Top 20 Best WordPress SEO Plugins to Skyrocket Your Website Rankings In 2018
If you are searching for the best SEO plugins for WordPress sites, your search ends here. I have been using many top class SEO plugins on my WordPress sites to increase my search engine rankings. In this detailed guide, I’m going to share you the top plugins for improving your search engine traffic.
Search engine optimization is the ONLY way to boost your organic traffic results and also your ranking factors. Without SEO, you can’t build a profitable online business in 2018 and beyond.
But most bloggers find it very difficult to get good results from the search engines mainly because they are not at all aware of how to optimize their posts and pages. Luckily, if you are a WordPress user, there are tons of great SEO plugins out there, majority of them are free and I’m going to share all of them in this detailed SEO guide.
Before going into the details, I want to discuss few essential things with you.
Do SEO plugins help you improve your rankings?
Yes, definitely few SEO plugins for WordPress will help you get better search rankings for your web pages and posts. Moreover you don’t have to be a SEO master to get more traffic from search engines. All you need to know is how to use the SEO plugins the right way. By using the right combination of SEO plugins and tools, you will be amazed with the search engine traffic that you get.
Should you use FREE or Premium SEO plugins?
It depends on your website needs. If you are trying to get millions of page views each month, you should definitely be using premium SEO plugins to get more search traffic. But if you are new to SEO and don’t want to give much priority to search traffic, then free SEO plugins can work. Mind that, there are lots of free SEO plugins are there that are worth paying for.
Table of Contents
- Top 20 Best SEO plugins for WordPress in 2018 and beyond
- 1. WordPress SEO by Yoast
- 2. W3 Total Cache
- 3. XML Sitemaps
- 4. All in one SEO pack
- 5. SEO Optimized Images
- 6. Simple URL’s
- 7. SEO Squirrly
- 8. Broken link checker
- 9. All In One Schema Rich Snippets
- 10. SEO ultimate plugin
- 11. Author hReview
- 12. The SEO framework
- 13. Google analytics by MonsterInsights
- 14. WPtouch
- 15. WP SEOPress
- 16. Internal Links Generator
- 17. Smush Image Compression
- 18. Redirection
- 19. LiteSpeed Cache
- 20. EWWW Image Optimizer
Top 20 Best SEO plugins for WordPress in 2018 and beyond
Without much ado, let’s jump discuss about the top SEO plugins for WordPress blogs to use in 2018.
1. WordPress SEO by Yoast
The reason I put WordPress SEO plugin in the top list is not only because it’s free, but it is used by millions of bloggers to grow their search engine traffic. This plugin was developed by Joost de Valk who is a great plugin developer whose services are being even used by top blogs like Mashable.
This plugin is downloaded over by 10 million of bloggers and webmasters, it says it all about the importance of using this plugin to boost search engine traffic.
This plugin gives you a snippet preview on how your content, headline etc. gets viewed in the search results so that you can optimize your headlines and meta description accordingly.
Premium WordPress SEO By Yoast
I love Yoast SEO plugin so much that I even recently purchased their premium version to see better results. The premium Yoast plugin offers even more exceptional features to instantly boost your SEO and rankings. Here are the features that you get with Yoast premium version:
- You can use up to 5 keywords for each page.
- You can get Google, Facebook and Twitter previews.
- You can set a primary category for your post, and determine the taxonomy for every single page on your website.
- You can avoid confusing Google with duplicate content, by setting canonical URLs.
- You’ll get automatic suggestions for links to other pages on your website, as you write.
- You can easily redirect old URLs to new ones. So you don’t lose visitors because they get stuck on a 404 Not Found page.
You can also read my comparison of Yoast premium vs free to know more about the two versions of this plugin.
2. W3 Total Cache
One of the reasons most websites get abandoned is because of their loading times. If your site loads very slow, your visitors won’t be interested in reading the contents of your sites, they will immediately leave your site and reach out other blogs.
Website loading time is one of the key factors in getting more search engine traffic. Google gives less priority to the websites that load slow. So if you are focusing on improving your organic traffic, you must focus on making your loading time of your website faster.
Here’s where W3 total cache plugin comes into play. It nullifies all the caches on your site and gives you minimal loading time for the better user experience. This plugin is used by almost every blog in the WordPress community.
This plugin is recommended by top web hosts like Page.ly, Synthesis, Dream Host, Media Temple, Go Daddy, Hostgator and countless more. This plugin increases your website server performance and reduces the download times by providing transparent content delivery network (CDN) integration.
Recommended Reading: Know why W3 Total Cache is Better Than WP Super Cache
3. XML Sitemaps
A website sitemap is a way to tell Google about pages on your site that might not otherwise discover. In simple words, without a sitemap, Google crawler won’t crawl your web pages. It’s very important to use sitemaps on your site as soon as you get started with WordPress.
This plugin will automatically generate XML Sitemaps for your site and notify all the search engines like Google, Yahoo, Bing etc. when they are updated. A must have plugin for all the WordPress users to create no-hassle sitemaps to crawl their sites.
4. All in one SEO pack
In my opinion, All in one SEO pack gives you easy access to improving your organic traffic even if you are a newbie to search engine optimization.
This plugin automatically optimizes your WordPress blogs and websites for search engines so you don’t have to do anything extra work to optimize your posts. This plugin will automatically generates meta tags, and optimizes your titles to give you better search engine traffic and rankings.
If you are a beginner, just install this plugin, sit back and relax. You just have to create content, this plugin takes care of everything.
5. SEO Optimized Images
Do you want to automatically optimize your images including alt and title tags?
If yes, this plugin is a treat for you. It will dynamically insert search engine friendly alt attributes and title attributes to your images so you can attract more visitors from Google image search for various keywords that you want to rank for.
Simply install this plugin, provide the primary keywords that you want to rank for and the plugin will do the rest by automatically optimizing your images.
The great thing about using this plugin is that even if you deactivate the plugin, everything will be back to as it was because it won’t make any changes to the database, so it’s safe to use.
6. Simple URL’s
This plugin is a great way to manage links on your websites as it allows you create, manage, and track outbound links from your site by using custom post types and 301 redirects.
This plugins also stores click counts in the form of a custom field on that custom post type, so it comes really handy when it comes to track and analyze your affiliate click through rates.
A must have plugin for all the WordPress users who are bad at tracking and managing all of their outbound links from their sites.
7. SEO Squirrly
SEO Squirrly works like a SEO consultant for non-SEO people. To put it simply, even if you don’t have a clue about SEO, you can use this plugin to optimize your content both for readers and search engines like a pro.
Once the plugin is installed on your WordPress site, you simply pick a topic before writing and the interface will light up green if you’re doing everything right. When all the lights are green, you can publish your page because your text has great SEO and it’s 100% optimized so you can better rankings from search engines like Google. Here’s how it looks like;
The great thing about using this incredible WordPress SEO plugin is that it works well in WordPress sites that already have Yoast and All In One SEO so you don’t need to worry if you’re already using any one of them.
Here are some of the features of this plugin:
- Works like an in-house SEO expert by suggesting you how to improve your on-page SEO.
- Gives access to copyright free images to use within your content.
- Squirrly Snipet you can control the information and how it looks when someone is find your site.
- Also generates XML sitemaps for your site (so you don’t need additional XML sitemap plugin to install).
- Also offers you related internal links while writing your content so you can better internlink to your old posts for excellent SEO rankings.
So what are you waiting for?
Broken links or dead links are dangerous as they can kill your SERP rankings (Google penalizes sites that have dead links or broken links). So make sure to fix all the dead and broken links on your sites if you are concerned about getting more search engine traffic.
One of the easiest ways to find and fix broken links is to use the top SEO plugin in WordPress directory, “broken link checker”.
This plugin thoroughly monitors your site and it will check your posts, comments and other content for broken links and missing images, and notify you if any dead links are found.
Here are some of the benefits of using this plugin:
- Monitors links in your posts, pages, comments, and custom fields.
- Detects links that don’t work, missing images and redirects.
- Notifies you either via the Dashboard or by email.
- Makes broken links display differently in posts (optional).
- Prevents search engines from following broken links (optional).
- You can search and filter links by URL, anchor text and so on.
- Links can be edited directly from the plugin’s page, without manually updating each post.
- Highly configurable as per your SEO needs.
9. All In One Schema Rich Snippets
Are you looking to get more click through rates from search engines? Then use All in one schema rich snippets plugin made to boost your clicks from Google results by giving you access to show rich snippets.
This is one of the best SEO plugins if you want to get better rich snippets for your targeted keywords. A rich snippet is basically a short summary of your page in the search results of Google which usually includes star ratings, author photo, image etc.
This plugin helps in getting better click through rates which further increase your search traffic so make sure to grab it from the below link.
10. SEO ultimate plugin
This all-in-one SEO plugin is one of the top SEO plugins available in WordPress right now and this plugin gives you complete control over title tags, no-index, meta tags, Open Graph, slugs, canonical, auto links, 404 errors, rich snippets and many more to boost your search visibility.
This plugin customizes your homepage’s <title> tag (for better results) and also formats the <title> tags of posts, pages, categories, tags, archives, search results, and more!
This plugin reduces auto link frequency by a given percentage with the frequency dampener feature (very useful for large sites.)
In a nutshell, this plugin is the ULTIMATE SEO plugin for most of your search engine optimization needs to boost your organic traffic. Moreover it’s completely free and it has been downloaded by over 1.3 million people worldwide!
11. Author hReview
Are you running a website that’s major source is from affiliate marketing? If yes, you know the importance of using review box for each product or tool that you promote through your blog, right?
This is where Author hReview comes into handy which helps you to create a review box for each plugin or tool you recommend and it will also help you in getting rich snippets along with star ratings for the products that you promote (in search results).
This plugin makes use of post meta fields, which allows you to easily insert your review and rating information in your blog posts and pages and makes it really simple to edit in the future and you can customize later however you want.
Author hReview also has a premium version which I’m currently using on this blog which has even more better features that are listed below:
- Custom icons
- Pros cons lists
- Preloading functionality
12. The SEO framework
This is the ultimate WordPress SEO plugin which gives you an automated, easy accessible and extremely fast SEO solution for any WordPress site to quickly skyrocket your website rankings.
This plugin gives you access to an SEO bar from your dashboard by showing various colors (green means, your SEO is good) so you can quickly optimize your posts. Here’s how it looks like;
Here are some of the uses of installing this awesome SEO WordPress plugin:
- Allows you to optimize every public page, post, taxonomy, and term.
- This plugin shows you how to improve SEO with a beautiful SEO bar.
- Also helps your pages get shared through Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites.
13. Google analytics by MonsterInsights
We all know how important it is to install Google analytics for our websites. But it’s always a pain to go to Google analytics to check your traffic metrics. This problem gets solved by MonsterInsights plugin which gives you instant access to your Google analytics without from your WordPress dashboard itself.
Simply install the plugin, connect it to your Google analytics account and boom you can start tracking and checking your website traffic metrics whenever you want instantly from your dashboard.
With this incredible WordPress SEO plugin, you don’t need to wait till the next day to find out about traffic spikes or potential problems. You can get real time stats along with the demographics.
If you want to boost your search rankings, make sure to create a mobile friendly website. If you think, making your site mobile responsive costs you a ton of money or time, you’re wrong.
With the help of WPtouch plugin, you can instantly turn your site into mobile friendly. This plugin automatically adds a simple and elegant mobile theme for mobile visitors to your WordPress website.
15. WP SEOPress
This is a great SEO plugin for content analysis and helps you easily optimize your content and provides you easy access to boost your social shares. Here’s how it looks like;
Here are some of the features of this awesome WordPress SEO plugin:
- Easy access to titles, meta descriptions to change data however you want
- Gives you access to Google Analytics with downloads tracking, custom dimensions, ip anonymization, remarketing, demographics and interest reporting, cross-domain tracking
- Supports canonical URL
- Meta robots (noindex, nofollow, noodp, noimageindex, noarchive, nosnippet)
- Helps you build your custom XML Sitemap to improve search indexing
- Image XML Sitemaps to improve search indexing for Google Images.
- You can do redirections in post, pages, custom post types
- You can easily import posts and terms metadata from Yoast SEO
16. Internal Links Generator
Internal linking plays a crucial role in improving your search rankings. But most bloggers don’t do it because they find it really time consuming to find the relevant links while creating content.
This plugin solves that problem by showing relevant links to interlink within your content. Here are some of the benefits of using this plugin:
- This incredible WordPress SEO plugin counts how many times keywords from you list is found in your blog’s content
- You can set the limit for keyword usage in your internal links. That is keyword priority setup so you can prioritize your keywords list accordingly.
- You are able to find the keywords you want to link within the content of your website.
- You can also manually set how many words to look for before and after your keyword, which can help you find not only particular keywords but the surrounding words as well. This will make your anchor texts for diversification for better rankings in Google search results.
17. Smush Image Compression
Compressing your images that you use within your content can be so much helpful for you in getting better rankings and more importantly images with less sizes so your pages load really faster. This plugin is helpful in compressing your images without losing most of their quality.
Here are some of the benefits of using this plugin:
- Easily optimize your images using advanced lossless compression techniques.
- You can set maximum width and height and large images will automatically scale before being added to your media library Process JPEG, GIF and PNG image files (this is an awesome feature so you can automatically scale your images without wasting your time).
- You can optimize any image in any directory from your sites (you can even access all of your pre-used images to compress all of them at once).
- Asynchronously auto-smush your attachments for super fast compression on upload.
- Manually smush your attachments individually in the media library, or in bulk 50 attachments at a time.
- You can easily smush all standard images which are 1MB or smaller in size.
If you’re running a website for some time, you already know the pain of 404 error pages, deal links or broken pages etc. They are not only bad for your audience but also hurt your website rankings because Google won’t tolerate the sites with huge 404 error pages or broke pages.
You need to find and fix those broken pages as soon as possible. With this plugin you can easily manage 301 redirects, keep track of 404 errors and manage all your broken pages at once.
You can simply redirect your broken pages to some other high performing pages for better rankings and you can easily keep track of all your 301 redirects at one place.
19. LiteSpeed Cache
This is a PHP-based plugin which was developed to increase the website performance by using its built-in cache system. Works like a charm to remove your overall PageSpeed score developed by Google.
Here are some of the benefits of using ultimate SEO plugin for WordPress:
- Image optimization
- WebP image format support
- PageSpeed score optimization
- Load CSS/JS Asynchronously
- Lazyload images/iframes
- Content Delivery Network support
- HTTP/2 Push for CSS and JS
- Database Cleaner and Optimizer
- Browser Cache
20. EWWW Image Optimizer
We all know the importance of using images within our articles, pages, landing pages etc. But one common mistake I notice that other bloggers often make is they don’t optimize their images at all.
If you use large size image files within your content, it will create burden on your hosting databases and take too much time to load your web pages which results in slow loading times.
You must take care of your website loading times because Google gives top priority to those pages that load faster. Here’s where EWWW image optimizer plugin comes into play. Here’s how it looks like;
This plugin will save you storage space and bandwidth.
This plugin will automatically optimize new images that you upload, it can also optimize all the images that you have already uploaded, and optionally convert your images to the best file format.
Why SEO is still king?
Ever wondered why top blogs always get better search rankings? It’s because they always get a lot of backlinks and social shares on their posts. If you want to get more search engine traffic, you also need to do the same thing, you should work hard on getting more social shares, and incoming links to your blog posts in order to increase your organic traffic.
SEO traffic is still king because quality content always get better results. Above all, search engine traffic converts really well. It means, if someone finds your website products through search engines, they will more tend to buy your products because they are already in a search of finding solutions to their needs. So focus on getting more search engine traffic, it will definitely give you better results.
Conclusion about best WordPress SEO plugins 2018
All the above mentioned SEO plugins are best and suitable for all the bloggers ranging from new to pro who are thinking to grow their organic traffic. Make sure not to use too many SEO plugins as they can only hurt your rankings and slows down your website page loading times. So give it a try one after the other and stick to any of the few top SEO plugins that fit your needs.
My only suggestion before using any top SEO WordPress plugin is that, know it well in advance. How the plugin functions, and who developed it as there are lots of plugin developers out there who are using bad practices to develop plugins and insert malicious codes. So beware of this fact before using any SEO plugin for WordPress sites.
How many of you are using the above mentioned best SEO WordPress plugins? Do you have any more recommendations on new SEO plugins? Please share your thoughts in the comments.