Two WordPress SEO Plugins you should NOT be using

I was reading my backlog of feeds just now, and came across a couple of updated WordPress SEO plugins aimed at improving your site’s SEO. Some people are just plain ^%$#*& stupid, I’m sorry to say.

Let me show you what got me so wound up:

#1 Canonical Link Plugin

This Canonical Link plugin consists of the following code:

function canonicalink() {
  $request_uri = parse_url($_SERVER['REQUEST_URI'],PHP_URL_PATH);
  echo "<link rel="canonical" 
    href="http://{$_SERVER['HTTP_HOST']}{$request_uri}" />";
}

add_action('wp_head','canonicalink',1,1);

If you know PHP, you can see what it does: it parses the current URL, strips out URL variables (if you’ve got any) and displays the current URL as the canonical link element. Of course the easy way would have been to do this:

function canonicallink() {
  global $post;
  echo '<link rel="canonical" href="'.get_permalink($post->ID).'"/>';
}

This would not rely on the current URL being ok, because it doesn’t necessarily have to be. This would have been a better solution. Were it not for one simple thing: WordPress does this by freaking DEFAULT. Check out rel_canonical if you don’t believe me. It was added in WordPress 2.9. Why this get’s me wound up? Because the plugin author updated his plugin today, and updated the readme.txt to tell everyone that the plugin is compatible with WordPress 2.9.2. That’s just bloody stupid.

Ow yeah I do have a canonical plugin myself, it allows you to set a different canonical URL for a post, quite useful, actually :)

#2 All in One Webmaster

This plugin allows you to do things that other SEO plugin which is not “All in One” either, with or without a premium option, has been lacking for years. While it’s not as stupid as #1, the features might actually be useful to some people, I hate the fact that people call their stuff “All in One” when they’re obviously not.

Bonus #3: All in one SEO pack

All in one SEO is not bad. It’s just not “all in one” either. And it has a feature I loathe: automatic generation of meta descriptions. If he’d remove that feature I might actually not diss his plugin all the time :)

Confession: I’m looking into all these because I’m working on a new SEO plugin myself. Stay tuned for more info on that.

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115 Responses

  1. Frank EdensBy Frank Edens on 31 May, 2010

    You are working on a new SEO plugin for yourself? Great!
    Looking forward to it, becease most of the plugins are not complete 100% SEO covered.
    There are some plugins you can combine, but then you have the risk of ‘overusage’ of SEO :)

    Greetz,
    Frank Edens

  2. OzhBy Ozh on 31 May, 2010

    The first plugin is even stupider than you first thought: parsing the URL and cutting the query off will transform site.com/?p=123 into site.com/
    Now that’s serious SEO :)

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 31 May, 2010

      hehehe that’s true, and indeed bloody stupid. He does say, in his “defense”, that you should be setting permalink to /%postname%/ in the settings in his readme.

  3. Jeff SebringBy Jeff Sebring on 31 May, 2010

    Headspace is a killer SEO plugin. I found it thanks to Joost here. It has a crazy amount of options.

    I think Joost mentions how he doesn’t use All in One SEO just about once a week on his podcast lol.

    Cheers

    • Luis NengBy Luis Neng on 2 June, 2010

      I agree, headspace rocks :)

  4. Mitch Canter [studionashvegas]By Mitch Canter [studionashvegas] on 31 May, 2010

    I don’t mind AIOSEO – I’ve tried Platinum and had less success with it, but to some people it’s all they need (re: all they understand or care about). I do think the All-In-One aspect may be more allegorical to “it does a crap load of stuff” than “all encompassing” – which it does do a “crap load” of stuff, so I’m cool with that.

    I can’t wait, however, to see what you come up with – I love seeing plugin author’s take the shortcomings from one plugin and eliminate them – that’s what makes better open source code, after all.

  5. iseoBy iseo on 31 May, 2010

    Firstly, I love your plugins so far! so am looking forward to a solution from you. I also do not like all in one seo, but helps me fix the pesky title tags in buddypress, so I only use it for buddypress sites right now. speaking of which, how hard would your breadcrumbs for buddypress be to make? looking forward to your seo plugin! ps, quix is great!

  6. AlexBy Alex on 31 May, 2010

    I’ve been using AIOSEO for over a year now. I have had very good results with this plugin and even upgraded to the Pro version.

    However, after reading your post I’m a bit concerned about your disdain for the meta descriptions.

    Is it because you do not think they should be auto-generated; or is it because you think they should not be created period (manually or auto-generated)?

    I ask because I want to make sure I’m making the best decision for my client’s sites. I know that SEO is constantly evolving and that it’s very important to stay abreast of the latest tactics.

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 31 May, 2010

      They SHOULD be created (and AIOSEO is good for that) just NOT auto-generated.

      • AlexBy Alex on 31 May, 2010

        (-: OK, makes a lot of sense now! Thanks.

        Also, *love* your breadcrumbs plugin. Simple and very effective.

      • TerenceBy Terence on 7 June, 2010

        Joost, you know what your problem is? Its the same as mine, or most people for that matter. You think everyone’s running the same kind of site as yours. What about all the affiliate stores that run on a product feed from Amazon or Datefeedr for example? Are you going to tell us you’re going to sit there and hand craft the meta-descriptions, tags etc for every one of the thousands of products as they arrive, and before they get indexed? I’m no champion of AIOSEO, in fact these days I don’t even use it, but I think you’re being a tad hard on the product. It does a good job.

        • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 7 June, 2010

          I’m not saying you should never auto generate descriptions: you can very well do that if you have variables to base that description on. Generating a description based on the first line of text of an article is just stupid.

          For your info: I do SEO as a trade, even for some fortune 500 companies. Most of the sites I work with these days have more than 1 million indexed pages. I know what I’m doing. I don’t expect anyone to use his site the same way I do.

          • TerenceBy Terence on 7 June, 2010

            I’m really looking forward to your alternative SEO solution. Is it due out soon or are you just testing to see if folks are interested before you write anything? Either way, it sounds like you’ve got the right goal(s) squarely in your sights, and you’re not just going to role all your current plugins up into one.

            And for your info: even brain surgeons make mistakes.

  7. surfvoucherBy surfvoucher on 31 May, 2010

    Yes the all in one seo plugin isn’t going to take care of the entire SEO but it is the most complete on site SEO package available in wordpress. It isn’t going to do the SEO for you but no software can do that properly, so I can’t see why you would include it in your list of plugins not to be used.

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 31 May, 2010

      it is the most complete on site SEO package available in wordpress

      That’s about to change :) (and HeadSpace2 is more complete).

      • RamoonusBy Ramoonus on 1 June, 2010

        But Headspace is harder to configure

  8. TradiArtBy TradiArt on 31 May, 2010

    Thank you Joost for your advice.

    What do you think about HeadSpace2? I think it is the best!!

    Will your plugin be a replacement for HeadSpace2 or will they work together?

    Thank you for the great news!

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 31 May, 2010

      It will replace that and about 10 others.

      • TradiArtBy TradiArt on 31 May, 2010

        ..amazing… looking forward to test it! :-)

      • Cor van NoorloosBy Cor van Noorloos on 2 June, 2010

        Hello Joost,

        Looking very much forward to your new SEO add-on. Can you tell yet if it will replace your current SEO add-ons as well?
        And, as it’s not available yet, do you suggest all of your current add-ons ready for WordPress 3.0?

      • stevoBy stevo on 7 June, 2010

        I am interested to see your seo plugin. But with the piss-poor support you have given your other plugins I will probably stay with headspace 2.

        • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 7 June, 2010

          Well stevo, it’s one of the reasons why this plugin will merge about 6 of mine: it’s neigh to impossible to keep up with support requests AND get some normal work done.

          As you know I don’t make money off of these plugins at the moment, and that makes it impossible for me to spend all my time on supporting these. It’s comments like yours, that are at best meant as positive feedback (that was what you were trying to say with “piss-poor support right? ;) ), that make me think I should be taking another route with my SEO plugin.

  9. LeonBy Leon on 31 May, 2010

    Hey, I’m not sure the AIOSEO auto description generator is too bad. Obviously it’s better to do it manually via the AIOSEO options on each new post but if you’re stuck for time surely the first few lines from the post will do for a description? This is a Google tactic too after all..

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 31 May, 2010

      The meta description is not used for ranking. I repeat: it’s NOT used for ranking. The reason it’s important is that it’s the two lines people read when they see your search result in the search engines. It should contain your primary keyword because that get’s bolded in the search results and thus makes you stand out a bit more if people search for that primary keyword.

      Next to that it should tell people why to keep reading. The first 160 chars of most posts don’t do that, that’s why auto generation is crap. If you want to read more, my friend Aaron Wall has a good post on it.

      • LeonBy Leon on 31 May, 2010

        I aggree with all that but I’m just wondering does it make enough of a difference to bother with..

        • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 1 June, 2010

          Well my thinking is that, if you agree that bad auto generation like that doesn’t work, you’d be better off NOT having a meta description than a poor auto generated one.

  10. HeshamBy Hesham on 1 June, 2010

    I actually stopped using All in one SEO pack since long time back on my main blog, I have managed to use Thesis Theme belt in SEO features! Also Thesis has a Canonical Link option as well, so… I am not sure if I am going to use your coming plugin on my main blog, but maybe on my other non Thesis blogs!

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 1 June, 2010

      This’ll even do more than Thesis built in stuff, so I reckon if you use it elsewhere you might want to use it on your Thesis blogs too, but we’ll see :)

      • HeshamBy Hesham on 1 June, 2010

        This is good to know, I don’t mind to try it when it’s ready!

      • TerenceBy Terence on 7 June, 2010

        You’re going to have to pull some heck of an enormous rabbit out of that hat of yours Josst if you’re going to provide better SEO than Thesis out of the box, AND improve on Thesis too. You’ll probably need a Thesis button that people running Thesis can switch on, and that turn 90% of your plugin off… 8^)

        • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 7 June, 2010

          Hehe you so overestimate Thesis :) It’s good, but not THAT good.

          • TerenceBy Terence on 10 June, 2010

            I don’t think I do. 1.7 is very buggy and a lot of things just will not work right. In comparison with 1.6., which is cool, 1.7 has a lot of new hooks and the way it loads a page if totally different than in 1.6. It is a nice try from Chris, in fact an excellent try, but is not quite right yet.

  11. Felix Albutra @ Blogging AccessBy Felix Albutra @ Blogging Access on 1 June, 2010

    Wew… I can’t say anything after I read this post. I don’t have a background on PHP but I will try to have a research and study about it.

    I used the new Canonical plugin, should I edit the settings on it?

    - Felix Albutra

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 1 June, 2010

      No, it’s only useful if you want to set a canonical link for a post that is NOT the permalink for the post itself. For instance if you post an article on two blogs and want to make one the “canonical” version.

  12. Jim WestergrenBy Jim Westergren on 1 June, 2010

    Hi Joost, I look forward to see your plugin. With your knowledge on the subject it looks very promising. My article on SEO for wordpress from 2005, revised 2007 needs to be updated as well. At that time there was no SEO plugins .. :)

  13. Prabhu RamBy Prabhu Ram on 1 June, 2010

    I am not able to view your RSS feed URL. Can you please help me?

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 1 June, 2010

      Are you redirected properly to feedburner.com?

  14. Dave DurbinBy Dave Durbin on 1 June, 2010

    Got to say Thanks. Ever since I was looking for a blogging platform the first time I have been an avid reader and have learned a bunch. I currently use multiple plugins you have written and some you have recommended, canonical url’s, clean slugs, robots meta, and Headspace2. Will the new plugin replace most of these on the SEO end? It would lighten the load on the server I’m sure.

  15. seoshnegBy seoshneg on 1 June, 2010

    Thank you for the great news!

  16. DezBy Dez on 1 June, 2010

    Do you have any problems with AIOSEO beyond the autogenerated meta descriptions? It seems a little odd to me to make such a big deal about an optional feature that can be disabled with a simple little checkbox. Am I misunderstanding something?

  17. RamoonusBy Ramoonus on 1 June, 2010

    How much will your plugin cost?

  18. Scott HendisonBy Scott Hendison on 1 June, 2010

    Wow Joost, it’s not often you go on the attack!

    Since All in One SEO offers the ability to add a custom description tag for every page or post, I see nothing wrong whatsoever with having an auto generated description based on the first 160 characters of text.

    Do I agree that people should write a better description tag in the provided option box? Well sure, but for some people (i.e. MANY people) it’s simply unrealistic, since in many cases you can barely get clients to write new content at all.

    The auto generated one is always going to be unique, and more often than not, it’s going to be highly relevant to what’s written on the page.

    Personally, I generally try to write my first couple of sentences with a bit of a hook to grab someone’s attention anyway, so the auto generated snippet by AIOSEO is fine.

    That said, would it be nice if there were an option to turn off the autogenerated description? I suppose so, but I doubt I would use it much.

    I’m really looking forward to seeing what you’ve got coming but I go hope you’re going to have an OPTION of using an auto generated description tag if we want to. If not, I think it’s going to be a hard sell to many SEO’s…

    Keep up the great work!

    • AnttiBy Antti on 2 June, 2010

      Yeah, I didn’t get this part either from All in One SEO: “it has a feature I loathe: automatic generation of meta descriptions.” – why is that bad? And since it’s an option on the plugin = can disable it at any time, I’m not sure why you “attack” it :)

      And even with the option on, as the plugin’s help says: “META descriptions will get autogenerated if there’s no excerpt” – I manually write meta descriptions for all posts, so they are not autogenerated, but if I don’t happen to write an manual excerpt, the first letters go in, which is better than nothing, no?

      …good post otherwise, which is why I stick to plugins I know and trust – and can’t wait to see what you cook up Joost on the SEO plugin front :)

      • DemetrisBy Demetris on 2 June, 2010

        It is bad because it may harm click-through ratio.

        I have only seen one report so far that this happened in actual practice, but it was based on a VERY large test base.

        The theory is this: If you have a meta description, a search engine will probably use it instead of putting together its own snippet. Now, if your description is just the first few words of your page, it is very likely that a good engine would put together a much better snippet for your content. So, your click-through ratio will suffer.

        Cheers!

    • AJ KohnBy AJ Kohn on 13 June, 2010

      I use AIOSEO but simply don’t (strike that – never) use the auto-generation meta description feature. It’s turned off.

      I just don’t see this optional feature as a reason to ding the plugin. I’m not saying you can’t build a better mousetrap but … I think criticism based on this one optional feature is strange.

      It’s a user based decision not a plugin flaw IMO.

  19. Joaquin PoggiBy Joaquin Poggi on 1 June, 2010

    What you think of this plug in “platinum-seo-pack” ? I’am going to tried this today.

    http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/platinum-seo-pack/

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 7 June, 2010

      It’s got some very good code in it, that was copied straight from Robots Meta :) Honestly though: it’s quite good, but it too lacks a lot of features an SEO plugin needs.

  20. SEO NotinghamBy SEO Notingham on 1 June, 2010

    Great post – was looking at the All in One Webmaster plugin today and after reading this decided to leave it alone – thanks!

    • MosheBy Moshe on 7 June, 2010

      Why ignore it – because it has a bad name? Just ask yourself – does it help you and your site or not. If it does, use it, if not don’t use it.

      NOTE – I have NO affiliation with this plugin at all.

  21. Arjan SnaterseBy Arjan Snaterse on 2 June, 2010

    There is a reason though, to have a separate canonical plugin (however this one is very bad indeed :) ) The redirect_canonical functions contains also the redirect_guess_404_permalink function which searches for a relevant post/page when it gets a 404. And can be a very annoying feature :)

    Unfortunately it is not possible to only diable the redirect_guess_404_permalink on itself, so you have to disable the whole redirect_canonical function. And in that case a separate canonical plugin would be handy :)

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 2 June, 2010

      True, but redirect_canonical and rel_canonical are not that related though ;)

  22. Arjan SnaterseBy Arjan Snaterse on 2 June, 2010

    ah, shoot! Typed the whole comment for nothing ;)

  23. Dane MorganBy Dane Morgan on 2 June, 2010

    Two Words. UrbanGiraffe.com. Okay it’s only one word when you say it like that, but John’s HeadSpace plugin is simply the best SEO package you’ll likely find, and it didn’t even start out as an SEO plugin. It does SEO and so much more. http://urbangiraffe.com/plugins/headspace2/

  24. Damian SmithBy Damian Smith on 2 June, 2010

    Hey.

    Nice to see what other people think of all the seo plugins available for WordPress. I currently use the All-In-One seo pack and serves me quite well. But I’m intrigued as to what HeadSpace2 can offer that the all-in-one plugin can’t.

    I generally use starkers and use my own designs with it so having the custom themes for every page doesn’t appeal to me, and can’t really see much more than the all in one package doesn’t have.
    I may have missed a few things but if anyone could give a quick run down of the benefits to HeadSpace2 over all-in-one that would be great!

    I’m not that great at PHP either so would want to know how easy it is to configure etc.

    Thanks for the post

  25. Christian KoppBy Christian Kopp on 2 June, 2010

    fully agree your opinion.

    the best seo plugin for WordPress seems wpSEO for me. ( http://www.wpseo.de/ )

  26. Web DesignBy Web Design on 2 June, 2010

    Just wait for your new plugin, though I am still using All in One SEO Pack, I might change it if I find something worthy.

  27. archshrkBy archshrk on 2 June, 2010

    So if I don’t need to use a different canonical URL for a post, I don’t need your plugin (with WP 2.9)?

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 2 June, 2010

      Indeed :)

      • archshrkBy archshrk on 2 June, 2010

        Thanks. i only have one post that is used on two different sites and one is clearly recognized as the conical url. So in the interest of reducing the number of plugins used, i’ll remove this one. I am looking forward to your new plugin as they have all been great so far (even if I don’t use them all)

  28. AlexBy Alex on 2 June, 2010

    Try out wpSEO at http://wpseo.org and you won’t have any of these problems.

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 2 June, 2010

      That’s better than most, but still not complete :)

  29. DaveBy Dave on 2 June, 2010

    Thanks – I use all in one seo pack but I never really paid attention to what it does :( Looking over the description now, it looks like it’s all about the meta tags. I eagerly await your plugin.

  30. DavidBy David on 2 June, 2010

    I can’t help but be sceptical of this post, and think it’s been used to get people talking about your future seo plugin. There’s nothing wrong with all in seo.

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 2 June, 2010

      I think people underestimate the wrongness of wrong default settings. More than 90% of users will never touch those defaults, that’s why i keep hammering that it’s not a good solution. It’s what my friend Sebastian calls Plug & Pray SEO, and it simply doesn’t work like that.

      • TerenceBy Terence on 11 June, 2010

        I disagree. I don’t think they understand, which is quite a different thing. And just saying that they’re all crap doesn’t help anyone learn what you already found out.

  31. geoDVBy geoDV on 2 June, 2010

    Yoast, will you provide a tutorial for your SEO plugin or is just plain simple that anyone can figure it out.
    Great job on it and on the wordpress podcast too.

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 2 June, 2010

      not really willing to get into too much detail yet, but it’ll be amply documented.

      • DaveBy Dave on 2 June, 2010

        I’d be happy to do a tutorial of it on my video podcast :)

        • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 2 June, 2010

          Now that is the kind of stuff I love to hear, I’ll be in touch Dave :)

          • DaveBy Dave on 4 June, 2010

            Cool, just use the contact details at teachmewp.com

  32. John GarrettBy John Garrett on 2 June, 2010

    Hey Joost,

    will your plugin allow you to add in the thumbnail image link tag recommended by Facebook for the ‘Share’ feature? (I have read your recent stuff about the Facebook privacy issue, btw)

    ie “”

    I was looking through a bunch of these SEO plugins hoping to find one. It’s not really SEO obviously but it would be nice if it were in there.

    Honestly, my site seems to share fine without it but I’d like to be able to control it if necessary. I’m not 100% on WP just yet, so I’m not always sure what’s what…

  33. MarkBy Mark on 2 June, 2010

    This plugin is useful….
    Google Video Sitemap

  34. John GarrettBy John Garrett on 2 June, 2010

    whoops link tag code was probably rendered. this is what I meant:

    [link rel="image_src" href="thumbnail_image" / ]

  35. IlyaBy Ilya on 3 June, 2010

    Can’t wait for a better SEO plugin with your approval :). How come btw WordPress ‘themselves’ aren’t bettering the core with all these seo features? Anyways; I thought you could turn the automatic meta description off in the All in one SEO?

    Take care!

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 7 June, 2010

      You can turn it off, it’s just a default setting that is never disabled on 90% of blogs that install it.

  36. FlamingphoenixBy Flamingphoenix on 3 June, 2010

    Looking forward to this plugin! Really enjoy reading your blog too, given me some great tips.

  37. BrettBy Brett on 3 June, 2010

    Joost, your plugins are excellent, and I enjoy reading your blog. But this particular post is beneath you. You don’t need to insult other people to prove that you’re smart. If you really take issues with these plugins, contact the authors so that they can make improvements. Remember, even though you’re on the internet, people on the other end still have feelings.

    PS: In firefox 3.6.3, this textarea comment box has its’ inner content flowing beyond the right boundary.

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 3 June, 2010

      Hi Brett,

      you think higher of me than you should :) To be honest, I want people googling for these plugins to find this and decide to use something else :)
      Cheers
      Joost

  38. Yuri ElkaimBy Yuri Elkaim on 3 June, 2010

    I use seo “all in one” and find it pretty helpful. I little buggy depending on the blog theme but overall pretty good.

  39. Rick SamaraBy Rick Samara on 4 June, 2010

    Joost,

    This is a totally cutting-edge discussion and I have to give you credit for generating so many
    inputs. And, this is the very first time I’ve ever seen anything negative on All in One SEO.

    Personally, I use Platinum SEO… and have become comfortable with it.

    I agree with virtually anything said about “seo not being automatic.” I’ve used several themes ‘
    which seen to conflict with my SEO efforts. I guess my bottom line is that whatever one uses, you
    to continously test and review it’s effects on SEO.

    I signed up for your updates, and look forward to learning more!

    Rick Samara

  40. JayBy Jay on 5 June, 2010

    Question: I started using the Ultimate SEO plugin instead of All-in-one… It has a canonical url option which I assume is redundant?

    Oh, I’m getting some funky CSS issues with your comment box, is it just me? I can type outside of the margin by about 5 characters.

  41. VlatkoBy Vlatko on 5 June, 2010

    I think you’re wrong on this one. AIOSEO is the most comprehensive SEO plug-in out there. Auto-generated descriptions are not fixed option for this plug-in. You can allow them or not if you wish. Also you can craft yours if you want. Having said that this plug-in does not belong in this short list of yours.

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 7 June, 2010

      Well we can at least agree to disagree :)

  42. JesseBy Jesse on 6 June, 2010

    Everyone can calm down, he doesn’t think AIOSEO is crap, he just said its not perfect… this post is serving its purpose of being “link bait” and stirring up some discussion as it was intended to… The thing that needs to be remembered though is that when you cast stones at other peoples houses you better get some boards for your own windows when the time comes because if the plugin you are working on isn’t all your saying it will be you can bet the rocks will come right back…

    Also, Jay, it’s not just you… the comment box has been jacked for quite some time…

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 7 June, 2010

      Hehe I am raising the bar, I know, and I’ll try to raise it a bit more :D

  43. noahjohnsonBy noahjohnson on 7 June, 2010

    I don’t use canonical, but I use All in One SEO, as many people refer to it. Actually, I don’t know how the SEO work.

  44. JasonBy Jason on 7 June, 2010

    I don’t use AIOSEO Plugin, and i always use custom fields to write a succinct and unique blurb on client sites. I do enjoy the cage rattling and am eager to see the claws come out with the backlash, if nothign else you have me now entertained and tuned in for the ‘storm in a teacup’ that is coming.

    It is hilarious that the canonical plugin exists and has been updated! I eagerly await some geniuses ‘blogging’ plugin for WordPress.

  45. SEO Consultant AustraliaBy SEO Consultant Australia on 7 June, 2010

    I’m looking forward to your SEO plug-in (in short). I’m also really impressed that you’ve gone to the trouble of investigating the other SEO plug-ins available. Most are the best of a bad bunch (unfortunately).

    Ray Baker

  46. Alex NewellBy Alex Newell on 7 June, 2010

    Nice to see a bit of a punch up about plugins!

    I love your phrase “Plug & Pray SEO,” hehe!

    Any idea of a date Joost for your plugin?

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 7 June, 2010

      Not really yet, though it won’t be 6 months :)

  47. AnthonyBy Anthony on 7 June, 2010

    Joost,

    This is first comment on your site.

    I would like to get a professional about an SEO plugin I have been using. Have not heard to much about it so I thought I ask.

    It called Greg’s High Powered SEO.

    If anyone has heard of this and some opinions please share it here.

  48. AnthonyBy Anthony on 7 June, 2010

    Correction, that was Gregs High Performance SEO plugin.

  49. Edward NigmaBy Edward Nigma on 7 June, 2010

    Thanks, that is a very useful info =) I hate those plugins that promise to give all solutions in one pack.

  50. Chris SchryerBy Chris Schryer on 7 June, 2010

    Hey Joost,
    Way to stir the pot. Can’t wait for the new plug-in. All-in-one has been running on all my blogs (though I must admit, it took me a while to realize the problems with the auto-generated desc), but I would like something a bit more robust.
    I’d be happy to help test when the time comes.
    C

  51. Janice - The FItness CheerleaderBy Janice - The FItness Cheerleader on 7 June, 2010

    I’m currently using AIO SEO but am going to sit on the edge of my seat until your new plugin is released. Do you have an email waiting/notify list I can sign up for? Or will you do an announcement here on your blog that will be fed into mailchimp (which I already subscribe to)?

  52. MosheBy Moshe on 7 June, 2010

    I don’t understand, you are telling people not to use a plugin because you personally do not like the use of the term All in One — even though “the features might actually be useful to some people”.

    That seems like an extremely weak reason to tell people that they shouldn’t use a plugin. If you want, write an article about the Top 10 Plugin In Names That You Can’t Stand – keep it to your own personally opinion, but don’t recommend to people that they don’t use a plugin which may HELP THEM because you personally don’t like the name.

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 7 June, 2010

      Moshe, I tell them not to not only because of the bad naming, but also because of the fact that it has crap default settings.

      • TerenceBy Terence on 8 June, 2010

        Joost, when I read that, I realized why your post got my back up and, as I can see now, more than one or two others. And given that there will also be more than a few who would have disliked your post, but never would reply, lets say constructively, there may be quite a few that would agree with this comment.

        I think, or at least I hope its generally recognized that over the years, you have given and shared a huge amount with the WP community. So in that context, I think they would have been expecting and looked to you as an authority to write something like, “this plugin xyz has silly name (for whatever reason), but if you change the default settings to yada yada yada it will do a half decent job for you”. And then go on to talk about your future product and why it will be so much better.

        The way you’ve written it, it just looks like you’re spoiling their pitch without offering anything positive except ‘the perfect SEO plugin’ (yeah, right), some time in the future.

        This post is really out of character for you.

        • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 8 June, 2010

          It might be out of what you expected from me, but I can assure it’s quite in line with my character ;-)

          I have talked about the fact that these default settings are crap for ages, and have communicated that with the developer in the past as well, so I think I’ve given them ample enough time to fix it. If you build a plugin that is used by more than 1 million people, you have a certain responsibility to set the defaults right.

          • TerenceBy Terence on 8 June, 2010

            Well, there no reason why any blog post shouldn’t be controversial, of course, in fact many so called ‘gurus’ recommend it, but I think my point still stands. You could have been more constructive, less destructive, shared with and helped even more people, and still have made your point by telling folks what the author’s of those plugins have so far failed to do. That would have been a much more powerful argument and would have put your comments in context, rather than having them appear like a case of competitor bashing.

            Its your blog, you can do what you want with it, of course.

          • Dave DoolinBy Dave Doolin on 11 June, 2010

            Yeah, I’m a little surprised myself, Joost… but if this is in character for you, I’m cool with that. Speaking as someone who let a little character out a few days ago… and got some scorching back.

            I just have to be honest, I’m a former Marine like Michael Torbert, so when you go crap all over AIO, I’m not gonna like it.

            Ok, raise the bar, man.

  53. Chris NomandBy Chris Nomand on 9 June, 2010

    Thanks for the very helpful information!

  54. Chet PayneBy Chet Payne on 11 June, 2010

    Wow this is a great blog and extremely informative!

  55. PaulBy Paul on 15 June, 2010

    There is a lot of mention of the new pluggin you are working on in these comments. I am looking forward to it. I am just setting up another new blog with 2.9.2 I am wondering though about your advice in regards to Headspace and 2.9.2. Seems quite a number of people have been experiencing problems. Should I just go ahead and use it, find an alternative, or wait for what you are working on?

  56. SharonBy Sharon on 15 June, 2010

    This message comes from a woman who knew nothing about html or php 18 months ago. Thanks, in large part to this blog, I have a site that is in the Alexa top 100k. I appreciate what it is like to offer so much for free and have so few people make donations yet they’re quick to criticize. Well I should let you know that you are helping thousands and indirectly millions. If you want to admonish AIOSEO for setting their defaults inappropriately, fine by me. Can’t wait to get my hands on your SEO Plugin. I tried to follow your directions for using Headspace 2 but ran into a hitch that I didn’t have time or enough knowledge to resolve. I use AIOSEO and am thankful for the work they’ve done but there is always room for improvement. Thanks for all you do.

  57. jimjinrightBy jimjinright on 16 June, 2010

    I’ve found that the all in one SEO plug in does a fair job. However, I’m with you in the fact I’d like to have more control over my tags. I look forward to learning more about your new plug in!

  58. JacquelineBy Jacqueline on 18 June, 2010

    I’m a faithful follower of this site. I don’t understand EVERYTHING, but MANY things have been very helpful. I upgraded to WordPress 3.0 this morning and now I’m having problems with my tags, so I’m definitely looking forward to what you have to offer. Also, I’ve improved my ranking tremendously, thanks to you and your expertise!!! Thanks for everything.

  59. MicheleBy Michele on 19 June, 2010

    Hi Joost,
    Great post! I have just a quick question. I am currently using Headspace 2 and when I updated
    to WP 3.0 there are a number of issues.
    I was just wondering what would be the next best SEO plugin in your opinion?

    Thanks again for everything!
    Warm Regards,
    Michele

  60. JohnBy John on 21 June, 2010

    Joost, how do you think your SEO plugin will compare to SEO Ultimate? As far as I know it’s the most feature-complete WordPress SEO plugin right now.
    http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/seo-ultimate/

  61. TonyBy Tony on 21 June, 2010

    Hello Joost, if you are working on a seo plugin, would be great to let it work together with WPML, multilingual for worpdress. I am working on a new ebsite right now. Its working with All in One Seo, but not totally good.
    You can not make seperate titles and descriptions for the translated HOME page. All the others seem to work good.

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 21 June, 2010

      Might work that in later, but I’m guessing that’ll not go in on release, just to much other stuff with higher priorities lying around…

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