Truth be told, any given website needs no more than one search engine optimization (SEO) plugin. But in 2017, there are now quite a few options to choose from so it may be difficult. For most newcomers out there, it is important to not just have a powerful SEO plugin that will help them with their search engine rankings, but it also has to be user friendly and easy to manage. Here we look the 3 best SEO plugins for your WordPress website.
1. Yoast SEO
Yoast SEO is not only powerful, but also very user friendly. Currently, it is the most downloaded SEO plugin available and for good reason. Yoast SEO allows you to add an SEO title, meta description, and meta keywords to each post and page of your site. For each page, it will do an analysis of your website and offer a ‘traffic light’ suggestion system so you can fully optimize each page. And for those that truly want to make the most of what Yoast SEO has to offer, then there is an Advanced menu available too. For those that want to go Pro or purchase add on materials, then you will have access to a ton of other features such as local SEO, video SEO, etc. Despite being so user friendly and overall powerful, there have been some reported issues. Firstly, it is extremely bulky and can take up a lot of room on your dashboard. In fact, it’s suggested to be so bulky that some developers recommend downloading this program to strip Yoast SEO of many of it’s excess additions. Further, the ‘traffic light’ suggestions don’t get it right all the time (e.g. saying you’re using a passive voice when you’re not actually using a passive voice). However, with all that said, as a beginner SEO plugin, Yoast SEO will work just fine.
2. All in One SEO Pack
All in One SEO Pack is the second most downloaded SEO plugin and that popularity is on the rise. This plugin is praised for being much less bulky and interruptive to your WordPress dashboard than Yoast SEO. It still packs a ton of features too such as XML Site Map support, Google Analytics integration, support for custom posts, free WooCommerce integration, and more. These feature are also not set up by default, meaning you will be able to activate the features you want for your website. By upgrading, you will get things like advance support, SEO options for taxonomies, and a video SEO module. And best of all, All in One SEO is still user friendly. Not as user friendly as Yoast SEO, however it is still great for beginners. Overall, its perfect for those that want an easy to use and powerful SEO plugin without being as bulky and interruptive as the Yoast SEO plugin.
3. The SEO Framework
The SEO Framework is not as popular as either Yoast SEO or All in One SEO Pack, however it is slowly growing in popularity thanks to its stellar reviews and recommendations. Once downloaded onto your dashboard, you will have a stripped down and relatively easy to use list of options that will enhance SEO performance. They include configuring your meta titles and descriptions, social meta information, basic schema information, sitemap functionality, and more. Once that is complete, you will only need to do some fairly basic meta information on a per-post basis and that’s about it. Similar to Yoast SEO, there is a ‘traffic light’ system when you view your pages or posts on the dashboard, but they’re much simpler and less coercive (i.e. only there as recommendations and little else). Additionally, the SEO Framework will give you free support for WooCommerce, bbPress, and other custom posts. Overall, the SEO Framework plugin seems to take the best out of both Yoast SEO and All in One SEO Pack and gives you a great intuitive plugin. With that said, one of the negatives is that it may not be as user friendly and beginners may feel out of their depth. However, this is definitely the plugin to use if you’re familiar with the basic principles SEO and you are looking for an alternative.
In conclusion, when looking for the best SEO plugin, it’s all about what will work best for you. If you are a beginner who needs a bit of help with increasing your website’s search engine positioning, then Yoast SEO will be fine. If you want a stripped down, less bulky version of Yoast SEO or have a WooCommerce site, then we recommend All in One SEO Pack. If you’re familiar with basic SEO principles and you’re looking for a neat alternative, then why not give the SEO Framework a try! Regardless, you cannot go too wrong with any of these great plugins.