Rank Math vs Yoast SEO: Which Tool is Best to Boost Your Site’s SEO?
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Rank Math vs Yoast SEO? It's a question that anyone in web publishing will ask themselves at some stage of their website's journey. They’re SEO plugins for the WordPress content management system and are both very popular.
The Google Helpful Content Update and the September Core Update, which both rolled out in September 2022, have had a profound SEO impact. Now, more than ever, website owners need all the SEO help they can get from search engine positioning tools and more to rank their sites higher in search engine results pages (SERPs).
You'll ultimately need to choose which SEO plugin best suits your publishing needs. In this post, we’ll pit Rank Math against Yoast SEO in several categories and see which one comes out on top.
Let's dive in.
- What Is Rank Math SEO?
- What Is Yoast SEO?
- Rank Math vs Yoast - Which Is Better Overall?
- Frequently Asked Questions about Rank Math vs Yoast SEO
- Rank Math vs Yoast: What's the Verdict?
What Is Rank Math SEO?
Rank Math SEO is an SEO plugin for WordPress that was created by the team behind MyThemeShop. It’s relatively new on the scene, having only been around since October 2019.
Rank Math aims to make it easy for anyone to optimize their website for search engines without needing an advanced understanding of SEO concepts. The plugin does this by providing an easy-to-use interface and offering a wide range of features, both in the free and premium versions.
Rank Math Free Version Features
Rank Math's free version includes numerous features that are aimed at helping you to optimize your website's content and structure for better search engine ranking. The free version may not be as feature-packed as the paid pro version, but its capabilities drastically improve your on-page SEO.
Some of the features included in Rank Math's free offering are:
1. Keyword Suggestions for Google SERPs
The field for entering the focus keyword also offers multiple related keywords that you may want to use in your post. Rank Math pulls these keyword suggestions from Google's SERP data, and it's an excellent resource for coming up with topic ideas.
Normally, keyword research for SEO is a time-consuming process, but Rank Math's keyword suggestions make it much easier. Simply enter your seed keyword into the field, and you'll get a list of related keywords you can use in your post.
2. Comprehensive SEO Analysis
Rank Math's SEO analysis tool goes a step further and analyzes your whole website for SEO performance. It scrutinizes factors such as:
- Your website's speed
- Internal linking
- The use of social media
Rank Math will give you an SEO score for your website and offer suggestions on how to improve your ranking based on its results.
3. Google Search Console Integration
Rank Math's Google Search Console integration is a handy tool that allows you to see how your website is performing in the SERPs directly from your WordPress dashboard.
The integration pulls data from Google Search Console and displays it in an easy-to-understand format. You can see things, such as the number of impressions and clicks your website is getting, along with your average position in the SERPs.
The beauty of this integration is that you don't have to leave your WordPress dashboard to keep track of your website's SEO performance. It helps to:
- Monitor your SEO progress and spot any potential issues in real-time
- Make changes to your website accordingly
4. 5 Free Content AI Credits
Rank Math's Content AI is a machine-learning tool that analyzes your content and offers feedback on how to improve it for better search engine ranking. The tool scrutinizes publishing factors such as:
- Length of your post
- Use of keywords
- The overall structure of your content
Based on its analysis, Content AI will offer a score for your post along with a list of actionable items to help improve your ranking. Suggestions include moderating links, images, and headings.
Other factors that Content AI looks at are:
- Post title
- Meta title and description
- Introductory sentence
Five free credits are included with the free version of Rank Math, and you can use them to analyze as much content as you like. If you need more credits, you can purchase them from within the Content AI interface.
5. 1-Click Import from Yoast SEO
You'll be happy to know that Rank Math can import your settings with just one click if you're coming from another SEO plugin, such as Yoast SEO. This feature makes it easy to switch to Rank Math without starting from scratch.
6. Complete Divi Integration
Divi is one of the most popular WordPress themes available, and Rank Math offers full integration with the theme. This integration makes it easy to set up Rank Math's features without having to go through a lot of settings pages.
Working with Divi also means that you can take advantage of Rank Math's custom fields to add extra metadata to your posts and pages.
This metadata can help improve your website's SEO, making it easier for search engines to find and index your content.
7. Comprehensive Elementor Integration
Most WordPress sites are now using page builders to create custom post types and pages. This trend has given rise to several WordPress plugins that offer full integration with popular page builders.
Rank Math is one such plugin; it offers comprehensive integration with Elementor. This integration makes it easy to use Rank Math's features without much hassle.
Working with Elementor also means that you can take advantage of Rank Math's custom fields to add extra metadata to your posts and pages. Also, the website speed optimization features can help improve your website's loading time, which is a SERP ranking factor (and for even more help check out our list of great WordPress speed optimization services).
Rank Math Paid Version Features
The free version doesn't have every perk that Rank Math Pro has to offer, and some paid features are definitely worth the investment if you're serious about SEO.
Here are some of the most notable features that come with Rank Math Pro:
1. Advanced Automated Image SEO Options
One of the most useful features that come with Rank Math Pro is the ability to optimize your images for SEO automatically. This feature can help you save a lot of time, as you won't have to optimize your images for each post manually.
You can set up image optimization rules that will be applied to all of your images automatically with Rank Math Pro. These rules entail adding ALT text and title tags to your images.
It also automatically compresses your images to help improve your website's loading time.
2. Self-Hosted Google Analytics JS File
Another handy feature that comes with Rank Math Pro is the ability to self-host your Google Analytics JS file. This file is responsible for tracking your website's traffic and can be quite large.
By self-hosting this file, you can reduce your website's loading time, as the file loads from your server instead of Google's servers. It ultimately helps to improve your website's SERP ranking.
3. Google Analytics without Tracking Cookies
Rank Math Pro also allows you to use Google Analytics without tracking cookies. Privacy concerns are serious business these days, and many people are using ad blockers to prevent their data from being tracked.
With Rank Math Pro, you can still use Google Analytics to track your website's traffic without having to worry about cookies being used. It's an effective way to respect your visitors' privacy while still being able to track your website's performance.
4. Track Individual Post SEO Performance
Every post on your WordPress site is an opportunity to rank higher in the search engines, and you can track the SEO performance of each post on your site with Rank Math Pro.
This feature allows you to see how well your post is ranking for certain keywords and what you can do to improve its ranking. It's an excellent tool for fine-tuning your SEO strategy and keeping an eye on your competition.
5. Detect Orphan Pages
Orphan pages are pages on your website that are not linked to any other page on your site. They're essentially hidden from search engines, as they can't be found through any internal linking.
With Rank Math Pro, you can detect orphan pages on your website and then add links to them from other pages on your site. It's a simple way to improve your website's internal linking and ensure all your pages get indexed by search engines.
For more information on how to find orphan pages, see our guide here.
6. Superior Bulk Edit Options
Bulk editing is a handy way to make changes to multiple posts or pages simultaneously. With Rank Math Pro, you can bulk edit your SEO titles, descriptions, and focus keywords. You can also bulk edit your post slugs and permalinks, which is useful if you need to change the URL structure of your website.
It's a time-saving feature that can help you make changes to your website quickly and efficiently. Thus, it's an invaluable tool for busy webmasters with robust websites.
Rank Math Pros and Cons
Using Rank Math attracts some notable pros and cons. The good outweighs the bad, but it would help to identify and differentiate the two before deciding to use the plugin.
The cons first:
- It is a newer software compared to Yoast with less user feedback available, so it might still have some hidden glitches.
- There are occasional reports from users who say that their website's speed has decreased after installing Rank Math. While this could be caused by other factors as well, it's something to remember.
Now for the pros:
- The plugin is constantly being updated and improved by its developers who are experienced WordPress professionals.
- It has a free version, even for commercial websites.
- Rank Math is very easy to set up and use, even for beginners.
- It offers a wide range (15+) of built-in features, with both the free and premium versions.
- The interface is straightforward and user-friendly.
- It is fully compatible with other popular WordPress plugins, such as WooCommerce.
- Tons of built-in schema support to help you win rich snippets in the SERPs.
- The paid version is reasonably priced and offers excellent value for money.
- It comes with excellent documentation and customer support.
What Is Yoast SEO?
Yoast SEO is the brainchild of Joost de Valk and is an impressively effective WordPress plugin.
It's an all-in-one SEO solution for WordPress websites. Yoast SEO offers a wide range of features, including the ability to tweak your site for specific keywords, generate XML sitemaps, and edit your .htaccess and robots.txt files.
This plugin is popular among WordPress users, as it's easy to use and offers a wide range of features. Plus, you can use the free version until you're ready to upgrade to the paid version.
Get all of the details in our Yoast SEO review here.
Yoast SEO Free Version Features
1. Single Page/ Post Keyword Optimization
This feature allows you to optimize your website for specific keywords. Yoast SEO will analyze your website's content and help you to improve your ranking for that keyword. It suggests the use of the focus keyword within the:
- Meta description
- H2s and H3s
- Image alt tags
- Anchor text
This feature does not apply sitewide but only on an individual post or page basis.
2. XML Sitemaps
Yoast SEO automatically generates XML sitemaps for your website. These sitemaps help search engines to index your website more easily. You can easily feed the sitemap link into your Google Search Console account, and Google bots will start crawling your website.
3. Edit .htaccess and Robots.txt Files
Yoast SEO allows you to edit your .htaccess and robots.txt files from within the WordPress dashboard. It's a handy feature if you need to change these files but don't want to log into your server via FTP.
4. Meta Tags
Yoast SEO allows you to add custom meta tags to your website's header. These tags help to improve your website's click-through rate from search engine results pages. The meta tags include:
- SEO title: the title that appears on search engine results pages
- Meta description: the short description of your website that appears on search engine results pages
5. Readability Analysis
Yoast SEO analyzes your website's content and gives you a readability score. The score is based on the Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease test. The test checks the length of your sentences and the number of syllables in your words.
A high score means that your website's content is easy to read. A low score means that your content is difficult to read. Yoast SEO also checks the use of transition words and passive voice and gives you a list of errors so that you can fix them.
Yoast SEO Paid Version Features
1. Multiple Keyword Phrases
The premium version offers a larger reach as you can target multiple keyword phrases with each piece of content.
2. Fast Internal-Linking Suggestions
Google loves websites that have a lot of internal links. Yoast SEO's paid version gives you suggestions for links to other articles on your website so that you can easily add them to your content.
3. Redirect Manager
The Redirect Manager feature will help you to set up a redirect if you ever need to change the URL of a page on your website. It ensures anyone who visits the old URL will be automatically redirected to the new one.
4. Social Media Previews
The social media previews feature allows you to see how your website's content will look when it's shared on social media. It's a handy feature, as you can ensure that your website's content looks good when it's shared on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media platforms.
5. Priority Support
The premium version of Yoast SEO comes with priority support from the plugin's developers. If you ever have any questions or need help with the plugin, you can contact Yoast's support team and they'll be happy to help.
6. SEO Workouts
The SEO Workouts feature helps you to keep your website's SEO up-to-date. Yoast SEO will send you an email every two weeks with a list of tasks you need to complete, such as adding new content or updating your website's design.
7. No Ads
The premium version of Yoast SEO does not show any ads.
Yoast SEO Pros and Cons
- Yoast SEO offers generous features, even in the free version.
- It is constantly updated to reflect the latest changes in Google's algorithm.
- Use it in multiple languages.
- Yoast SEO has a large community of users and developers.
- Yoast SEO's features can be confusing for those who are not familiar with SEO.
Rank Math vs Yoast - Which Is Better Overall?
The best way to decide whether Rank Math or Yoast SEO suits you is to be scientific about it. We took both plugins and ran some tests to see which one came out on top. The trick was looking at it from multiple perspectives. We looked at features, ease of use, support, and popularity.
Here are the results:
Which one has better features?
Yoast SEO and Rank Math are both feature-rich plugins. However, Rank Math boasts extra features than what Yoast SEO has to offer. It has a built-in AMP module, a Schema markup generator, a 404 monitor, and a redirect manager.
As for their free versions, Rank Math has a slight edge over Yoast SEO.
While both plugins offer features like title and meta optimization, XML sitemaps, and social media integration, Rank Math offers more features in its free version. These include support for multiple keywords, internal linking suggestions, and email notifications.
Which one has a better user experience?
Yoast SEO, on the other hand, can be overwhelming for beginners.
The sitewide configuration settings are also simpler in Rank Math. In Yoast SEO, you need to go through multiple tabs and sub-tabs for the right settings.
Which one is better for SEO?
These two SEO plugins are effective at their job. However, we think that Rank Math is slightly better for SEO.
The main reason is that Rank Math can help you optimize your website for multiple keywords, while Yoast SEO can only help you optimize your website for one keyword unless you get the paid version.
Another SEO advantage of Rank Math is that it lets you assess sitewide SEO settings, while Yoast SEO only allows you to assess individual posts and pages. It's a small difference that significantly impacts your SEO strategy.
Which one is more popular?
Yoast SEO has over five million active WordPress user installations, while Rank Math has over one million active users. The vast majority of users are happy with both plugins, and Rank Math is growing faster than Yoast did when it was younger in the SEO world.
Rank Math is relatively new in the WordPress plugin market and has already managed to attract a robust user base.
Frequently Asked Questions about Rank Math vs Yoast SEO
How do you move from Rank Math to Yoast SEO or Vice Versa?
There is no need to uninstall the old plugin before installing the new one. However, we recommend that you deactivate and delete the old plugin before installing and activating the new one.
Moving from Rank Math to Yoast SEO
To export your SEO settings from Rank Math to Yoast SEO, just follow these simple steps as published by Yoast SEO.
- Backup your site in case of any website mishaps: WordPress plugins and your hosting packages provide reliable backup options.
- Deactivate Rank Math: Do this to avoid conflicts with the new plugin. Just head to the plugins section of your WP dashboard.
- Install and activate Yoast SEO: You can easily do this from the plugins section of your WP dashboard.
Once you're done, follow these steps:
- Open the tools section on your WP dashboard.
- Hit the import/export link.
- Choose to import settings from other SEO plugins (Yoast).
- Complete the initial Yoast SEO plugin configuration.
- Uninstall and delete the Rank Math plugin to optimize website speed.
Moving from Yoast SEO to Rank Math
Moving from Yoast SEO to Rank Math is a bit easier than moving from Rank Math to Yoast SEO.You don’t need to uninstall the Yoast SEO before installing Rank Math. However, we recommend that you deactivate Yoast SEO before installing and activating Rank Math.
Why? Well, it helps to avoid plugin clashes that cause bugs and errors on your website. Follow these simple steps to export your SEO settings from Rank Math to Yoast SEO:
- Backup your website.
- Deactivate but don’t delete the Yoast SEO plugin.
- Install and activate Rank Math plugin.
- Go to Rank Math settings on the WP dashboard for a 1-Click Settings from Yoast SEO.
- Uninstall and delete the Yoast SEO plugin to optimize website speed.
Do I need both Yoast SEO and Rank Math?
No, you don't need both plugins. If you're just starting, we recommend that you use Rank Math. It's a newer plugin with more features than Yoast SEO.
Can I use both plugins on my WordPress website?
Yes, you can use both plugins on your WordPress website. However, we don't recommend it because it's unnecessary and can cause conflicts. It could also affect your website’s core web vitals.
Rank Math vs Yoast: What's the Verdict?
What's the final verdict in our Rank Math vs Yoast SEO battle? While both are commendable SEO plugins, Rank Math has a slight edge over Yoast thanks to its more comprehensive free version and simpler interface.
Both plugins are easy to use and offer similar features. However, Rank Math's extra features and better user experience make it the better plugin overall.
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