Lesson 10: Readability and the Yoast SEO plugin – SEO for beginners training

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This video is part of the free SEO for beginners training course by Yoast Academy. Find the complete training at In the SEO for beginners training course, we explain the very basics of SEO. The training features videos, reading materials and quizzes to help you practise actual SEO skills. You’ll receive an official certificate and discounts to our other training courses after completion.

Readability is important! Luckily, Yoast SEO can help you with writing readable content. The Yoast SEO plugin offers a readability analysis. You can find this readability analysis in the Yoast SEO metabox, which is situated on the 6 pages and posts editor screens. The readability analysis is shown in Image 2 on the next page. The readability analysis uses an algorithm to determine how readable your post is. It features several checks that’ll give you advice when you write your post. By following the advice, you can make your text easier to read and understand. Readability checks Yoast SEO uses the following checks to give you feedback on the readability of your text:

● Transition words: Do you use transition words like ‘most importantly’, ‘because’, ‘therefore’ or ‘besides’ to craft a coherent text? Using these words improves the flow of your article as they provide hints to the reader about what is coming next.
● Sentence beginnings: Do any of your consecutive sentences start with the same word? This can quickly become repetitive and annoying. Always mix up your sentences to keep your article readable and free of obstacles.
● Flesch reading ease: This world-famous test analyzes texts and grades them on a scale from 1-100. The lower the score, the more difficult to read the text is. Texts with a very high Flesch reading ease score (about 100) are very easy to read.
● Paragraph length: Some people tend to use extremely long paragraphs. Doing so makes your text look daunting, as it becomes just one big blob of text. Break it up, use shorter paragraphs and insert subheadings.
● Sentence length: Sentence length is one of the core issues that make a text hard to read. If your sentences are too long – over 20 words – people might lose track of your point.
● Passive voice: Using a lot of passive voice in your text makes it appear distant, and your message will be less clear. Your sentences become wordy and hard to grasp because readers have to work harder to understand the sentence structure.

Yoast Academy is the online learning platform for SEO by the makers of the biggest SEO plugin for WordPress: Yoast SEO. Our online SEO training courses teach you vital SEO skills you can apply at once. We have training courses on keyword research, SEO copywriting, technical SEO, structured data, site structure, our own Yoast SEO for WordPress plugin, and more. They are developed by world class SEOs and education experts trusted by the world’s biggest brands. Whether you’re a blogger, developer, online marketeer, or own a business, big or small: we believe in SEO for everyone.
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