Search Engine Optimization tool Yoast SEO will celebrate its first decade of helping bloggers get better search engine results in April.
In six months, Yoast SEO will celebrate its 10th birthday.
But if you’re planning to attend the party, you’ll have to be ready to act quickly. And you will be in among a small number of attendees! More on that in a moment.
Some background information might be in order.
First and foremost, SEO stands for search engine optimization. That’s a fancy label for efforts to make sure your site lands at the top of search results when someone Googles something you’ve written about.
You want your link toward the top, of course, because those are the links most often clicked.
Joost de Valk started the Yoast SEO plugin back in 2010. Yoast’s mission, according to its website, is “SEO for everyone.”
Founder de Valk “wanted to translate all the knowledge he had gained during the consultancy advice he was giving to large companies into a plugin that everyone could use,” the site states.
Back then, it debuted with the name WordPress SEO. It took its current name, Yoast SEO, two years later in 2012.
The plugin comes in two versions: free and premium.
I’ve used it a long time.
I’ve used the free version for many years now, and to be honest, I like it a lot. I’d consider it a “must-have” as blogging plugins go. In fact, I’ve previously named it as a plugin I wouldn’t want to be without.
I don’t keep track of such things, so I can’t tell you exactly when I first began using the plugin. It might have been from the beginning, but I’m just not sure about that.
I like the fact that it makes you think about how you’re using some of the best practices of SEO as you write. Its interfaces asks for the “focus keyphrase” by which you hope to be ranked. If then gives you easy-to-understand reviews of several indicators. The said reviews come in the form of smiling (or frowning) emojis ranging from red (for bad) to green (for good).
You can see, in realtime, how simple adjustments and corrections impact their prediction of success or failure.
I do think it helps a great deal. It also monitors things like active and passive voice. It’s easy to write too much of the latter and not enough of the former.
And, in terms of ease of readability, it even tells you when too many of your sentences run longer than 20 words. For someone like me, who tends to be a bit verbose at times, that’s extremely useful.
The party’s free…but there’s a catch!
Yoast says it plans to publish instructions soon on how people can apply to attend YoastCon 2020. I’m sure you already guessed that’s a convention built around Yoast and SEO.
In the past, people had to pay to attend YoastCon. This one, coinciding with the birthday celebration, won’t cost you anything to attend.
But the party will be limited to just 330 visitors. That’s the limit of the venue.
And speaking of venue, that might take some doing, depending on where you live. It’s being held close to Yoast headquarters, which happen to be in Wijchen, The Netherlands. So while you won’t have to pay to get in, you might have to pay plenty in airfare.
I think I’ll raise a glass to Yoast SEO from home as I continue to use its SEO plugin.
One of these days, I’ll even upgrade to the premium version. And I’ll be sure to let you know how that goes!