What Is Yoast SEO Plugin For WordPress – Is It Worth The Money?
SEO, or search engine optimization, is important for any website.
It can make the difference between being visible to the world, or not being seen at all.
That being said, what is Yoast SEO plugin for WordPress, and how it can help you with SEO?
This search engine optimization plugin for WordPress users is said to be the most downloaded SEO plugin, at over 135 million users. They have a ranking system in which users rate the plugin, and it comes in at 4.9 out of 5 stars.
However, I’m a see-it-to-believe-it girl, so let’s not get ahead of ourselves 🙂
In this review, we will go through some of the helpful, and some of the (in my opinion) unneccesary features that Yoast offers, and give reasons as to why you may want to use it to optimize your website.
Is it worth the money? Will it really help your website and content to rank higher than the competition’s?
Let’s find out!
Yoast SEO Plugin Review
Product Name: Yoast SEO Plugin
Website URL: https://yoast.com
Training: (4 / 5) (if you’d like to pay for training)
Price: (3 / 5)
Tools: (3 / 5)
Support: (3 / 5) (if using premium)
Usability: (3 / 5)
Do You Even Need An SEO Plugin?
Well, it’s really up to you, as far as what measures you would like to take to ensure that you will get ranked highly in search engines.
If you are a WordPress user, you might know that WordPress is already pretty well set-up for SEO. At a somewhat basic level, but it still is.
Before we get started in explaining the key features of Yoast, keep in mind that some features are already available on WP and within other features for free. You just have to know how to access them. ?
I’m the type that likes to save her money for what is very effective and necessary for rankings, I don’t know about you?.
Features such as canonical URL, keyword ranking probability and quality of keywords, Sitemaps and Google Webmasters, previewing your title and tagline, training for SEO and more, are accessible through other avenues…for free.
There can still be a need for a plugin, even a paid plugin for SEO, so lets look at the features.
What’s The Training Like?
Yoast offers a series of online training courses meant for beginners all the way up to users who are considered top authorities in their niches.
The training offers information on how to outrank the competition and become the best search result in search engines.
I’d like to add that they cannot actually GUARANTEE that you will be the best ranked search result, so there’s that.
If you are in blogging, online marketing, are a developer, or own a business, you will probably be able to find something in the training courses to benefit you.
On the flip side. The prices. Some of them are quite manageable, ranging from free all the way up to $500 a year.
Here is a generalized list of the three course categories:
The Free Course includes videos on topics like “What is SEO”, and “What Google Does.” Again, these types of things are available for free elsewhere, and more material is covered.
If you’re a beginner with little knowledge of SEO, you’d have better luck looking someplace else for training.
The beginners videos can be completed in under two hours, but if you really take the time needed and work through your website while in the training, it could take up to 12-16 hours to complete the videos.
You can set your own pace, really.
The advanced courses are more extensive and are for those that fully understand the basics of SEO.
There are basically two ways to go about using the Yoast SEO Plugin.
1. Installing the Free Version
2. Paying $89/year for the Premium Version. This includes coverage of one website.
$89 a year isn’t a large amount in the overall picture, but if you are just beginning and trying to stretch your budget as far as it will go, the free option does include several great features.
Here is a comparison of the Free vs. Premium features:
Are There Tools That I Can Use?
One of the coolest thing about Yoast, in my opinion, is their blog.
They have very informative blog posts pertaining to the plugin, and also to your website, content, and search engine optimization in general.
Here is one of their blog posts that I find helpful:
You can access these posts for free at yoast.com.
The other two tools that I find convenient are:
1. The Content Insight Feature
This feature is only available in the Premium version.
It looks over your content and find the 5 most commonly used words or phrases.
Then, it checks to be sure that these words or phrases are in line with your keyword for the content.
I know that sometimes I get a little bit of shiny object syndrome…and I look back and am TOTALLY off subject.
I have to go back through and re-do some of my content so that it matches up with the actual keyword(s), and has a chance of being ranked.
It’s easy to try to cover more material than necessary or start writing about a secondary subject, and with this feature, you will be able to easily assess if you have gone off target.
2. Technicalities Taken Care Of
This feature IS included in the Free version.
In a nutshell, you don’t have to manually submit site maps to Google and Bing, and you are able to check out your Google Webmasters page from the dashboard of WP, without having to add a new tab. You also don’t need to install an extra XML Sitemaps Plugin.
Everything is right there. Very convenient.
You don’t need the Yoast Plugin to submit site maps, or to look at your Webmasters account. It just makes the process much more convenient not having it do it manually.
To be honest, all of the other tools aren’t really completely necessary to run and operate a successful website.
They may make things a bit more convenient, but i often find that if I stick to the basics of my training…all of the extra bells and whistles are just a hassle.
In the Free version on the plugin, you have access to over 330 FAQ articles that should cover just about everything, and there are also support forums in which you can find answers.
Is The Support Worth Upgrading To Premium?
The short answer is no.
With Premium, you do have a year of free access to 24/7 support.
However, it has been a point among users that they are usually directed back to one of the FAQ articles when asking for help from the support team.
This may not be the case every time, but again…I don’t like to pay for things that aren’t necessary.
Ease Of Use?
If you are not going to pay for training courses with Yoast, you can install the plugin and still not be exactly sure what you are doing or what to do with what you’ve got.
You need proper training to be able to fully maximize the plugin (free or premium).
After you have figured it out, it will be a tool that is easy to use and overall beneficial. But getting there is where the work lies.
You’ll need to spend some time doing research on SEO and what makes a website successful with search engines if you are just starting up and want to utilize the plugin.
As for those who are further along in their endeavors, this is a good plugin to make use of if you are struggling with getting with getting your content ranked, and even if you aren’t.
It can take some of the work out of trying to decide if your content is readable and gets the point across using the keywords that you intended to use.
What’s The Overall Say?
Well, if you are going to use Yoast SEO Plugin, I would definitely say that you should begin with the free version.
i don’t see any need for some of the features offered in the Premium, mainly because there are places that you can find them for free. And secondly because some of them just plain won’t make a difference in your rankings.
Again, $89 a year isn’t much, but it can be when you are starting out and are in desperate need of training and tools to use that will increase your visibility out there.
In conclusion – No, I don’t think the Premium version of Yoast is worth the money.
But the free version could be beneficial in convenience and trying to find similar keywords, or trying to decide if readability is up to par.
I hope that this article helped you to make a decision on whether to choose Yoast as your SEO Plugin!
Do you use Yoast? Has it helped your business? What is your opinion? Leave it in the comments below!
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