How to use the Yoast SEO internal linking tool

The Yoast SEO plugin comes with an internal linking tool for WordPress. This is a feature in Yoast SEO Premium that allows you to work on your internal linking structure. Internal linking is one of the most important ways to optimize your pages. Internal links contribute to a better site structure, easier crawling, and indexing of your pages. In this article, we’ll explain how to use the Yoast SEO internal linking tool.

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How to get started with the internal linking tool

Before the internal linking tool can get to work, Yoast SEO Premium needs to scan your content in WordPress. The plugin needs to determine what your posts are about, and it does that by scanning your content. We would like you to help us a bit here, by starting that process for us in the settings of Yoast SEO.

  1. Log in to your WordPress website.

    When you’re logged in, you will be in your ‘Dashboard’.

  2. Go to ‘SEO’.

    On the left-hand side, you will see a menu. In that menu, click on ‘SEO’.

  3. Click on ‘Tools’.

    The ‘SEO’ settings will expand providing you additional options. Click on ‘Tools’.

  4. Click ‘Analyze your content’.

    Click the ‘Analyze your content’ button to start analyzing and building these internal linking suggestions. That’s step one. No need to do that again, unless you have a specific reason for it. We will learn from each newly published posts what it is about.
    activate the internal linking tool by analyzing your content

A few things to remember:

  • You only have to analyze your content this once. 
  • It may take some time if you have a lot of content.
  • Keep the browser window open while the analysis is running. 
  • There is no option to pause the analysis, but you can click ‘Stop analysis’ and come back to it later.

Once complete, you should see a green checkmark.

Where to find the internal linking tool

Now that we have analyzed your content, we can give you internal linking suggestions. The internal linking tool for WordPress is located in the Yoast sidebar of your page and post editor (see image below).

When you click ‘Internal linking suggestions’, the tab will expand and it will show you internal linking suggestions. These suggestions are divided into two sections:

  1. Cornerstone content
  2. Regular content

Cornerstone content consists of the most important articles on your site. These are the pages or posts you want to rank highest in the search engines. Therefore, it makes sense to link to these articles most often.

In the internal linking tool, we use two icons:

  1. A copy/paste icon. Click that icon, and we’ll add the link to your clipboard.
  2. A checkmark for all the posts you have already linked to in your article.

There is also a drag-and-drop functionality in there as well, which makes internal linking even easier. Simply click a link and hold your mouse button. Move to the spot where you want the link and release the button. Done! With this drag-and-drop option, you can create a related post block on the fly, just to name one of the possibilities.

Oh, and just so there’s no confusion: the internal linking tool is indeed a feature of our Premium plugin. It’s one of those extra features of our Yoast SEO Premium plugin that make it worth your while.