What are the best WordPress SEO plugins and tools that boost website performance? Am sure you’ll want to know.
Am sure you’ll want to know.
But we all know the benefits of SEO are clear:
- Rank pages at the top of the search engine.
- Because you rank high, you attract targeted traffic.
- And this result to increase in conversion rate.
The only question is:
Since the search engine is a major source of traffic to most blogs and websites, what are the SEO tip and plugin that can help improve the SEOof your website?
If you read the article from start to finish, you’ll get to know the 16 best WordPress SEO plugins and tools you can use and thus help in improving your website ranking.
Running a WordPress website can be a daunting task. You’ll have to update the WordPress script, plugins, respond to comment and regularly post great content.
Optimizing your website regularly for the search engines is a sure way of getting targeted traffic that converts.
Content is one key element that will rank your pages. In fact, the search engine is about content.
But content alone is not enough. For a page to appear, the site will have to meet certain search engine conditions.
Sometimes we may not know the little script or links that are affecting the site performance within the search engine.
Doing a guess work will not work in any way. That’s why you’ll need to rely on certain plugins and tools to know your site health towards the search engine.
Each plugin and tools you’ll see shortly perform a major function when ignored can affect the ranking of your website within the search engine. At the end, you’re guaranteed to:
- Fix all website errors that can lower your ranking
- produce SEO friendly content
- fish out links that are affecting the site authority
- find the right keywords to rank for.
Now that we’re ready, let’s dive in.
16 best WordPress SEO plugins and tools that you can use
Despite the popularity of the WordPress SEO plugin and tools, it’s easily possible to mix them up or overlook their importance to your site ranking.
SEO keeps changing and when the changes occur, these sites tells you the new way of SEO. Well, that’s why they’re the among the best WordPress SEO plugins and tools today.
Yoast SEO plugin is a complete WordPress SEO plugin and thus one of the successful WordPress plugins with over 3+ million downloads and counting.
The Yoast WordPress SEO is a complete plugin that improves your WordPress SEO in many ways.
With the plugin, you can be sure of not going against the SEO content format. And this include:
- Adding an SEO title
- Include a meta description
- Knowing the keyword density of each keyword
- Include sitemaps
- Adds Open graph metadata
- Adds ping to search engines whenever the site is updated.
This plugin comes with both free and premium version. The features of the free versions are amazing and come with a lot of benefits.
Here is what the SEO plugin can do for you according to the Yoast SEO plugin team:
- Write better content with Yoast SEO
- Page Analysis
- Technical WordPress Search Engine Optimization
- Meta & Link Elements
- XML Sitemaps
- RSS Optimization
- Edit your .htaccess and robots.txt file
- Social Integration
- Multi-Site Compatible
- Import & Export functionality
- Import functionality for other WordPress SEO plugins
- Yoast SEO Plugin in your Language!
Did I hear you say huge? Well, that’s right.
After installing and activating the plugin, you’ll see the Yoast SEO plugin whenever you intend to add a post or a page.
This is the first thing you’ll see when you scroll down to the bottom of your page or post. Notice at the top, the readability is read and the ‘enter your focus keyword’ gray.
This is because we have not included a content and keyword we’re focusing.
Under the analysis area, everything seems to be read.
But when a content is added, and the focus keyword is known, you’ll begin to see changes.
The green shows that my keyword density is very much okay that’s why green appears under it.
For the readability, I will have to improve the content formatting.
After placing the focus keywords, you’ll notice that the items under analysis have increased. This tells you more about your content and where needs to be adjusted.
Under the analysis tap, you’ll see that we have virtually met the requirement for our pages with the exception of two.
However, when you meet all the requirement, you’ll be sure to know that your page will be indexed and ranked without any issue with the search engines.
SEMrush probably one of my favorite SEO tool and was voted as one the best tool for keyword research by 61 experts.
Here is what Gael Breton has to say about SEMrush: Who doesn’t want to know what their competitors rank for? That’s my #1 way of finding keywords.
Gael is and other experts are right, but with SEMrush, there are more things you can do apart from keyword research.
With SEMrush, you can:
- Find keywords
- Find the keywords your competitors are ranking for
- Find backlinks
- Conduct a competitive analysis
- Competitors advertising strategies
When it comes to finding data, SEMrush is always the best place to start with.
The services offered are paid via subscription and many professionals have been using the tool to grow their business.
Even though it’s a paid subscription tool, you can get a free trial for 14 days if you can subscribe using the link below.
Get one free month of SEMrush Pro
If the experts approve of SEMrush, why not use it? Just try the tool yourself and decide for yourself. The one-month pro plan gives you access to all the tools features.
Sign up for one month free Pro trial
How can you use the SEMrush tool?
As mentioned earlier the tool is a complete tool for SEO analysis.
If we pick an example to do a keyword let’s say “reduce belly fat”, input the term in SEMrush and click search.
We will get the organic search volume and number of results, paid search, CPC distribution, and trend. If you scroll down a bit you’ll see:
On the left side, you’ll get the phrase match keywords and there are 709 in total. You’ll equally see the top five keywords, search volume, and the CPC.
On the left hand, you’ll see related keywords to the main keywords which also includes the keyword volume and CPC.
Going down you’ll see the organic search results on the left and the ads copies on the right.
Well, these are the top pages within the search engine and the best performing ads.
This is good considering that when using SEMrush, finding your competitors will help in knowing the keywords your competitor is ranking for and equally build a relationship with them.
This is an excellent way to do a competitive analysis in other to know what you’re up against and to prepare yourself.
Ahrefs is another top-notch SEO tool with crawling capabilities and site indexing. The tool covers all the primary basis of SEO.
With ahrefs, you can perform Keyword research, competitor’s analysis, backlink checking, organic traffic research, content marketing etc.
Ahrefs index happens every 30 minutes and the fresh data is available for use almost immediately.
The toolset within the ahrefs includes:
- Site Explorer
- SERPs Analysis
Here is a screenshot from ahrefs in for you to understand some of the benefits of using the tool.
The site explorer works similar to that of the majestic site explorer to analyze a domain name, without the subdomain or the domain with it subdomain.
The specificity of the site explorer gives you the option to choose base on the thing you’re searching for.
The use of the site explorer is expected to achieve the following:
- total number of backlinks of the domain
- different referring IP’s
- unique domains,
- the types of backlinks the site has (text, image, redirects, and so on).
The SERP analysis tool shows you the ranking data of an URL in google, bing, and yahoo. The data include:
- Estimated cost
- Ranking URL
- Global search volume
- Advertiser competition
- The last date checked
- Rating (estimated visitors per month based on assumed traffic distribution)
At the end of the analysis, you can create a report for the domain you’re analyzing.
Even if you’re analyzing more than one domain at the same time, you can get the report for a separate domain name.
In other words, each domain will represent data for that domain which you can export the report.
With the labs, you’ll get 3 additional tools you can use.
Ahrefs top- this tool shows you the top domain names by number of backlinks
Domain comparison- Use this tool to compare up to 5 domains to find different link metric
Batch domain- Put lots of URLs and find the total count of backlinks, referring domains, and IP’s.
Google keyword planner
Who can tell you what people are searching and advertising for? if not google.
knowing the keyword ideas of all the things people are searching for is to use the google keyword planner.
Luckily the keyword planner is a free tool you can use to basically find:
- Keywords advertisers can bid for.
- Keywords which you can build your content that you can rank for within the search engine.
For advertisers, you can not only find keywords people are searching for but also you can know the bid for an existing keyword and know what to expect.
Using the google keyword planner, you can search based on the location you want. This gives you leverage to target the right people.
Using the google keyword planner is pretty simple and straight forward. If we pick the keyword ‘Wordpress hosting’ then navigate to the keyword tool.
The first place is where you should enter the keyword you intend to use for the search.
If you’re trying to use a website, then input the URL in the landing page column.
Under targeting and customize your search, you fix it based on your preference.
For instance, under targeting, I could change the country to Nigeria, Language to English and set the date range at last 6 months.
Then I will go on with the search. For our example, I will be using “WordPress hosting as our keyword.
From the left column, you’ll get the keywords, then next the average monthly searches and what advertisers are paying for each keyword.
You can repeat the process using other keywords until you’re convinced to have found the right one for your website.
The keyword tool is one of the free and best free keyword research tools for finding long tail keywords.
The tool works simply by typing the keyword into the search box and hit search.
The keyword tools then use google’s auto suggest feature give you keywords suggestion. Then you can choose the one that will be the best fit for the project at hand.
The google autocomplete suggest keywords are generated based on how often a keyword is used for the search.
In other words, the most frequently search keyword term on google is what the keyword tool suggest to you.
You can also use the tool to find keyword suggestions from bing, youtube, yahoo and app stores.
One great thing about the keyword tool is, it’s easy, fast to use and completely free.
If you’re using WordPress site, you can use the tool to optimize your content.
As an example, just hover to keywordTool.io.
Before you can go on to use the tool you’ll have to choose the platform you’ll want to use. There are about five to choose from and these include, google Youtube, Bing, Amazon and app store.
By default, the tool comes under google and English as the preferred language.
Using our ‘Wordpress hosting’ Keyword, type it in the search box and press enter.
Here we go, a list of keywords from the research. You can go through it or better still export it as a CSV file. This will help you analyze several of the keywords in other to choose the best.
Once you pick a keyword, it’s time to take the next step of action.
This step is important because you want to get a better of what is out there related to the content and how it’s performing in recent past.
That’s where buzzsumo will come into play because it won’t be long before you’ll be analyzing the content that has performed best for the keyword you’ve picked.
If we’re to pick an example of “big data” this is the result you’ll see:
The result you see after the search is:
- First, our top left is the age of the content starting from 24 hours up to all time. You chose the date for the content base on the time frame you desire.
- Secondly, the lower left column shows you the type of content. For big data, we decided to choose all content type. But you can decide to chose based on your preferences.
- Thirdly, the next column is where you see the search result that shows the Title, URL, author and the date the content have been published.
What you see is the fact that it may give you some insight into the title and more.
When you look on the right-hand site, of the page, this is the place where you’ll see the success of the content based on their shares across social networks.
This is not in any way to intimidate you instead to show you the top performing posts within your keywords.
You may not get all that social share at a blow which is very okay.
What the tool shows you are the type of blog content that works best.
This then gives you the direction of content as you move forward.
Why buzzsumo is great is this: the more shares and likes your content gets, the more eyeballs your page will get and these will make the search engine notice your page and reward it with an awesome ranking.
Linkpatrol is a WordPress plugin created by the search engine land
This premium WordPress plugin allows you the total control of all the links on your website.
You can keep observing all the outgoing links on your site and you can find links are giving away link juice as well as which ones are harming the site.
With linkPatrol, you can have efficient and quicker way to address all your spammy links, anchor text and other link problem in an easy and fast way.
Here is a quick overview of what link patrol can do.
- Scan your website to see if your sites have links that are spammy. The first scan will take some time since it’s for the whole website, after that, the remaining one will be done automatically.
- Clean spammy links on your WordPress site
- Get detailed reports about your links based on the domain, who added the links or anchor text. All that report can be exported into a CSV file.
- Ability to include a no follow attribute to bad links without individually, editing each page.
The good news is all happens within your WordPress dashboard.
When installed, the plugin is fast and does not affect the server.
If you want to take control of external links of your website, link patrol is the one WordPress SEO plugin you cannot ignore.
Open site explorer
An open site explorer is a free tool created by Moz, that allows you to check data for any domain name. the tool works similar to that of site explorer of ahrefs.
The tool lets you know the backlinks to a domain name and the anchor texts of any domain.
You can also use the tool to know linking domains, top pages, pages linking to your site etc.
With all the great features, the tool is free, the only limitation is it has a daily search limit per user.
However, to enjoy the other features of the Moz tool, you’ll need to subscribe to the pro plan and you’ll definitely unlock the full power of the Moz tool.
As your blog or website grows, so also is the management. That’s the bitter truth every blogger will face.
However, there are certain plugins that can come in to help and one of such plugins is the broken link checker.
The name of the plugin says it all. It’s a plugin that checks your content for links that have broken or missing images.
This plugin keeps a watchful eye on your content links of your website and notifies you immediately of a broken link.
This keeps your focus on other things not worrying about broken links working against your site.
Broken links are not only boring but having it can equally affect your website ranking.
Some of the top features of the plugin include:
- Monitors all links in content (post, pages, custom fields and comments)
- Detects the links that are broken on individual pages or posts
- Gives the broken link a different appearance within the content
- Gives you the ability to fix broken links without needing to edit the page or post
- Get an email notification whenever there is a broken link.
- Prevents search engines from following the broken link. Making it not to affect your ranking.
The last feature is probably the most important feature the plugin has to offer. However, without the plugin, it will really be difficult to detect and fix the broken links within your website.
To use the broken link checker, you’ll have to log into your WordPress dashboard. Then under tools, you’ll see broken links. Click on it to take you to the main page.
According to the plugin, there are five broken links. Well, an action is required in other to fix the broken links.
When you take your mouse and place it on URL that is broken, there are about five options that will appear that you’ll have to click one to fix the problem.
You can edit the URL, Unlink the link, not broken, dismiss the link or recheck the link.
As you choose the action required, the links are been fixed.
How do you know where your visitors click or engage on your website?
Difficult to know by barely looking right?
Well, that’s what crazy egg will help you do.
Because the crazy egg is a heat map tool which identifies the popular areas of a given page.
This gives you a better understanding of where to put the best stuff that your site visitors will engage.
Some of the features you’ll stand to benefit with crazy egg include:
- Identifies popular areas of your pages
- Shows the part that is working or not working within a given page
- Get more analytics which you cannot get from google
- Know what your users are doing on your pages whether it’s on mobile or full site.
The big question is, what will heatmap do to improve an SEO of a website? Here are some of the takeaway reasons:
- The ideal content length of your website will be revealed to you.
- You can better improve internal linking, which will, in turn, improve your SEO
- Optimize your images becomes easy
- Improve your external link building
- Rinse and repeat
The point here is with crazzyegg, it gives you an insight of how to position things within your website that gives the required eyeballs and improve your SEO.
The SEOquake is an SEO tool that provides SEO related information for any website.
Such SEO information includes Alexa rank, page rank, the age of domain name when the website was last updated and much more.
The tool is available as an add-on for many of the popular browsers that include google chrome, Mozilla firefox, opera and safari web browser.
Another important thing the SEOquake toolbar can do is to show you all the parameters listed above for all the search result.
As a result, you can be able to find different keywords your competitors are ranking for.
At the end, you can download all the search result in a CSV file format, study it and know the keywords you’re going to target.
There are two forms of links you can find online, the do follow and no follow links.
When you link to an external site using do follow, you’re giving away some of your site authority that link.
But you can change all that if you don’t like giving away some of your site’s authority by adding a no follow attribute to the link.
Using a WordPress site, you can turn all external link to follow, but that may not be a good idea.
This is simply because you may want to really give away some link authority to a helpful site. Besides, you first found the content useful that’s why you’re linking to it.
In WordPress, there is a cool plugin called Rel Nofollow checkbox which when installed, can add a checkbox in the insert link popup of the WordPress editor.
When adding a link, be it internal or external, the plugin popup and you can easily decide to make the link no follow or not.
All in one SEO pack is one of the best WordPress SEO plugins with over a million downloads.
Due to the wide range of features within the plugin, you’re sure of creating a user-friendly SEO WordPress site.
The plugin is very user-friendly and helps you optimize your site for search without needing the technical ability to do so. The installation and setting are pretty straight forward.
Once you’re done, you can set up your site base on your needs.
The plugin optimizes your blog posts for the search engines like google, bing, and yahoo automatically.
Under the advanced option, you can setup your one different title, meta description and keywords overwriting the default ones based on your requirement.
SEO Ultimate plugin is also a free SEO plugin for WordPress. In the plugin, you’ll find all the required SEO options that will help in optimizing your site.
With this plugin, you’ll have full control over how your content appears within the search engine.
Because you’ll have control over meta titles, descriptions, auto-linking, rich-snippets, open graph, 404 monitoring etc.
This literally means that you can edit your meta description of your pages and post which will be appealing and engaging when it appears within the search engine results.
Another key feature this plugin gives is the ability to add unique rich snippet code which makes your post or pages standout within the search engine.
SEO by Squirrly
If we’re discussing the best WordPress SEO plugins, then squirrely SEO plugin will have to come into play.
Because with this plugin, you’re sure of creating a content that is search engine friendly and useful.
In other words, your pages will have a better ranking and thus keeps your user engagement always.
Again because the plugin works well, over 100 content marketing experts have recommended the use of the plugin.
The plugin does not just help you create friendly search engine content alone but keeps you updated with SEO stats related to your pages, weekly SEO audits and finds the keywords that can drive you targeted traffic.
The plugin works along with WordPress SEO by Yoast or with all in one SEO without having to create any compatibility issues.
Before publishing a post, this plugin will notify you on whether the content has passed all SEO requirements. If so then you’ll be 100% sure that your content is SEO friendly.
The squirrely plugin does the work of giving you the best possible suggestions when you’re in the process of writing and editing your content.
With Squirrely you can:
- Find long tail keywords that are easy to rank for.
- Ability to target each country differently
- Provides tracking for important keywords
- Check your search engine ranking based on country
- Get SEO tip in real time as you write and edit which makes page optimization easy.
- Get SEO settings and SEO live assistance
All in all, you’ll have about 108 SEO features that will optimize and power your WordPress SEO.
Squirrely is a most have a plugin for those who want to have SEO friendly pages for a website.
Internal linking can be called an on page SEO. This is really an important aspect of SEO where your pages are discovered and indexed by the search engine.
Therefore proper internal linking is key to improving your search engine ranking.
One plugin that gives you the best out of internal linking is the SEO internal link plugin.
This plugin finds and automatically links keywords and phrases in your post, pages, and comments.
There are several other settings that you can leverage in other to build a perfect linking for your site which improves the ranking of your site.
Getting the best out of your website is crucial for success. But more importantly, it’s these best WordPress SEO plugins and tools that do the job while you focus on the things that matter.
You might not use all the tools listed above, but find the one that best will do the job for you and brings out the best output.
The search engine will continue to evolve and grow, but it’s these tools that will always show you the best way to go about it.