Between Rank Math SEO and Yoast SEO, which plugin yields better results?
If you ask most WordPress users, they’d probably tell you that they use Yoast SEO. Yoast SEO is the most popular plugin there is and boasts of over 5 million installations. Users see it as a trusted SEO option.
On the other hand, we have the Rank Math SEO. It can be gotten from MyThemeShop. It is not as popular as Yoast SEO and doesn’t have lots of active installations, but it has an amazing collection of features and great positive reviews.
So now the question is, which is better?
Should you go for popular opinion and one that’s supposedly trusted by many, or one that isn’t so popular but has great features that can boost your content and brand?
This is a huge problem for WordPress users because the CMS has a long list of plugins, so it may be difficult to choose the right one especially if you’re a beginner.
Well, this is what this article is here to help you decide.
But before we delve into comparing both plugins, why is SEO important?
Importance of SEO
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is every website owner’s best friend. The idea is to help get your content at the top (or at least, first page) of the search results.
This is important because search engines like Google and Bing have algorithms that rank important websites via search terms, and statistics have shown that top-ranking sites take 70% of the traffic.
SEO gets repetitive visitors and traffic from different sources so that your website can get to the top, or at least the first page of the search results.
Without further ado, let’s compare both SEO plugins on various bases and decide which is better.
Comparison between Rank Math and Yoast SEO
When it comes to User Interface, Yoast SEO is very bland and unattractive. You may think it’s not important, but whether you like it or not, SEO UI can spark creative ideas that can be incorporated into your online space. Yoast SEO emphasizes more on functionality than aesthetics.
For instance, if you go to the WordPress dashboard, click on SEO and then features, you’d only see a bunch of on/off buttons for different functionalities like XML sitemap, SEO analysis, readability analysis, text link counter, cornerstone content, etc.
Their sole focus is to get all options running under their various categories, but the interface is below attractive.
Most people argue that aesthetics isn’t important as long as it’s functional. But they shouldn’t be mutually exclusive. You shouldn’t give up one for another.
On the other hand, Rank Math SEO combines both functionality and aesthetics. It not only gives users this modern and contemporary feel but also improves their experience.
Once you go to the WordPress dashboard and click on Rank Math, all available options are given with mini-descriptions to help users understand their functions.
Unlike Yoast that only has on/off options for each function like link counter, Rank Math goes on to explain that it counts the number of external and internal links, both the ones done from and to your post. Users can comfortably make decisions without hassles.
It’s also arranged systematically to aid navigation.
There is a plugin for every online concept on WordPress, from online learning platforms, blogs, online forums, e-commerce, etc.
Woo-commerce is WordPress’s custom e-commerce plugin. If you want to create a shopping platform on WordPress where you can add products, create shopping lists, set up payment platforms, then Woo-commerce is your plug.
Millions of e-commerce store owners rely on woo-commerce to make their transactions seamless, compared to BigCommerce, Shopify and other e-commerce plugins. It has several extensions and themes, making it easier to add new features and customize your store. It can also handle both digital and physical products and makes affiliate sales easy.
But one major reason why people love Woo-commerce plugin is that it has great payment options available. It comes with an in-built payment gateway (PayPal and Stripe) and others can be added via extensions. It also handles taxes and shipping.
Now, Yoast and Rank Math SEO has provision for Woo-commerce, so users can input metadata about the products they sell so that it shows on the search engine results directly when someone searches for it.
As an e-commerce store owner, should you use Yoast or Rank Math?
Well, Rank Math SEO offers Woo-commerce plugin for free, but you can only get it on Yoast when you upgrade to the premium version.
Why pay for something when you can get it for free at the same quality?
If you’re a beginner with no prior knowledge of SEO or WordPress, then you should consider using Rank Math SEO.
Don’t get this wrong! Installation and activation of these SEO plugins are very easy and straightforward. When either plugin is activated, a new section will be created on the WordPress dashboard at the sidebar that allows you to customize different parts of the plugin and configure its content optimization pattern.
But the difference between both plugins is that Rank Math needs you to create a Rank Math account and configure it to your website. If you have an account already, you only need to login. A ‘setup wizard’ automatically starts up and prepares all options needed to make your experience smooth and seamless.
So, technically Rank Math configures itself. You don’t have to do a thing!
Yoast SEO on the other hand has a setup wizard, but you’ll need to activate that manually coupled with other manual activations they have to do. This may not be helpful for beginners. This only goes to show that Rank Math SEO is more user-friendly and compatible.
This is so important because beginners who decide the waters of the online world may be too engulfed in setting up other technical parts of the website. Adding manual Yoast SEO activation may be too much for them to handle at that point.
When it comes to keyword integration, Rank Math SEO beats Yoast SEO hands down.
Keyword integration is one of the most important factors in content optimization for search engines. Google, Bing, and other search engines have algorithms that weigh website content based on their relevance and place them accordingly on the result page.
You must select keywords or keyphrases carefully so that your posts and page will be properly optimized. When a user types in that keyword or keyphrase, your website can be at the top or at least the first page.
Yoast SEO is great when it comes to keyword optimization. On the free plan, you can optimize your content to rank using a single keyword, but you have to be on the premium plan to enjoy multiple keyword integration.
But Rank Math SEO allows you to optimize your content to rank using as many as 5 keywords for…. Wait for it…. FREE!
There is no point paying for one SEO plugin when you can get the same results (and more) via another plugin.
If you only have a single keyword in mind, Rank Math automatically starts suggesting related keywords (including longtail ones) depending on Google suggestions, although it doesn’t give details such as competition, search volume, etc.
Yoast SEO doesn’t make provision for all these. You may need another online tool to give keyword ideas.
This is another advantage Rank Math has over Yoast, but one that not a lot of people are utilizing.
For those who don’t know what schema.org is, it is where you can find schema markup, which is a type of data. When you add it to a webpage, the description that appears in the search results is enhanced. It is otherwise known as a rich snippet.
Schema.org was created in 2011 when Google, Yandex, Bing, and Yahoo collaborated.
Although there is no direct evidence that microdata affects search rankings, rich snippets help your webpages to become more prominent and visible on search result pages, which will then enhance click-through rates.
If you haven’t incorporated it yet, don’t fret. Studies have shown that only one-third of Google or Bing’s search results have a rich snippet (including Schema.org) markup. This is a great chance for people to take advantage of it early.
Now, Rank Math provides a great schema platform for any content that you wish to put on your site. It comes as an all-in-one tool to help you fully optimize your content.
But Yoast doesn’t give you any of that. There is no provision for schema.org anywhere. If you use Yoast, you have to install another plugin to integrate schema.org.
It’s more convenient to install a plugin that handles both functions than install two plugins separately.
Integration of Google Search Console
It’s easier to monitor Google Search Console with Rank Math SEO than Yoast SEO.
Before I proceed, what does the Google Search Console do?
It’s a Google service that allows online service providers to track, maintain, and troubleshoot their site’s visibility in the SERPs. You mustn’t sign up for Google Console for your site to be included in the search results, but it just helps you understand how your site works and enhance how Google sees it.
Google Search Console offers tools and reports for cases like checking if Google can crawl your site, tracking Google’s search traffic data, receiving notifications when Google sees issues like spamming, revealing sites that are linked to yours, troubleshooting problems for mobile visibility, etc.
It can be used by anyone with a website, from web developers, content creators, business owners, SEO specialists, marketers, site administrators, etc.
First off, setting up Google Search Console on both plugins are very different. In Rank Math, all you need to do is input your Gmail account details and verify it, and almost immediately, it will retrieve your website’s Search Console data and show you directly on your WordPress dashboard.
Yoast supports Google Search Console Integration but setting up involves lots of steps that are not beginner-friendly. Plus, you can’t track your Search Console data directly from the WordPress dashboard using Yoast.
SEO Audit Tool
The job of an SEO audit is simple- it analyzes your website’s performance and presence, and how it relates to best practices. SEO audits usually show
- Technical and on-page SEO problems (status codes, redirects, page speed, URL structure, canonical tags, mobile and international SEO analysis, crawlability, duplication, XML sitemap, keyword research, structure of site content, schema, internal linking, etc.)
- Issues associated with website structures
- Lurking off-site issues
- UX problems
- Gaps in content management and potential opportunities.
It’s so important to regularly audit your website because it’s the home of your online presence or brand. As long as contents are fed in at various time intervals and tweaks are made, critical problems will always arise. So, it shouldn’t be left dormant.
Think of SEO auditing for your website as a health checkup.
Popular tools used to audit websites include SEMrush, Google Search Console, Google Analytics, SERP simulator, Google PageSpeed Insights, Data Testing Tool, Copyscape, etc.
Rank Math has its special SEO Audit Tool that’s integrated directly to the WordPress dashboard. However, it may not give you specific and updated details compared to using premium tools like SEMrush or Google Analytics, but the data provided is very useful and actionable.
Yoast, on the other hand, doesn’t make provisions for that. You have to employ a premium third-party tool to do the site audit.
As a beginner choosing an SEO plugin, you have to choose one that offers the right technical support.
There may be a lot of things you’re not conversant with. The right technical support should also be on standby to help you scale you through.
But this is the problem. Yoast only offers 24/7 premium support to users on its premium plan. For those on its free plan, they only have a large database of FAQs to resolve most issues, and a blog to explain normal trends and fixtures. But specific problems can’t be handled by their team unless you upgrade.
It’s like attending to everyone but giving special attention to the richest kid on the block!
Rank Math, on the other hand, is neutral. It is one of the most recent SEO plugins on WordPress so it’s sure to have minor bugs and issues now and then.
Its interface isn’t typical so users may have slight issues navigating through things like integrating Google Search Console, previewing cards for Twitter and Facebook, or site redirection.
But it has a 24/7 technical support team that’s ready to guide you every step of the way. It’s active, very responsive, and resolves your problems faster than any other SEO plugin would, especially Yoast.
This is another case of focusing more attention on the rich kid on the block.
Redirect Managers are so important, and it’s not something to be enjoyed by a privileged few. Before I explain what a redirect manager is, let’s look at why a redirect happens.
A redirect occurs when a URL is either changed or deleted, and another URL is given to the browser in exchange. If a website owner deletes or changes a page and doesn’t redirect the previous page, people that visit that page will see a 404 error message.
So, you need a redirect to send visitors to another relevant page.
There are several reasons for a redirect
- When moving a domain
- If you change HTTP to HTTPS
- If you delete a page or post
- If you change the URL
- If you re-edit the slug
Furthermore, if you incorporate external and internal links to your website for improved user experience and SEO but they generate 404 error messages because the links are removed or broken, it needs a redirect.
If it continues like this, visitors will be discouraged to explore your site and lead to increased bounce rates. But all these can be solved with a redirect manager.
Both Yoast and Rank Math SEO have powerful redirect managers. But Rank Math offers its own for free, whereas Yoast SEO offers it on the premium plan.
- XML Sitemap
Enough with the lambasting! Yoast SEO has its good sides too (that are free)
When it comes to XML sitemaps, both Rank Math and Yoast are good to go.
As a beginner, you may be wondering, “What do XML Sitemaps do?”
They aren’t as complicated as they sound or appear. They’re simply an inventory of your website’s URLs, so they serve as roadmaps that show search engines what content is available and within their reach.
They are so important because every website owner wants Google to crawl all important pages on their site. But the pages may end up being without any internal links, making it more difficult to find.
XML sitemaps stand in the gap and list all important pages not only for Google to crawl them but also to help you understand the structure of your website.
Most people feel that XML sitemaps only benefit large websites, those with large archives, rich content, or recent websites with few internal links. But that’s not the case. XML sitemaps benefit ALL websites, regardless of their size, structure, or the amount of traffic they have.
All important pages on every website deserve to be found on Google, and both Rank Math and Yoast help you to produce XML sitemaps with one click. There are no hassles whatsoever.
Which would you prefer- an SEO plugin that analyses content on a general scale or one that analyzes content in detail?
You’d most likely go for the latter.
When it comes to analyzing content for SEO, Rank Math is not only better than Yoast but most SEO plugins. When you install either plugins and create content on WordPress, both of them analyze the content from the post editor and recommend what you should change to enhance SEO score.
Yoast SEO analyzes content generally from two main parts- SEO and Readability. In the SEO section, once you’ve done the major work, you’d see a green smiley indicating that your content is good to go without emphasizing on the little details. As long as the main work is done, it doesn’t have a problem.
But Rank Math handles it differently, and in the right way. First, it gives you a grade from 0 to 100, so at every point, you are graded on how well your posts are optimized. It will be easier to judge based on your efforts than what the SEO plugin thinks is right.
Plus, it also gives clear and actionable recommendations to enhance your SEO score.
This is so important especially for beginners because they need to establish their online presence soon enough, and they won’t achieve that if they think their SEO score is great.
Video and Image SEO
When you add alt texts or meta descriptions to videos or images, you use these media files as an avenue to attract organic traffic to your website.
Note: Alt texts is short for alternative texts and are otherwise known as alt attributes, alt tags, or alt descriptions. They describe the function of a video or image in a text. While meta descriptions describe briefly what the page is all about. All WordPress SEO plugins make it easy for users to input them directly from the admin area for each page or post on the website.
Now both Rank Math and Yoast make provisions for image SEO functionalities. But when it comes to video SEO, Rank Math allows for Video Rich Snippets that can attract organic traffic and enhance overall traffic inflow.
Yoast SEO has more advanced functionalities for videos but they are locked away in its premium version.
So, there you have it, ladies and gentlemen!
Based on these comparisons, Rank Math SEO clearly has an amazing collection of features that can enhance your SEO game. Most of these functionalities are also available with Yoast SEO but they are locked away in its premium plan.