Are You fed up with bugs in Yoast? Looking for a switch? Here you go! The best alternative to Yoast, The Rank math SEO Plugin
SEO plays an important role in blogging. Without proper SEO it?s impossible to rank in search engine result pages. One of the most popular SEO plugins for WordPress is Yoast. Recently I moved from Yoast to Rank Math for all my WordPress blogs.
All Topics In This Article
- 1 Why do we need an SEO plugin
- 2 Evolution of Rank Math
- 3 Rank Math Vs Yoast SEO ( Free Version )
- 3.1 The Interface
- 3.2 Use Up To 5 Focus Keyword
- 3.3 Detail Content Analysis
- 3.4 404 Page Monitor
- 3.5 Redirection Manager
- 3.6 Inbuilt Schema Markup
- 3.7 Advanced Image SEO
- 3.8 Open Graph Meta Data Support
- 3.9 Integrated Google Search Console
- 3.10 Advanced Meta & Titles
- 3.11 Local SEO
- 3.12 Customized Sitemap
- 3.13 SEO Analysis Tool
- 3.14 AMP Compatibility
- 3.15 Support
- 4 Rank Math Vs Yoast ( In A Nutshell)
- 5 Bonus Tips: How to score 100 in Rank Math SEO
- 6 Conclusion
Why do we need an SEO plugin
WordPress does not ship with an SEO module. So if you want to have SEO functionality in your WordPress blog you have to have an SEO plugin
Gone are those days when you can rank even without proper SEO. The reason being the competition was very low at that time. In 2019 it’s more than magic if you can rank without doing proper SEO
All WordPress SEO plugins come with an intuitive checklist to show you how your posts are SEO optimized. Those plugins check SEO based on numerous parameters.
Anything shows wrong in the checklist can be worked upon and fixed before you publish the article. Apart from on-page SEO optimizations, those plugins are also responsible for submitting sitemaps to search engines along with other off-page SEO activities.
Evolution of Rank Math
I think the timing of Rank Math launch was great. Early 2919 when Yoast was struggling with numerous bugs Mythemeshop came up with Rank Math plugin. People were looking for an alternative SEO plugin and Rank Math was bang on target.
One more thing that went to Rank Math way is that it does not have a premium version. All features are free in Rank Math. When all other SEO plugins charge a hefty amount for premium features, Rank math offers all premium features for free.
Currently, Rank Math is sailing around 100K download with almost 5 ? ratings.
Rank Math Vs Yoast SEO ( Free Version )
I was always fascinated by a couple of premium features that Yoast offers. I always wanted those features in my blog. But the price for Yoast Premium was way too high for my budget. So I had to settle for Yoast Free.
With Rank Math, I had a chance to explore those premium features without any cost. Rank Math is so powerful and feature-packed that I could delete a couple of plugins which were integrated into Rank Math itself.
The interface plays a big role in overall customer experience. Rank math shows up a setting wizard as soon as you activate the plugin. The easy to use navigation will take you through smoothly without any hassles.
Although the initial wizard covers the basic setup, you can dig into detailed settings if you want to control Rank Math the way you want. There are many settings option to control different Rank Math functionality
If you used Yoast or any other SEO plugins before, Rank Math has the option to import all metadata of all those plugins. So you will no longer feel the pain of moving to a new SEO plugin. You can also connect to Google Search Console and other search engines on the go in setting wizard.
If we talk about Yoast, I won’t see much of difference compare to Rank Math. It also has easy to use interface and smooth navigation. The problem is that most of the features are locked for the upgraded version.
Use Up To 5 Focus Keyword
This is one of the features that I always wanted in Yoast Free Version. It is not always a smooth ride to play around with a single keyword and rank it high. Rank Math offers up to five focus keyword that can be used in a blog post.
The first keyword is the main focus keyword in Rank Math
The cherry on the cake is that while typing those focus keywords, Rank Math also auto-suggest common keywords from Google Search Console. So you end up with keywords that are actually getting searched in Google. You can write your article based on those five focus keywords and you will have a higher chance of getting ranked in search engines.
Detail Content Analysis
Well, Content Analysis is available in all SEO plugins. How Rank Math outperform is that it offers a detailed content analysis. Even minor checkpoints are also captured in Rank Math.
Detail analysis may not be required for an experienced blogger but for a newbie, it’s a very good feature. The content analysis checkpoint changes colours based on the focus keyword selected and how good the optimization has been done. Below is the one example of how the interface of content analysis looks like.
Ideally, we should target for a score of ? but it’s not always possible. I personally target for a score 80 and that always worked. One more good part of content analysis is that it provides ratings in numeric value unlike Yoast that only shows value as “Good” or ” Bad“.
404 Page Monitor
A 404 page shows up when a page was not found in your server but the user is trying to access it. This happens when you submit your blog post URL to google and then delete the post itself.
404 errors have a severe effect on SEO and gradually Google may de-rank your website if you don’t fix it. The best solution for 404 error is to redirect the deleted URL to an URL which is currently present in your website.
Fortunately, Rank Math has this premium option out of the box. The moment you delete a post, Rant Math will ask you to add a redirect URL. You can also set a global value for the 404 redirect URL. For example, I want all my deleted URL to be redirected to the home page.
Yoast also has this feature but at the cost of a hefty premium for their paid plan. I wonder why Yoast is offering such important feature only in paid plans. Well, now we don’t have any complaint as we have Rank Math to get rid of 404 pages.
You get 404 error when you delete a post but a user tries to access it. Right? What if you don’t delete the post but change the URL. In that case, we will get an error which is called Redirection error.
Rank Math has a well-set mechanism to handle redirection. The moment you change the URL you will be presented with an option to add a redirection URL. Now that can be your home page or any other page you want. Yoast also has the feature but only in the paid plan.
Inbuilt Schema Markup
Well, this is one feature that blown me away and I became a die-hard fan of Rank Math. I can’t believe that an SEO plugin can offer schema markup also. Those who are not aware of schema markup should look into the below image.
In this image, you can see the star rating, image and voting details for search result links. This is called Rich Snippet and can be achieved only through schema markup. Schema markup or structured data tells search engines what your post is all about in a structured way. In this image, the first arrow shows a search result with stars. For sure, visitors will be attracted to those links. That is the reason Rich Snippet helps in high CTR.
Typically if you want to implement schema in your blog, then you have to buy premium plugins like WP schema pro. There are free plugins available but those are not up to the mark. I used a couple of free plugins before I explore Rank math. Rank Math comes with essential schema markup out of the box.
The reason I said ? Essential ? is because the premium plugin still offers more features. But as a normal user, you may not need any premium plugin if you have Rank Math. Yoast does not offer schema feature even in the paid version.
You can choose between many schema types like Article, Blog Post, Review, Recipe, Products and many more. You can set your type of schema at the initial wizard or you can set it one by one in every blog post. Rank Math also supports KK Star Rating which is one of the best plugins to show star rating in Google Search result.
Advanced Image SEO
Images contribute a major chunk of your WordPress blog speed. Image SEO has grown up to be a major factor for your blog SEO. Many of us do not give importance to Image SEO. While writing a post we simply keep on adding images without even bothering about the SEO.
It?s a best practice to add ? ALT attribute? to all images that we upload. That tells the search engine what the image is all about. The best practice is to have the major keyword in image ALT attribute and image title. Sometimes we miss to add image ALT attribute and that contributes to de-ranking of that particular post
Rank Math has a very unique feature which automatically adds image ALT attribute based on what you set in the setting. By default, it adds the post title as ALT attribute but you can set anything you want. This is a very useful feature for newbies who usually miss adding image Alt attributes. Personally, I prefer to add manually as I want to have more control over images.
Open Graph Meta Data Support
Do you know how Facebook and other media platform pulls images when you share a post in those social media platforms? It is because of the Open Graph ( OG) meta-tag data. Open graph meta tags was originally developed by Facebook so that users can post on Facebook with ease and with required information
Gradually open graph metadata is accepted by other social media platform and now it?s a must if you want to share your post on Facebook and Twitter. You can control what is getting shared and how it is getting shared using open graph metadata information.
Rank Math comes with support for Open Graph metadata and it can be set in the setting wizard or in the settings menu. You can also change open graph metadata for the individual post if you need to. On the other hand Yoast also supports Open graph but options are limited and you will hardly have control on those metadata.
Integrated Google Search Console
I wonder why this essential feature is no offered by Yoast. When you first set up Rank Math, it asks for Google Search console information and if that is correct Rank Math connects with Google search console
In fact, Yoast also connects to google search console. But Wait ! the game is not yet over ! Every SEO plugins connect with Google Search Console. What the big deal with Rank Math?
Rank Math not only connects with Google Search Console but Integrates with Google Search Console. What I mean to say by ? Integrates? is that Rank Math shows most of the search console data in the Rank Math dashboard itself. Don?t you feel that it?s a deal-breaker?
So next time you DONT need to browse Google Search Console to check your website search data. Just head on to Rank Math settings and ?Voila?. It has almost everything that Google search Console shows.
In the overview page, it shows a number of click against impressions, total keywords on which you blog is ranked, average CTR and many more data. In the search analysis page, you will get detailed analysis of each and every keyword that has a ranking in google search.
One of the key features that might come your way shortly is that Rank Math is trying to integrate the Google Keyword Planner. If they can do so that will be the nail on the coffin for many premium SEO plugins like Yoast. If they implement keyword planner, then you don?t need to go for other premium keyword planners like SEMRush or Aherfs
Although beating SEMRush or Aherfs is not an easy job and we can never compare Rank Math with those plugins but at least for beginners, rank math keyword planner might be a good bet if they launch it quickly.
Advanced Meta & Titles
Well, offering metadata options is a basic features that every SEO plugin offers. How Rank Math offers more is that it offers micro-level control of your metadata. You can change metadata for each and every aspect of your blog.
You can change metadata for post, page, cloud templates, author, tags, categories and the list is just growing. You won?t find that many option even in the premium version of Yoast. Every aspect can be globally controlled or can be controlled in individual posts or pages.
You can also No Index certain irritating pages like Paginated Page, Search Pages and password-protected pages. Sometimes it comes handy as you may not like to index everything from your blog. Especially I hate to index Paginated pages as it unnecessarily clutters my google search console. Rank Math helped me to No-Index such pages. Here is one video which shows how you can no-index paginated pages.
Local SEO is something which was always ignored by most of the SEO plugins. Those who are not aware of Local SEO should know that local SEO became an important factor recently for your business growth.
For example, if you run an SEO agency or a shop or an e-commerce business, you may target local SEO to get more audience. People prefer to search with the phrase ?Near By? If I need a SEO expert to help me out, how do I search. ? Best SEO agency in Hyderabad?, that’s how I will search . Right?
Rank Math has a Local SEO feature which helps you rank high in your Geography even though your website has low domain authority. This is a very useful feature for new business owners as they can quickly grow in their city or state. Unfortunately, neither Yoast or other SEO plugins offer this feature.
No other SEO plugin offers that level of customization in sitemap like how Rank Math offers. I wonder how it can offer so many features free of cost. You can control how many links in your sitemap and if you would like to include images in sitemap or not.
You can also exclude certain post or terms in the sitemap. You can create a sitemap for multiple categories like blog posts, images, products, pages, archives and many more. In fact, you can create sitemap based on your website content. You can also ping search engine whenever there is a change in the sitemap.
SEO Analysis Tool
One of the main pain areas of bloggers is that, even after doing proper SEO , their blogs do not rank. They get confused about what they are doing wrong. Rank Math can save those bloggers with their inbuilt SEO analysis tool.
Did you see any SEO plugin offer inbuilt SEO analysis tool? I don?t feel so. At least I can say that Yoast does not offer. So if you head on to Rank Math SEO analysis tool, it will show you how your website stands on SEO optimization.
Rank Math runs about 36 test and based on that it shows the score. It also shows in which test your blog passed and in which test your blog failed. You can work on the failed test and improve your blog SEO score. Even if you don?t have rank math installed, you can use below link to check SEO score of your website.
Here is the snapshot of BlogByts.com SEO insights. As you can see, Rank Math evaluates website on Basic SEO, Advanced SEO, Performance, Security and Social SEO. Any score above 80 is considered as a reasonable score.
AMP is the latest trend in Google searches. No doubt if your blog is not AMP compatible, you are losing a great chunk of traffic. All SEO plugins might be good for normal blogs but when we talk about AMP, none offers the compatibility. However, Yoast offers an AMP friendly plugin name ? Glue? but it suffers from its own set of problems
That?s not the case with Rank Math. It has a dedicated option for AMP and that works brilliantly. I never had an issue with the ranking of AMP pages and Rank Math is the reason for it. So if your blog has AMP, go for Rank Math with your eye closed.
I had a bitter experience with Yoast support and due to the large user base, they don?t even bother about normal users. I did not see them replying within a day for my queries. After a long wait, I usually get a generic reply which does not make any sense.
Coming to Rank Math, I had an altogether different experience. I had a chance to write to them a couple of times and to my surprise, I see Mr Bhanu Aluwalia is replying to those queries. For those who do not know who is Bhanu, He is the Co-Founder of Rank Math.
Many times I see they are sending videos to explain the solution to my problems. Wow !!! Is that something that makes sense to you to move to Rank Math. If Not let’s move on to this table so that you can get a clear picture of how Rank Math stands against Yoast.
Rank Math Vs Yoast ( In A Nutshell)
Up To 5 Focus keyword
Only One keyword in the free version
Detailed content alanysis
Short content analysis
Google search console integrated
Gogle search console connected
In-Built SEO analysis tool
No SEO analysis tool
Schema Markup code is available
No schema markup possible
Supports AMP out of the box
Need separate plugin for AMP
404 page monitor is available
404 monitor is not available in free version
Custom re-direction is possible
No custom re-direction is possible
All features are completely free.
Free version has very few features.
Bonus Tips: How to score 100 in Rank Math SEO
Although I never run for scoring 100, as I try to write for human and not Google. If anyone wants to try to achieve 100, they may follow below best practices but there is no guarantee that you will achieve 100.
- Focus keyword in title and content
- Focus keyword in meta description and URL
- Focus keyword in Headers ( In H2 its a must)
- Keyword density is up to 10%
- Article having more than 3000 words
- Enough external and internal links
- Image ALT attribute
- Positive sentiment in the title
- Power words in the title.
- Use a table of content plugin
- Use short paragraphs ( 2-3 sentences)
- Use YouTube Videos in Post
Rank Math is a new entrant in the SEO plugin list for WordPress. But it is more powerful and feature-packed than any other plugin available out there in the WordPress repository. Although Yoast is the leader for SEO plugin, lately it is bringing so many bugs and that is it?s the right time to try out Rank Math.
As per my knowledge Rank Math is currently used by many pro bloggers and you may find numerous positive reviews. Of course, those are not biased reviews as Rank Math is a free plugin and does not entitle for any Affiliate program.
So if you feel that the feature list in Yoast free version is locking the ultimate potential of your blog, then try Rank Math and I am sure you gonna love it. My final recommendation between Rank Math Vs Yoast SEO would be the Rank Math. For any questions or queries on Rank Math, please do write to me in the comment section and I will be happy to assist you.
But Hey, Don?t go away, we have some exciting article specially picked for you so that you can unlock the potential of your blog.