WordPress is praised by users and website owners alike for its combination of simplicity and usability, but SEO is an area in which it suffers slightly. If your website uses WordPress, a number of factors can contribute to decreased search engine rankings including duplicate content generation and the inability to customize the meta tags in your posts. Installing an SEO plugin allows you to take control of how search engines index your website and can greatly increase your rankings. These are our favorite WordPress SEO plugins.
All in One SEO Pack (Link)
By default, WordPress creates a number of different archive pages as you add content. In addition to the main archive on the front page, WordPress creates archives for different post categories, tags, authors and date ranges. If your WordPress website has a single author, many taxonomy-based archives will look almost exactly the same to search engines as the main archive. The All in One SEO pack allows you to prevent search engines from indexing these archives and avoid possible duplicate content penalties. In addition, the All in One SEO Pack generates meta tags for your content, maintains a sitemap automatically and is fully compatible with WordPress-based e-commerce websites.
WordPress SEO by Yoast (Link)
Like the above plugin, WordPress SEO by Yoast allows you to prevent indexing of specific archive pages, customize post meta tags and create a sitemap. In addition, it is possible to extend WordPress SEO by Yoast by adding additional plugins for local, news and video SEO. Although these features are compelling on their own, the highlight of WordPress SEO by Yoast might be its post editor. When you create a new post, you can specify the target keyword for which you’d like the post to rank in search engines. When you save the post as a draft, the plugin automatically checks a variety of SEO factors including keyword usage, reading ease and outbound links.
SEO Smart Links (Link)
Interlinking the posts on your website isn’t just great for helping users discover content — it can also contribute to higher search engine rankings. One of the factors contributing to high rankings on Google is PageRank — the “trust” conferred from one website to another via a link. Websites with many inbound links have high PageRank and transfer a bit of it each time they link out to another website. When your website’s best content generates natural links, you can spread the PageRank throughout your website by linking to your other content. SEO Smart Links helps you do this by interlinking your website’s content automatically. When you mention one post in another, SEO Smart Links automatically links the two. This is especially useful if your website has a great deal of content, as you may not remember your old articles well enough to identify every opportunity for interlinking.