seo cirebon How to Install and Setup by Yoast WordPress SEO Plugin Not too long ago, one of the elite developers of WordPress, Joost de Valk (@yoast), released his own version of a SEO plugin called WordPress SEO by Yoast. Joost calls it the most complete all in one SEO solution for your WordPress blog, and we have to agree that YES it is the most complete one. With tons of features and options, this plugin is not as simple as the famous “All in One SEO Pack“, but again it is certainly worth to upgrade to this one if you want a complete solution. In this article, we will show you how to install and setup WordPress SEO Plugin by Yoast and utilize all the awesome features that comes built-in.
First let’s take a look at the features this plugin has to offer:
- Post title and meta description meta box to change these on a per post basis.
- Taxonomy (tag, category & custom taxonomy) title and meta description support.
- Google search result snippet previews.
- Focus keyword testing.
- Meta Robots configuration:
- Easily add noodp, noydir meta tags.
- Easily noindex, or nofollow pages, taxonomies or entire archives.
- Improved canonical support, adding canonical to taxonomy archives, single posts and pages and the front page.
- RSS footer / header configuration.
- Permalink clean ups, while still allowing for, for instance, Google Custom Search.
- Breadcrumbs support, with configurable breadcrumbs titles.
- XML Sitemaps with:
- Configurable removal of post types and taxonomies
- Pages or posts that have been noindexed will not show in XML sitemap (but can if you want them too).
- XML News Sitemaps.
- .htaccess and robots.txt editor.
- Ability to verify Google Webmaster Tools, Yahoo Site Explorer, and Bing Webmaster Tools
- Basic import functionality for HeadSpace2 and All in One SEO. (You can also use the SEO Data Transporter to transfer functionality from themes likeThesis, Headway, Genesis etc).
So after seeing all of these features, it is confirmed that this is by far the MOST COMPLETE SEO plugin for WordPress. Joost combined his other plugins like RSS Footer, HeadSpace2, Yoast Breadcrumbs, and others to create this powerhouse plugin. We will be switching WPBeginner from All in One SEO Pack to this plugin in our version 2.0.
Installation of this plugin is the same as how you would install any other WordPRess plugin. First you need to Download WordPress SEO Plugin by Yoast, and then you need to activate it. You should see a new tab added in the admin panel called SEO with Yoast’s logo on it.
Now that you have installed and activated the plugin, let’s take a look at setting this bad boy up.
SEO CIREBON How to Setup WordPress SEO Plugin by Yoast
You should remember, that the settings that we select are the ones that we recommend. Other SEO’s may have their own preferences and discretion, so advanced users should ignore anything that they do not like. If you are a beginner and you want to use Yoast’s WordPress SEO plugin, then please follow along the steps carefully.
Step 1. Data Transfer
Most of you probably have another WordPress plugin like All in One SEO pack, or a theme framework like Genesis, Thesis, or Headway dealing with your SEO data. If you want to successfully use this plugin, you need to make sure that all of your previous data has been transported to this plugin before you deactivate the other one. To accomplish this, we recommend using SEO Data Transporter byStudioPress. For anyone looking to setup this plugin on a new blog, you should this step.
Step 2: General Settings
In step 2, we will explain the General Settings section that you see in the “Dashboard” page of Yoast WordPress SEO plugin.
As you see, that we have checked the Use meta keywords tags. This will allow you to see the Meta Keywords in the post edit panel. The second option there is for Disabling the date in snippet preview for posts, but it does you no harm for leaving it unchecked. The advanced part of WordPress SEO is good for some posts or plugins, so it is good to leave it unchecked, but if you are a total newb, you might as well disable it to avoid screwups. Anything below that should not be checked i.e post / page / attachment area should be left unchecked like the image above.
Step 3: Webmaster Tools
If you know a little bit about SEO, then you have probably heard that each of the popular search engines, Google, Yahoo, and Bing allows the site owners to have some sort of webmaster tools area. This area lets you see inside stats about your site in the specific search engines. In order to verify your site to see those inside data, you have to add a meta tag to your site, or upload a file. Most beginners are afraid to add meta tags, so Joost put this option in to ease the process. Simply add your meta code that you received from the search engines in the respective fields.
Step 4: Sitemap
Sitemaps are essential for your WordPress site. Normally we would recommend you to add a plugin like Google XML Sitemap, but Joost thought ahead and put it this feature in his plugin. By default it is unchecked, so you need to make sure that you check the box to enable it. Once you check the box, a bunch of features will appear like in the image below:
You need to make sure that you allow images in your Sitemap. After sitemap generation, it is good to notify the search engines like Google, Yahoo, Bing etc. So check those. If you do not want to add any post type in your sitemap, then check those to exclude them. But for majority of you guys, you will only see Posts and Pages, and both should be included (thus unchecked). Same with the taxonomies. Once you are done with these settings, click on the Big blue save button at the bottom.
Step 5: Title Settings
Under the SEO tab, you should see the section called Titles. This section has a way for you to set Titles and Title templates for all of your pages on the site. If you have no idea what we mean by title templates, then please follow along and you will see. First we need to make sure that our titles can be rewritten on each of our page. So go inside your theme’s header.php file, and make sure that the title section of your site looks like this:
If you do not want to modify your theme, or you are afraid that you might break something, then simply check the box that says Force rewrite titles.
Next we will work on defining the title for our homepage, and then define title templates for post, page, and attachments. So what exactly is a difference between a title and a title template, you may ask. In instances like your home page, you may want to create a static title, description, and keywords. But for posts, the title will vary from one post to another. So you define a way that the title and other meta information is pulled and organized, that is what we call a title template. Let’s take a look at the image below for the settings:
As you see in the Homepage Area, we are defining our own static title. Keep your titles under 70 characters, and your description under 160 characters. Because search engines are limited to these characters. Now for posts and pages, we are using these weird shortcodes like %%title%% or %%excerpt%% etc. Joost has attached a full guide at the bottom of the Title Settings Page that explains all of these individual tags, so we will not explain them in this post. So if you want to understand what these settings are doing, you should refer to that guide. If you are a complete novice, you probably just want to follow along and leave everything like the image above shows.
Next we will deal with Special Pages section such as Author Archives, Date Archives, Search Pages, and 404 pages.
If you notice in the image above, we are leaving the date archives section blank. That is for two reasons. Joost has already set it so, it shows Month Year Archives – Sitename. Second reason is that, we could not see a way to modify it better than that because the guide on the title page did not have anything for that (Perhaps Joost can clarify if he reads this post).
This concludes our Step 5 for title settings. We should remind you that these title templates can be overridden for specific posts, pages, categories, author, tags, etc which we will cover further down in this post.
Step 6 – Indexation
Next step is Indexation rules. This page is a scary page because if you mess up, you can truly screw yourself over. So handle with care, and follow Joost’s direction. If you notice in the screenshot, we have minimized the tab called Plugin Settings. The reason for that is because it has a check box to remove all the direction and notes. You should do the same because you don’t want to check the box without knowing and then worry (Ofcourse, if you uncheck the box everything comes back).
If you notice on the image above, we are specifically dealing with the sections to set noindex on pages to avoid duplicate content in search engines. There is no reason why an individual search query should be indexed. So it is best to noindex them by checking the box like we have. The login and register pages can and should be set on noindex specially for single authored blogs. The reason why we did not check them in the image above is because some of you might be using the minimeta widget that might break if you check those boxes. Moving onto Author archives settings. If you are a single-authored blog, it is probably best that you set this to noindex because your author archive page will look exactly the same as your normal blog page. Same goes for the date based archives because those too are duplicates of your normal blog page, thus they should not be indexed by search engines. However, we are not saying that you should remove them from your blog. You can still have date based archives available as a good way for your users to find content. Next are category / tag based archives. Now you notice, we have checked the tag based archives to not be indexed and the categories to be indexed. The reason why we did it is because we are using categories as our way main way of sorting out content. Tags are only supplementary and are there for the sake of usability. Thus google does not need to see the same content multiple times. If you are using tags instead of categories as your main way of structure, then you want to do the exact opposite of what we did.
Next we will look at the internal nofollow settings and archive settings. For those who do not know, nofollow is the way to stop diluting your page strength on links that does not deserve it. Let’s take a look at the setting below:
We are checking all the boxes in the internal nofollow settings area. Let’s take a look at why. We are nofollowing login and registration links is because there is no need for your admin page to get any page rank. You should rather pass a higher juice to your other pages such as about page, or your services page. By checking that box, we nofollow few useless links that appeared on all pages that were diluting your page strength. On a lot of WordPress themes, there are links pointing to the comment section. By checking the second box, we nofollow all those links. Often we see sites using the Meta widget in their sidebar that contains your RSS link, login link, WordPress.org link etc. By checking the third box, we nofollow all of those links as well. Most themes give credit to WordPress.org in their footer anyways, so adding a nofollow on one additional link that you have no option to remove is not mean at all. Second thing that you see in the image above is Archive settings. This section is powerful, so make sure you know what you are doing. If you run a single authored blog, there is no use for your author profile as we have specified above in the indexation rules settings (which is why we set those to noindex). Well Joost extend the option for you to set a 301 redirect to all author archive pages to the homepage. This is great if you run a single-authored blog, so you might as well do it. But be aware, if you have a multi-author blog, we advise against doing so. Disabling date based archives is individual discretion as well. If you want to give your user an option to view your blog in a monthly archive fashion, then do not check the box. Note, you are not hurting your blog by unchecking this box because we have already set those date archive pages to noindex in the indexation settings. Lastly, you see we have minimized the Robots Meta Settings. You should do the same if you are a novice because you can seriously mess things up by accidentally checking one of those boxes.
Next, we will take a close look at the Clean Head Section Settings. By default, there is a lot of stuff added in your site’s head section that might not be necessary for everyone. Let’s take a look in the image below to see the settings we recommend:
First as you notice, we have left the RSD links and WLW links unchecked. That is because if you are using remote editors or windows live writer, you need those to be in the header. We are hiding the WordPress Generator because a lot of users do not upgrade. If you upgrade WordPress on a regular basis, there is no reason why you should have this box checked. However, Joost only removes the version number, not the entire tag, so others will still see that your site is powered by WordPress in the head section just without the version number. We are hiding the index relation links and the start relation links because they are useless. You can hide the next and previous links from the head section, but that is individual discretion again just like the shortlinks. Do not Hide RSS Links if your WordPress site is a blog (which in most cases would be).
This concludes our step 6 of the setup. Yes, there is more so hang on tight.
Step 7: Permalinks Settings Explained
Just to be clear, we are talking about the Permalink settings in Yoast SEO tab, not in the setting tabs. This plugin adds on to those that are built-in to WordPress. This section does not allow you to create SEO Friendly URLs in WordPress. It assumes, that you have already done that. So let’s take a look at what type of features this section offers:
WordPress by default adds a category base in each url i.e /category/. By checking the first box, you strip that part from your category URLs. This is something that a lot of people want. But we are leaving it unchecked because we do not want our category urls and page urls to conflict if they are the same name. Furthermore, this is also an individual SEO guy discretion thing. Next feature is to enforce a trailing slash on all category / tag urls. If you are one of the users, who have .html at the end of their posts, then you probably want to select this option. The third step is a cool one because it is something that a lot of bloggers should do. WordPress has this awesome way of attaching images and other media to posts. But all of those attachments get their own URLs which in most cases is unnecessary. Therefore by checking this box, you redirect all your attachment page URL to the original post URL. Most of you only see the last option as Redirect ugly URL’s to clean permalinks. But when you check that, it opens up other settings as well. Other people might link to your short URL, or other ugly URLs like those feedburner links, so it is good to keep them all clean. So by checking this box, you are cleaning all ugly URL pointing to your site by turning them into clean permalinks. The reason why Joost added additional settings is because like every good developer, he was thinking ahead of times. What if you are using Google Analytics to track specific campaigns. That requires adding ?utm variable at the end of the URL. So Joost put an option to prevent cleaning out Google Analytics Campaign Parameters. You can also add other parameters that you do not want to clean. There is an option to prevent cleaning out Google Site Search URL’s, but that is only necessary if you are using Google Site Search on your site.
Step 8: Internal Links Settings
Do not confuse this internal link settings with the new internal link feature that is coming in WordPress 3.1. This entire page is all about adding Breadcrumbs which are great for internal linking because it defines a clean path or trail to the page you are on.
First thing first, you need to Enable Breadcrumbs, so check YES. Next we are setting a separator between breadcrumbs, and we choose to separate it by arrows like ». You can use /, commas, ~, or whatever you like. Anchor Text for Homepage, should be your site name. So please change that field. Prefix for the breadcrumb path, is not necessary. But it is good to let your user know what is this thing that is popping out at them. So we are using the phrase “You are Here:”. Prefix for Archives is “Archives for”, so when someone actually visits the archives page, it shows “Archives for October 2010?. Prefix for Search page works in a similar way because the user will see “You searched for: “the term they searched for”. Breadcrumb for 404 page will show that as a result. If you are using WordPress as a CMS that has a blog section added to it, then you have an option to remove the Blog page part from the breadcrumb. However, we do not see it necessary. Joost gives you an option to select how you want to categorize the posts (by category or tags). This depends on how your site is organized. You have an option to Bold the last page in the breadcrumb. Lastly, this feature does not automatically add itself unless you are using Hybrid, Thesis, or Thematic. For other themes, you will have to add the following code in your loop:
For coders who want advanced usage, check out Joost’s advanced use guideline.
Step 9: RSS Settings
Joost wanted to leave no room for mistake, so he added one of his other plugins RSS Footer functionality to this plugin to give you full SEO advantage. So let’s take a look at what this tab has to offer.
As you see in the image above, we are no indexing the comment feed because in most cases it is pointless. We are also pinging the search engines with the feed on every new post. If you are using FeedBurner, it does that regardless (see ourStep by Step Guide to Setup FeedBurner).
The next section that you see is controlling the content of your RSS Feed. This allows you to add backlinks to yourself in your feed content because most content scrapers are using your feeds to steal your content. This way, you will get backlinks from their site, and google will know that you are the original source. There are options to add your Post link, blog link, and blog description. So get creative. He give you an option to add the text either above the content, or below the content. So it is your pick. This can also be used to add advertisement to your RSS feed, so you get additional impressions from the scraper’s page.
For advanced users: How to Add Custom Content and Completely Manipulate your RSS Feeds.
Step 10: Export Settings
As you can see that we have spent a good amount of time getting these settings just right, so you probably want to export the settings as Backup (just incase if you accidentally mess things up in the future). You can also export settings to use it as an initial guideline for all of your future sites that you are going to use this plugin on.
**Note** There is an Edit tab below Import & Export section, but we will not cover that. Most beginners or even intermediates should not get close to that section.
Step 11: Customizing and Maximizing the Benefit
Just installing and setting up this plugin is not enough. In order for you to really maximize the benefit of this plugin, you need to really customize the settings on per post basis. Now this would not be a chore if you do it everytime you write a post. Let’s take a look at how you can maximize the benefits by customizing.
WordPress SEO for Individual Posts and Pages
On each post, and page editor page you will see this new box called WordPress SEO that has tons of fields like SEO Title, Meta Description etc. You should custom write each title, and meta description rather than letting it auto-generate to maximize the benefit. Sometimes your post title, and your SEO title might not be the same. Everytime, you should write a custom Meta Description because the excerpt generator only picks up the first paragraph which might not be the most important one. There is also an option to customize Breadcrumbs title if you click on the Advanced button. But do not edit anything else in the advanced section, unless you know what you are doing.
WordPress SEO for Archives (Category / Author / Tags)
You can override the Title Templates that we created in Step 5 to maximize the benefits. Simply Edit any Category, Tag, or Author to see the WordPress SEO settings added.
We hope that we covered every aspect of this plugin. If we missed anything, then please let us know in the comments. Joost de Valk is an excellent developer who has created yet another Awesome plugin. This plugin is very powerful, and we predict that it will seriously challenge the famous All in One SEO Pack plugin for the top spot.