Search Engine Optimization or SEO is an integral part of every website nowadays which can increase the online presence and visibility of a business. Although WordPress has its flaws, because of over 40,000 plugins, it’s the most used content management system.
These additions can help you boost rankings on search engine results pages, find the right keywords, and make sure your content is readable. They can also do much more, it’s only the question of deciding on the right ones. With that in mind, here is how to choose the best SEO plugins for WordPress to rank above others.
Think of security
Plugins can be susceptible to hacker attacks giving you security issues that can ruin months, even years, of work. According to statistics, 22% of websites get hacked because of the badly executed code that allows for this harmful access. To prevent this from happening, don’t install a plugin before you check how frequently it’s updated.
All plugins should operate on the newest WordPress versions since that gives you some reassurance that security measures are up-to-date. Hackers find flaws in the old versions and use them to gain access to your website management and even the computer. Additionally, just in case, make sure to back up your website regularly so you can have it up and running as soon as the issue is taken care of.
Know what you are looking for
You shouldn’t install plugins unless you need them since that can be costly and time-consuming. Instead, sit down and figure out what you need plugins to do for you and your website. For example, if you are an SEO beginner, All in One SEO (AIOSEO) may be the right plugin for you with its user-friendly features and millions of installations. On the other hand, SEMRush is considered the best SEO plugin used by professionals, businesses, and bloggers.
To find out how you rank in the search engine results, you can use Google Search Console, a free plugin great for monitoring and fixing crawl errors. Other popular SEO plugins, are Yoast SEO, Ahrefs, Rank Math, and Schema Pro, but which one you will use depends on what you are expecting to achieve with your website, besides high rankings.
Decide between free and premium versions
Whether to choose a free or premium version is one of the most common questions when deciding on WordPress SEO plugins. Free plugins are a good way to save money, but they may not have everything you need within their limited offer. They also may lack regular updates, and customer service, and don’t include the latest security fixes.
Premium versions, however, come with more features, and constant updates, and are compatible with the latest version of WordPress. They are also not as expensive as many believe and can make a difference if you want to customize your website more seriously.
Consider the reputation of the plugin developer
Ask SEO Services Sydney and other digital marketing experts about the importance of using proven tools, and they will all say that reputation is everything. It can guarantee secure coding, the use of the latest trends, and quick resolution of problems. For this reason, deciding on the plugin developer is equally significant as following the best practices to place your website high in Google rankings.
Check out the reviews for plugins, as well as how many times and often they were downloaded. See whether the developer communicates with customers regarding those reviews, especially negative ones, if any. That will tell you a lot about their dedication and efforts to provide the best possible support and regular upgrades.
Examine the plugin changelog
A changelog includes all the changes and upgrades of a certain plugin that the developer performed over time. This can say a lot about a plugin and whether you should install it at all. For instance, you will see how often a developer updates the plugin and what they focus on the most.
If you are feeling up to some detective work, you can read negative reviews to see what users complained about the most. Then, check the changelog to see how developers incorporated those complaints and if they did it at all. A plugin that’s constantly improved based on users’ needs to make it more stable, secure, and better, is the best choice even if you have to pay a little money for it.
Get the customer support you need
We mentioned that premium plugins come with customer support that is quick to answer any question and resolve issues. This is because you are talking to a support agent one-on-one and they are dedicated only to your communication. A developer’s team can access your website remotely and find the problem.
On the other hand, free versions usually only have a support forum where you may wait a while for an answer, regardless of how urgent you need it. Think about how you would like to handle potential issues and the importance of their swift resolution for your SEO. If late replies are going to cost you good Google rankings, then consider paying for immediate access to customer support.
Check the technical aspects
Website loading time can contribute to building a successful SEO strategy. But, some plugins can slow down the loading time by adding more files than necessary. To check if this happened, use GTMetrix.com to monitor the state of your website before and after you added a plugin.
The best SEO plugins for WordPress are the ones that work for you by allowing you to achieve your objectives without ruining your Google rank. If in doubt about which one to use, install it and try it, read online reviews, and check their changelog to discover more about updates and security patches. While this may sound like lots of work, once you find the right plugin, it can reinvent your website’s SEO.