WordPress SEO Plugin by Yoast: Setup Guide

SEO Strategies | Posted on Aug 25, 2012 | Last updated on September 10, 2021

article-by-Doug-WilliamsI had been a strong proponent of the All-in-one-SEO-Pack plugin, but I have been using the Yoast WordPress SEO plugin over the past week as I set-up a new site and I am very impressed with it. It takes a little more to set-up, but definitely is more powerful. Here is a guide to setting it up and your blog for maximum SEO using this plugin. Most of the default settings work as installed, the following are the steps you should take in setting up your blog.

This plugin not only replaces the All-in-one-SEO-Pack plugin, but also the XML sitemaps plugin. It also allows you to edit and easily make changes to your .htaccess file from within WordPress and much more.

When you first access your plugin in your WordPress blog (Settings>>SEO) you will be prompted to take a tour of this plugin. I recommend you do this to get oriented to what its capabilities are. Yoast has an excellent plugin tutorial on their site. It is much more in depth than this blog posting and a good read if you have specific questions.

  • URL Permalink Structure: (Settings>>Permalinks). I like to use URLs that are set-up as /category/postname. Set to a custom structure: /%category%/%postname%/


  • WWW vs. Non-www: Set your site to appear as www or non-www This is done under the WordPress General Settings (Settings>>General). You should also go into Google Webmaster tools set your preferred URL. (Configuration>>Settings).


XML Sitemaps: Enable XML sitemaps to automatically generate XML sitemaps.


 Titles & Metas: Most of the tabs are filled with preset templates that you can override. I made changes to the General and Other tabs. These are the settings for the general tab.


Duplicate Content: One problem that occurs with WordPress right out of the box is that each posting has upwards of 5 copies of it that is available for indexing by the search engines. You fix that with the “Other” tab on Titles & Metas. There is one type of archive that is noindex,follow by default as well in the WordPress SEO plugin: the search result pages. WordPress SEO automatically nofollows all your login and registration links,. If your blog is a one author blog, or you don’t think you need author archives, use WordPress SEO to disable the author archives.


That’s it. Many of the SEO functions happen by activating the plugin. There is a lot to this plugin and I would appreciate feedback from other users.

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Phillip Salinas

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  1. Angela Neal said:
    August 28, 2012 at 9:58 am

    Great intro Doug. Yoast became my strong fav plugin last month thanks to it’s intuitive interface, especially when developing SEO solutions for client sites… I love the “traffic light” system of letting you know how much you need to tweak a post to optimize it.

  2. Doug Williams said:
    August 28, 2012 at 1:12 pm

    Thank you Angela,
    I too really like how the system guides you to make sure your posting is optimized. I am going to change this blog over to it in the next few weeks.

  3. August 29, 2012 at 2:26 am

    Really don`t know about this Yoast WordPress SEO plugin before but after reading i came to know about this plugin now i can able to set the plugin for the seo blog, thanks for sharing.

  4. srikanth said:
    November 2, 2012 at 12:03 am

    sir, how to apply yoast worspress seo plugins for blogger blog (—-.blogspot.com)?

  5. eHackPrograms said:
    February 15, 2013 at 11:02 pm

    Thanks for posting, I configured the plugin just like you described,

  6. Chanel said:
    July 26, 2014 at 10:10 am

    I see a lot of interesting content on your blog.
    You have to spend a lot of time writing, i know how to save you a lot of work,
    there is a tool that creates unique, SEO friendly articles
    in couple of minutes, just search in google – k2 unlimited content

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