SEO Plugins for Wordpress

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SEO Plugins and Site Optimizations Tools to Bolster Wordpress SEO

Wordpress is the most popular content management system used to manage millions of websites worldwide. The Wordpress CMS has been popular for several reasons; the leading reason being its flexibility. You can use the CMS for building just around any type of website. More than 43% of all the websites online use wordpress, which is built on php and mysql.

Wordpress is also the preferred CMS for millions of users because of its SEO features and it surpasses most leading content management systems in this area. It offers a wide range of themes and plugins to make managing websites easier and is more beginner friendly compared to the other content management systems. There are many lightweight, fast and responsive themes in the Wordpress repository, which are good in terms of performance and SEO.

SEO or search engine optimization is a critical factor when it comes to blogging. Apart from targeting the right keywords, there are several more factors to be managed perfectly to rank your content higher. While content quality is an important ranking factor, certain areas in SEO cannot be managed without the use of a good SEO plugin in Wordpress.

For example, schema, meta descriptions, SEO analysis, and several more similar factors require the use of a SEO plugin in wordpress. In this post, we will highlight four such SEO plugins that can be highly helpful for you if you are starting a wordpress blog. You can select one that you want to use based on your needs.

The leading SEO plugins provide matching performance and depending on your priorities you can use the one you like since all have a slightly different yet a very effective approach to SEO.

Apart from the SEO plugins, we will also highlight some other plugins, which can help you take your SEO to the next level by helping you manage your site in areas that affect SEO and search rankings.

Yoast SEO Plugin:

Yoast SEO

Touted as the most used SEO plugin, Yoast has more than five million active installations and 4.8 ratings out of more than 27,000 votes. Yoast is a feature rich SEO plugin that will help you manage meta robots tags, meta descriptions, schema and other SEO related areas like sitemaps and also image seo and crawl optimization.

  • Yoast comes in both free and pro versions. The pro version provides some additional features that include a redirection manager and internal linking. Its pro version also allows you to target multiple keywords in the same post and offers internal linking suggestions as well as an advanced SEO analysis which helps you create perfect content that will rank automatically.

  • Yoast is a popular plugin and its free version includes several features, though some crucial features require buying the pro version. Otherwise, it is good for SEO and millions of sites use it.

  • Allows to manage meta title and descriptions from the post itself.

  • Provides a readability analysis and content score (advanced SEO analysis of content and internal linking suggestions available with pro version)

  • Image attachments can be redirected to the image itself.

  • Provides crawl optimization features

  • Does not include redirection in the free version

  • The features not required can be turned off easily from the dashboard.

  • Allows to manage feeds and feed links (mark no index or disable).

  • Includes tools to edit .htaccess file and the robots.txt file.

  • No features for paginated pages.

  • Includes tools to connect with google search console and Bing.

  • Pro version includes support for more than one focus keywords

Rank Math SEO Plugin :

Rank Math features

Rank Math is perhaps the most feature rich of all the SEO plugins in the wordpress plugin repository. From meta descriptions, to meta robots tags and sitemaps, it includes just around every feature that a SEO plugin must have in its free version.

There is also a pro version available. However, you will find that its free version includes the highest number of features of all the SEO plugins including internal linking analysis, free instant indexation feature (this feature is only available with pro versions of Yoast and AIOSEO), free redirection manager and similar more additional features that can be helpful to optimize your website for SEO.

Rank Math is called the Swiss army knife of Wordpress seo. It is because apart from being feature rich and including a lot of pro features in its free version, it is suited for almost all kinds of websites made using Wordpress. Whether it is Woocommerce, or plain blog or one page business website, Rank Math is the plugin of choice for all types of users.

  • An advanced SEO plugin with the highest number of functionalities included in the free version of all.

  • Excellent reputation and user ratings.

  • Offers analytics connection to use google analytics data for optimizing SEO.

  • Offers options to manage pagination SEO

  • Images can be redirected to attachment or parent post

  • Free version includes redirection manager

  • Instant indexing feature included in the free version.

  • No feed settings yet.

  • Includes tools for editing .htaccess file and robots.txt

  • Includes tools to connect with Google console and bing

  • Includes support for html sitemap

  • Includes support to noindex external links or exclude external domains from noindex (exclusive Rank Math feature)


All In One SEO

Another highly versatile SEO plugin that is very popular among wordpress users and is a leading competitor of Yoast is AIOSEO or All in One SEO.

All in One SEO is used across more than 3 million wordpress sites and is admired for its features and performance.

AIOSEO offers both a free and premium version and like Yoast, reserves some of the features like redirect manager and instant indexing for the pro version. However, for a new blog, its free features are more than sufficient. You can analyze your content using AIOSEO to improve it.

Like Rank Math AIOSEO also offers features to deal with paginated pages.

AIOSEO also allows users to set meta robots tags and meta descriptions as well as analyze the content. You can set the paginated pages to no index and no follow using AIOSEO. It includes nearly all the features included in Yoast SEO. However, each of these SEO plugins takes a slightly different approach to managing wordpress SEO.

  • Includes all the basic SEO features for managing wordpress seo like meta robots tags, meta descriptions, sitemaps.

  • Improved settings for dealing with archives and paginated pages as well as internal search.

  • Some of the critical features reserved for the pro version like instant indexing and redirection.

  • Settings to deal with index bloat and crawl optimization.

  • Images can be redirected to attachment or post parent.

  • Includes tools to connect with Google search console and bing.

  • Includes html sitemap

The SEO Framework

An SEO plugin that is most popular among developers because of being feature rich despite being ultra lightweight.

The plugin includes all the essential features but is super lightweight. If you want a SEO plugin that has minimal to no effect on wordpress site speed, you can go for the SEO framework with eyes closed.

It is the simplest SEO plugin in the wordpress repository you would find but yet a strong performer and a well coded plugin that will not bloat your database. The SEO Framework makes it simpler to set the meta robots tags, and meta descriptions, managing schema, generating sitemap and setting canonical urls, it also includes features to deal with paginated pages, internal search pages and archives.

The SEO framework has more than 100,000 active installations and is rated 4.9 out of five stars. Another important benefit of using this plugin is that it comes mostly pre configured or you can just go with the default settings. It also includes the feature to make feed links no index. However, since it is an ultra lightweight plugin it omits some features such as redirection, 404 monitor, focus keyword etc. Additionally, you can redirect images to parent urls with a free extension. It also offers some extra premium features that include Local SEO, focus keywords and stats monitor.

  • Simple and fast SEO plugin

  • All basic features necessary for managing SEO included

  • Most features are preconfigured

  • Extra features included as premium features

  • Includes support for sitemap

  • Is very easy to set up even for beginners

  • Some features like redirection and 404 monitor not available

  • Includes support to make internal search pages and paginated pages no index.


Another SEO Plugin that is feature rich, lightweight, fast, well coded and that touts itself as white label; SEOPress free version is loaded with all the essential SEO features plus so much including image SEO optimization, wordpress code optimization and more features liek google analytics and GDPR. Some of these features are exclusive to SEOPress and not found in the other SEO plugins particularly the support for analytics and GDPR in a SEO plugin. It means you need two less plugins on your website.

SEOPress allows you to manage your metadata, schema, meta descriptions, sitemaps and some other features which are included mostly with premium plugins which can help you optimize wordpress code by getting rid of unnecessary scripts.

Here is a list of the main features included with SEOPress that can help you take Wordpress SEO to the next level:

  • Support for title and meta robots tags

  • Support for XML and HTML sitemaps

  • Free instant indexing feature based on Google’s instant indexing APi

  • Remove urls from google index directly from wordpress dashboard

  • Support for Google analytics and GDPR.

  • Support for inserting tracker code in header, body and footer.

  • detailed image seo settings including automatic alt text and titles.

  • Support to remove unnecessary wordpress scripts like pingback headers, generator meta tag etc for crawl optimization.

  • Support for managing comment seo

  • Support for removing website field from comments and reduce spam

  • Tools included to import and export seo settings from other SEO plugins and to reset the plugin tables in the database.

From the list above, you can judge that the SEOpress plugin is loaded with features and many of these are premium features. You can automate image SEO optimization using SEOpress and do many more things like google analytics, GDPR and search console verification. The SEO plugin also includes several advanced tools and some of its features are included in no other SEO plugin. The plugin has also been gaining faster in popularity.

So, this was our list of the best SEO plugins available in the wordpress repository. While Yoast is widely used for SEO across Wordpress websites, Rank Math is a plugin that includes a lot of premium features in its free version and is faster gaining in terms of popularity. AIOSEO is also a complete SEO solution in itself and the preferred SEO plugin of millions of users. If you want a plugin that includes all the features in one, you must go for Rank Math, which is available in both free and pro versions. With the pro version, you also get exceptional support to deal with SEO related issues on your website.

However, you can confidently use any of the above discussed plugins for SEO, based on your needs since they are all great in terms of performance. If speed is your most important concern, you can go for the SEO Framework and if you want a site that is super optimized for crawling, select AIOSEO or Yoast. However, these features are also included in Rank Math, which takes a slightly different approach than any other SEO plugin.

When we are talking of Wordpress SEO, focusing only on the SEO will not suffice since site speed and user experience also matter for rankings which can be optimized through the use of other tools and plugins.

Below we will list some more tools and plugins which can be used to make your site perform better and improve site rankings. This list includes both free and premium tools and plugins.

Other plugins and tools to manage Wordpress SEO and site performance

  • Google Search Console

Webmasters cannot do without the Gogle Search console since it is an all in one tool to understand site indexation status, backlink profile, keyword performance, and similar more features including core vitals report. You will need to submit your site to search console for getting these reports. However, please visit the console regularly to know indexation status of new and old urls as well as backlinks and for analyzing keyword performance.

Please also submit a sitemap to the google search console. using the search console is critical to growing traffic and understanding traffic patterns as well as keyword gap and other SEO related issues.

  • W3TC

W3TC or W3 Total Cache helps you improve your SEO performance and core web vital reports. It is a free plugin that also offers a pro version. However most of the critical features are inlcuded in the free version of this caching plugin. Since speed is now critical to ranking, managing wordpress speed requires the use of a good aching plugin. W3Tc offers features for page caching, browser caching, object caching and database caching. You can use it to manage redis cache as well as memcached on your website, which will speed up wordpress loading times. if you have Varnish cache installed on your server, the plugin also includes features to flush Varnish cache.

W3TC is a complete caching plugin in itself that will improve site performance and thus improve your SEO and rankings. Another caching plugin that can help improve your site speed is WP Rocket, whcih is a premium caching plugin. However, W3TC has most features included in its free version.

  • WP Rocket

WP Rocket is a premium caching plugin and excellent or rather unparalleled in terms of performance. It includes everal features to speed up your website including minification, JS and CSS optimization as well as CDN and database management. WP Rocket can significantly speed up your wordpress site ersulting in better site performance and improved SEO. The plugin is very easy to set up and also offers featurs for Cloudflare integration.

  • Perfmatters

Perfmatters is a really lightweight plugin that can signifcantly boost load times and site performance. It cna alos help you improve your blog’sSEO performance by helping you get rid of all the unnecessary features and scripts in Wordpress. Some of its features also targeted at making Wordpress securer like chaing the wordpress admin url. Despite being a lightweight plugin, it is loaded with features including disabling xmlrpc, disabling rss feeds and removing rss feed links, removing rsd link, short link and similar more unnecessary features including emojis, embeds, dashicons etc. While this help load the site faster, it also makes wordpress secure and bolsters SEO. Perfmatters is a premium plugin that also includes a script manager to avoid loading specific scripts on all pages or specific pages . the other features included in this plugin include CDN, google analytics, CSS and JS optimization as well as preloading and preconnect. These features will help you provide your users a superior experience and thus improve SEO.

Perfmatters features

  • Redirection

The redirection plugin is useful when it comes to setting redirects on your website. this plugin will help you monitor 404 errors which can hurt traffic and SEO and set appropriate redirects so that the users can redirected to the right pages instead of seeing a 404. Suppose, you ahev changed url structure or removed any posts or pages, then instead of showing your visitors a 404 page, you can direct them to the necessary pages. This plugin will aslo help you retain backlinks if hthe url to posts has changed or when you want to redirect a category or url to another.

  • Ahrefs

Ahrefs is also a must-have when it comes to Wordpress SEO. It is a leading name in the world of Search engine optimization. You can start with a free ahrefs account to onitor website SEO and fix issues. It will aslo help you with fixing broken links on your website, 404 errors, improving your backlinks profile, content quality and several other SEO related issues liek meta robots tags. Ahrefs is equipped with multiple such tools to resolve your SEO related problems.

  • Google Analytics

For every blogger, understanding his audience is a critical part of his content strategy and SEo strategy. Google analytics is a great option when it comes understanding user needs and preferences as well as other factors like bounce rate, keyword popularity and page loading speed. It will also help you know whichpages are loading the slowest on your website and which pages are gaining in terms of rankings and clicks. You will just need ot install the GA4 tag on your website to get detailed reports about user geography, organic traffic and other sources of traffic as well as user devices and the content which is most popular among users.

A few last words:

This was a brief list of the most useful plugins for managing website performance and search engine optimization. You can select the ones you need. However, Google Analytics and Google Search Console data are indispensable to understanding website performance in SEO and other areas. When it comes to managing website performance, the role fo both SEO pplugins and caching plugins cannot be ignored. While the SEO plugins will help you optimize your content and other SEO related features, the caching plugins will help you with speed and core vitals score, which are also critically related to SEO. Premium plugins like Perfmatters can help your further optimize your your website for security, speed and SEO. Optimize your blog/website for both SEO and Speed and target a superior user experience since that is also critical to ranking higher than your competitors.

Suggested Reading

  1. AIOSEO Plugin for Wordpress SEO

  2. Optimize Your Wordpress Blog for Search Engines with Rank Math

  3. SEOpress plugin - How to Use with Wordpress for Best Results

  4. A Wordpress Guide for Beginners