If you are using WordPress then there are a number of good plugins for SEO. I created this tool to quickly compare the top 25 Best SEO plugins for WordPress that I use most often.
What is great is that you can sort, filter, and search the table below to find the best SEO plugins for your WordPress site quickly. (Try typing ‘Free’ below to see the best free SEO plugins for WordPress or ‘image’ or ‘video’ to find plugins to help you optimize images and videos.)
|On-Page SEO||Free – $69||Beginner – Advanced||Yoast SEO is one of the best known and most recommended SEO plugins for WordPress approaching 34 million downloads. It has tons of features that cover all of your On-Page SEO factors like meta titles & descriptions, sitemaps, social integration and more. You can benefit tons from the free version and you always have the option to upgrade to premium for even more features. Yoast also has an install team that you can pay to install and configure the SEO plugin for you. Learn More|
|PageSpeed||Free||Beginner – Advanced||Google has been harping on Pageload Speed for a couple years now as they are trying to improve UX on the web. Delivering fast page loads is becoming more important to rank on page 1 of Google and doing so also increases engagement and conversions on your website. One of the best ways to improve your PageLoad speed is by combining and minifying your static files like CSS and JS. Autoptimize is a powerful and easy to use plugin with both beginner and advanced admin settings that will do all of this technical work for you and greatly improve your website speed. Please note that combining and minifying your files can result in themes breaking and so implementing Autoptimize will take some trial and error to get your settings just right. Learn More|
|Engagement||Free||Intermediate||Google factors visitor behavior, especially engagement like bounce rate, time on site, & pageviews, into its ranking algorithm. So, anything you can do to decrease your bounce rate will improve your SEO and rankings, which is why Wbounce made the list of best SEO plugins. Wbounce will do just that, it offers a simple pop-up window that appears on a time you set for when your visitor lands on a page. By using this modal window pop-up you can eliminate a significant amount of your bounces. When compared to Pop-up Ally, Wbounce offers more design customization but you will need to be familiar with CSS and HTML to take advantage of this. Learn More|
All in One SEO Pack
|On-page SEO||Free||Beginner – Advanced||All in one SEO pack is similar to Yoast SEO with a few differences. I’m including it on the list because the few differences may make this the better choice over Yoast for some people however in most cases I would recommend Yoast SEO. All in One SEO does translate to 57 languages, it is the only free all in one SEO plugin that integrates with WooCommerce, and it monitors your website for duplicate content. So, if one of those differences is essential to your site then this plugin may be the better choice over Yoast. Learn More|
|Engagement||Free – $99||Beginner||Like Wbounce, Pop-up Ally also offers a modal window pop up that will help reduce your bounce rate. To be honest I use both Pop-up Ally and Wbounce (not together) and like them both equally for different reasons. Depending on the site I’m working on and the design and goals, I will choose one over the other. Popup Ally is easier to use but offers less design customization. Learn More|
SEO by Squirrly
|Keyword Tools||Free, 19.99, 75.99||Beginner||SEO by Squirrly is a highly recommended content marketing and SEO plugin. Basically, the plugin will help you choose a target keyword and then grade your drafted blog posts and pages as you create them giving you insights into keyword usage and placement as well as other optimization points. The idea is that it helps you create content that is optimal for search engines AND real people. They have tons of positive testimonials from well-known marketers and although I don’t ALWAYS use this plugin, it definitely comes in handy if you are drafting large amounts of content. If you don’t have experience creating SEO content then this is definitely one of the best SEO plugins for you. Learn More|
|URLs / Links||Free||Beginner||This plugin is essential for all WordPress sites, it is free, and it is simple to use. Using Redirection you can easily manage all of your WordPress site’s 301 Redirects. You can organize your redirects into groups making it easy to manage them. Adding a new redirect is super simple using a 3 step form, no technical skill is required. I use this plugin on every single WordPress website that I do SEO on. Learn More|
All in One Schema.org Snippets
|On-page SEO||Free||Intermediate||Marking up your webpages with Schema data sends additional signals and information to Google about the webpage’s topic. For example, you can add schema to a recipe blog post, or a product review, or a video and then Google uses the Schema data to enhance your search result snippets. The enhanced snippets can increase CTRs on your links in search results which can, in turn, improve your rankings. Learn More|
|On-page SEO||$59.95||Beginner||Genesis is a bit more than a plugin, it is a framework developed by Studiopress. It is widely regarded as the most secure and search engine optimized parent theme for WordPress. You can use child themes with Genesis so that you get the front end appearance you like using the security and SEO of Genesis behind the scenes. Also, Genesis is HIGHLY customizable – I’ve seen websites that are extremely custom, built on this framework. I have also personally ranked dozens of Genesis sites at the top of Google and managing the on-page SEO is very easy. Learn More|
|URLs / Links||$50, $100, $200||Intermediate||LinkPatrol is developed by the SearchEngineJournal team and it makes it easy to manage your website’s outbound links. You can quickly manage links by seeing easy to read reports of all of your site’s links and filtering on anchor text or URL to easily manage them in bulk. If you make a mistake, no big deal, you can reverse your changes and instantly restore links in bulk. Learn More|
|URLs / Links||Free||Beginner||This is a very handy SEO plugin for those of you who aren’t good with HTML. Rather than coding in the rel=”nofollow” tag for your links, this plugin adds a checkbox to your WordPress Editor so that you can just check the box when adding a link and it automatically tags it as “nofollow”. Learn More|
Remove Query Strings From Static Resources
|PageSpeed||Free||Beginner||This plugin is lightweight, requires NO configuration, and will help improve your Page load speeds which in turn improve your PageSpeed scores in Google Insights. In short, this plugin does exactly as titled, it removes query strings from static resources like CSS, JS, and Image files. This is important because these resources need to be cached but if the URL to them includes a query string, then they are no longer static and cannot be cached which slows down your website. Try a before and after test using Google PageSpeed insights before and after installing this plugin, your score should go up. Learn More|
W3 Total Cache
|PageSpeed||Free||Intermediate||If you are not caching your static website content like CSS, JS, and Image files then you are seriously slowing down the performance of your website. This increases visitor bounce rates and can reduce your search engine rankings. W3 Total Cache is the best free cache plugin with tons of settings for you to customize it for your WordPress site. Be careful, you will need to adjust settings to get the plugin to work with some themes, but again taking the time to do this is very important as caching your content is essential to your SEO success. Learn More|
|PageSpeed||Free – $49||Beginner||WP Smush is an image optimization plugin that will reduce the filesize of your images thus reducing the size and page load times of all of your webpages. It is extremely easy to use, you can click one time and bulk “smash” or optimize all of your images. The quality of your images is not affected and some users see a 30% decrease in file sizes from using WP Smush. Learn More|
NextGen Facebook Social Share
|Social||Free – $49.95||Intermediate||Social signals are extremely important to your Google search rankings. By adding social share buttons to your posts and pages you can increase the number of social shares and signals that your website receives thus improving your SEO and rankings. NextGen Facebook Social Share will make it easy for you to select which pages and posts have social share buttons, where the buttons are located, which social platform buttons you want to include, and design adjustments. Learn More|
|Social & On-Page SEO||Free – $49.95||Intermediate||In addition to making sure your pages include social share buttons, you also want to make sure that they pages and posts are optimized for social sharing. This involves making sure that the open graph data on the page is properly configured. This data controls which content displays when a link on your site is shared, such as the title, image thumbnail, and page/post summary description. WordPress Social Sharing Optimization & SEO (WPSSO) automatically extracts values from your content and sets the Open Graph (OG) data for optimal social sharing. Learn More|
|On-Page SEO||$9/month||Intermediate||If you are the type of person that would rather install just one plugin that offers everything you need, then SEOPressor may be for you. It covers just about every single On-Page SEO factor you could want to optimize including 301 redirects, content and keyword optimization, result tracking, canonical URLs, internal link control, and XML sitemaps. Learn More|
SEO friendly image
|On-Page SEO||Free||Beginner||Google and other search engines require “ALT text” for each of your images in order to know which keywords apply to that image. Google cannot see the actual images like humans, so it is essential that you include keyword optimized ALT text for all of the images on your WordPress site. SEO Friendly Image allows you to configure settings to automatically generate ALT text for the images on your website. This can save you hours of time in manually writing ALT text for all of your images, however, you may not have quite as much granular control over each individual image using this plugin. It can be a great solution for a WordPress site that hosts tons of images. Learn More|
|Keyword Tools||$17.00||Intermediate||Rankie allows you to track your SEO progress on a per page or post level. You can add your keywords that you are targeting on each piece of content and Rankie will track your rankings and traffic for your targeted keywords. Rankie will also track in general all of the keywords that are sending traffic to your website which is very important information. Learn More|
WP Social SEO booster
|On-Page SEO||Free||Beginner||Similar to WPSSO, this plugin automatically extracts data from your content and creates the important Open Graph (OG) tags that your content should have to appear optimal in search result snippets and in social media posts. The main reason that I am including both WPSSO and WP Social SEO Booster is because each one may have issues with your theme, so if that is the case try the other one to see which one works properly. Many users report that WP Social SEO Booster is 100% compatible with Yoast SEO. Learn More|
Better WordPress Minify
|PageSpeed||Free||Intermediate||Better WordPress Minify essentially performs the same function as Autoptimize which is to combine and minify your CSS and JS files which increases your Page load Speeds. However, I am including both plugins as top SEO plugins for WordPress because each plugin will have it’s own compatibility issues with various WordPress themes and plugins. So, if you try one and have issues then uninstall it and try the other. I have used both plugins on different sites and love them both. They have tons of customizable settings and can be tweaked to be used with any theme and plugins but they can take some expertise to configure. Learn More|
Easy Social Share Buttons
|Social||$19.00||Beginner||Easy Social Share Buttons will serve the same function as NextGen Facebook Social Share which is to add social sharing buttons to your pages and posts. I’m adding these because I use both plugins depending on the website I’m working on. Easy Social Share Buttons offer a cool modern button design that looks really nice on some sites. Also, Easy Social Share Buttons do not come in a free version however they are less than half the cost of the paid version of NextGen Social Share. Learn More|
|PageSpeed||Free||Intermediate||WP-Optimize is an awesome free plugin that comes widely recommended. It won’t do much for a brand new site, but over time your WordPress site’s database will require cleaning and optimizing for best performance. This plugin makes this process simple using a simple form rather than logging into PHPMyAdmin and running SQL queries manually to clean up your database. If you’ve been running your site for at least a couple months and are starting to notice it load pages slower, then it may be time to install and use WP-Optimize. Learn More|
WP SEO Video
|On-Page SEO||Free||Beginner||I’m adding WP SEO Video for those of you who publish lots of video content on your WordPress site. This plugin will automatically generate a sitemap for all of your videos telling Google to include them in Google Video search results. This should help your videos rank more frequently in search results as well as higher up in search results. You should also see an increased CTR to your videos that make it into search results as they will be marked as videos with a video thumbnail next to the search snippet. Learn More|
Google XML Sitemaps
|On-Page SEO||Free||Beginner||Having a sitemap for your WordPress site is essential to your SEO goals. A few of the other plugins in this list include a feature that will generate a sitemap, such as Yoast and All in One SEO. However, for those of you who don’t want to install an “all-inclusive” large plugin with tons of features, you can always opt for the Google XML Sitemaps plugin that is free and lightweight. This small plugin will automatically generate an XML sitemap for your wordpress site that is optimized for Google. Learn More|
Choosing the Best SEO Plugins for WordPress
I’ve gained experience with all of these SEO plugins while working on many different client’s sites that use various combinations of these plugins and I can vouch for all of these as being the best SEO plugins for WordPress.
I’m going to keep this table updated so that it has all the best SEO plugins for WordPress in 2016 and beyond.
One important note, I don’t ever use all 25 of these together, in fact at most I may use around 7 on one site at a time. It is best to use the least amount of plugins possible to achieve your goals. Just choose one plugin from each category that best suites your needs.
For those of you on a tight budget, the majority of these are low cost or no cost. That’s right, if you filter the table on the word “free” you can get a list of the best free SEO plugins for WordPress.
You can also filter on difficulty level by typing in “beginner” or “advanced”. So, regardless of your budget or skill level, now you’ve got no excuses 😉
Alright folks, it is time to get out there and start implementing the best SEO for WordPress in 2016 to get more traffic to your site.
Best of luck!
Have questions about any of these SEO plugins? Just ask in the comments below, right now!