go ahead and do that. And then here you’ll see what the web page will look like. So you have your title up top, you have your meta description and then you have your image.
So right below you’ll find SEO title. And I would highly recommend you create your SEO title and make it potentially a little bit different than the title that you’re using. But let’s just say you have a really short or really long title depending on what you’re going for. You may want to then either shorten up or make your title longer, just as long as you keep it within like the 155-160 characters. And you’ll see if you start typing in more content how it got red.
Now eventually you’re going to see that the title is cut off. Now even sometimes it may say is green and the title could potentially still be cut off in the search results. Or you could have your title a little bit longer and be in the red and it will show up just fine in the search results. So just keep that in mind. Next you will see how the URL is actually laid out in the slug section.
So if you want to go ahead and change that URL, you can just make changes here. Hit update and if you’re using the premium version and you need to redirect it, it will ask you to redirect to the new URL. Next we have the meta description. So go ahead and type in your meta description for your article. And then if we click on either the SEO analysis or Premium SEO analysis, it’s going to give you some tips of what you’ve done well and what you may need to improve on.
So for example, this says the key phrase in the SEO title, not all works from your key phrase. How long does SEO take to work appear in the title? Now sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t. I believe my focus keyword is the same as my actual title but in here. So good catch.
I actually did not change the title from a previous post. So there you can go back and make changes based on that tip. Go ahead and you’ll hit update. So if you sometimes forget or maybe you duplicated the page, which in this case I did, and I just forgot to go in and change the title. Now you can go through these checklists, make sure you have everything.
Maybe green or orange. It just depends on what your goal is for the article. But like I said, it gives you some rough ideas. So go ahead and check those out and then hit Update once you’re done making any changes. And then your article should be at least a little bit more SEO prepared compared to just typing in your main title and hitting Update.
There was a quick run through of Yoast SEO and you saw how easy it was to make changes and optimize your content. And you even saw where I made a mistake. And going through the Yoast’s SEO checklist, I was actually able to find my mistake, make an improvement, and hopefully that article will be a little bit more optimized since I will actually have the correct title getting displayed on the search results. So if you guys enjoyed this little SEO tip and you want more SEO tips, make sure to hit that subscribe button. And if you guys have any questions or comments, leave them below.
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