To improve SEO, you should at least use a few plugins. And not only those, who stated SEO in their title. SEO has to with keywords and links.
The normal SEO plugin just looks at your keywords, which is important but we know that social media is important and we know that Google finds mobile speed really important.
What does the so-called SEO plugin do
First of all the difference between good and great is probably the difference between buying and using the free version. The good SEO plugin will give you feedback on where you used your keywords. If you have read some other post about SEO, then by now you will understand that the position of your keyword in your content matters.
So the most important positions:
- meta description
- H1 heading of article
- several times in the text
- at a sub heading
- at an alt description of a picture
As you can see, I put the title and meta description at the top of the list. The list can be endless and depending on the amount of effort you are willing to make on on-page SEO. So this differs per person and probably per website.
ON-page or Off-page SEO plugin
To my opinion the title and meta description are the most important part of your on-page SEO. At least the part where you need a plugin for. For this purpose you can also a simple title and meta description plugin or just a header and footer plugin. Now I think it over, the title and meta description are not on-page but off-page SEO tools.
This leaves the on-page SEO to locate your keywords. I am using the popular Yoast plugin to check my the positions of keywords and add my title and description
The second part of off-page SEO is your link building. Nowadays we call this sharing. Getting a link in somebody else’s blog or website is nice, but will almost never happen. Most of the links which you find in pages are for internal promotion, for affiliate or other advertisement. Any link which just gives you a free exit to another page is marketing seen not the best idea.
So off-page is nowadays the sharing plugin. Of course, if you like to spend time you can visit the developer pages of Google plus, Facebook, LinkedIn and so-on. I found this time consuming and I am using now the plugin from Copyblogger. I have two reasons for this plugin
- I use Genesis and themes from StudioPress, Copyblogger is connected
- the sharing plugin shows the amount of sharing
Difference between Sharing or Connecting plugins
Also both sharing and connecting plugins looks alike they have different purposes. Sharing of an article give you links to this article, which is great if your goal is to promote this one article in the ranking of a search engine’s index list (like Google search results). For marketing purposes, the connection part is very important. As soon as you have a customer connected to a Facebook, Google plus.., it is easy to reach them when you have something to sell.
Besides the social media connection, there are also email subscription plugins. This email is even a more powerful marketing tool then the social connection at the several pages. Emails are seen as more personal and are more often read then some connection on social media. On the other hand the social media connection of Google plus can be measured by Google and email description still not. Although, you never can tell for sure, of course.
So in SEO way, the importance of sharing – connecting conflict a little bit with your marketing goals. This is probably why you should have a clear goal for the plugins which you use. You can also use them all three at once and see where you end up. I am doing this at the moment, but I am not sure if this is the best thing to do.
The cache plugin for SEO speed
So, if you come this far, you will realize that one plugin for SEO is not enough. At least I didn’t found the plugin yet which combines the counting of keywords with the sharing buttons. Maybe that will be done in a paid version. The contradiction is the fact that more plugins will slow down your speed. And speed is an SEO issue. Especially in the mobile world. I have read that Google start now to downgrade sites in the mobile world search results if they don’t load quickly enough.
Seen the fact that more and more people are using the internet just with their mobile or iPad, the speed just become one of the most important SEO factors. So, the cache plugins are becoming important too for your SEO. A cache plugin will store the ready html file on your server and present this to 99 % of your users..
I don’t use the cache plugin yet because I use a security plugin which also give you 3 choices in the caching, no caching, 2-3 times faster or 50 times faster. Till now I use 2-3 times faster. Actually I don’t like caching that much. So it claims that your site will become faster but there are several negative points about this caching:
- At a certain point I preferred the dynamic site above the html static site. With caching you actual go back to the html static site.
- I have experience with issues when replacing pictures in a post, resetting of the cache is not that straight forward
- updating your CSS file will seems to have no effect – (use CTRL+ F5 to reset your browser)
- you have no control on what your customer actual sees.
So if you sell something, and don’t have any problems with the above, caching is just serving your clients fast. Which is the great thing of caching.
The SEO tool for the future
Now mobile becomes the internet platform, the responsive webdesign is your first step before you look at all kind of plugins. Responsive means that your site still shows up great on a mobile phone or tablet or desktop. Each developer should give options that certain part of content will not show on mobiles. It would be great if there is a plugin which just highlight areas on your website which should not be displayed on mobile phones.
If you have a responsive theme, but still your site have a slow performance, then make a design without big files such as background pictures. Nice to look at, when it is finally loaded, but nowadays nobody waits for a website to load. So who cares if it is a nice design?
The next generation SEO tool will be specialized for the mobile phone:
- so it will not serve large files like image above 50kB
- it still checks your keywords
- it give you sharing + connecting options
- caching for mobile devices only, but delivers the correct content to desktops
Conclusion on SEO Plugins
Keeping in mind that speed becomes the mobile SEO factor of 2015 and link building shifted in the past from stationary links to sharing links, just a SEO plugin which is controlling your keyword on page is not enough.
Most SEO wizards are talking about the content and the importance of great content. This is seen as the way to get your social sharing links. Your website speed can be obtained in several ways. One way is to use cache. But I probably will write a separate blog on the speed subject.