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Yoast SEO in WordPress 5.0: a visual guide

Today, WordPress 5.0 comes out. It ships with a brand new WordPress editor, previously known as Gutenberg. If you decide to update, you’ll find a brand new interface with lots of changed functionalities. You might wonder what happens to Yoast SEO if you use the new editor? Don’t worry, your favorite SEO tool is ready for WordPress 5.0! In this post, we’ll show you where to find all the Yoast SEO tools in this new editing environment.

WordPress 5.0

What’s all this fuzz about WordPress 5.0? As mentioned, it brings the new WordPress editor, aka Gutenberg. Read Edwin’s post to find out what it is and why it could be such a big step forward. Or read our answers to FAQs about the new WordPress editor. Wondering if you should update now? Then check Joost’s advice. In any case, don’t forget to test what it does to your website first!

Yoast SEO in WordPress 5.0

Since Yoast SEO 8.0, our flagship plugin is compatible with WordPress 5.0. First, we introduced the Yoast SEO sidebar with most features in it and later on, in 8.2, we made sure the snippet preview worked in the sidebar as well. We’ve fine-tuned stuff and added some super handy structured data blocks too: an FAQ block as well as a How to block! With those blocks you can create FAQ and How to pages with structured data in a jiffy. More on that further down this post.

A Yoast SEO metabox… and a sidebar!

Don’t fret! You can still find your post optimization tools in the Yoast SEO meta box below your posts and pages. The snippet preview, the readability and SEO analysis, just to name a few, are still there at your disposal.

Nevertheless, we’ve grabbed the opportunity to move most Yoast SEO features to a more convenient spot too: the sidebar! The advantage of that is, that you can optimize your posts without scrolling up and down all the time.

So now, you can optimize your content in two spots:

  • In the Yoast SEO sidebar, next to the blocks;
  • In the Yoast SEO meta box below the blocks.

A few features are only available in the Yoast SEO meta box. We’ve listed those at the end of this post.

Yoast SEO in the sidebar

Where to find Yoast SEO in the sidebar? Just click on the Yoast logo on upper right side of your screen. An overview of available Yoast SEO features will unfold:

Yoast SEO in the sidebar WordPress 5.0

How awesome is that! You don’t have to scroll down to find your scores and tweak your posts. Let’s go through the features one by one.

The snippet preview and editor

The first item you’ll see is the snippet preview. Click on it to preview what your post might look like in the search results. You can edit your SEO title, slug and meta description here:

modal snippet preview

The readability analysis

One step down in the sidebar you’ll find the readability analysis. Click on it to unfold it. The readability analysis will provide you with feedback on the readability of your copy. Are many of your sentences too long? Do you use subheadings? Is your paragraph length ok? Strive for a green smiley to make sure your copy is easy to read!

yoast seo readanility analysis in the sidebar

If you have red bullets, e.g. for sentence length or passive voice, you can click on the eye icon to see which sentences you can improve.

Your focus keyphrase

What phrase would you like your post or page to rank for? This is your focus keyphrase and you can enter it in the sidebar now too:

focus keyphrase sidebar

Yoast SEO will run a check on your content and see if you use your focus keyphrase in the right places. You should strive for an overall green smiley next to your focus keyphrase.

On Yoast SEO Premium? In that case, you can set synonyms of your focus keyphrase too and the SEO analysis will take those into account.

Google cares about context. If you write about a particular topic, it makes sense you mention related topics as well. For instance, if you’d write about autumn you’d mention rain or falling leaves too. If you place your content in the right context it’s easier for search engines to understand and rank your content. That’s why you can enter related keywords in Yoast SEO Premium too.

In the Yoast SEO sidebar you can click on + related keyphrase and add the keyphrases that you shouldn’t forget to mention in your copy:

related keyphrases Yoast SEO sidebar

Cornerstone content

Do you know which content is the most important content on your website? (If you don’t, please read this post about cornerstone content!). Here you can mark those essential articles as cornerstone content:

cornerstone content in the Yoast SEO sidebar

If you do this, those articles will get a stricter SEO analysis, because they should be exceptionally good articles. And, if you’re on Premium, they’ll appear on top of your internal linking suggestions, because you should link to them often.

Internal linking suggestions – Premium only!

The last item in the sidebar is our internal linking suggestion tool. If you link related posts and pages to each other, it’s easier for users to navigate your website. On top of that, it helps Google to make sense of the focus of your website. Our internal linking tool helps you to find and link related content:

gutenberg sidebar internal linking

Yoast structured data blocks

Structured data can give you a competitive edge in the search engines. It’s also likely to become more and more important in the years to come. Our structured data blocks make implementing structured data super easy. Everyone can do this, no need for a developer!

The FAQ block

Our first structured data block is the FAQ block. It helps you implement data for your frequently asked questions page. Just click on the + sign on top of your new editing screen, and you’ll see the Yoast Structured Data Blocks:

After that, it’s just a matter of filling out questions and answers! Read Edwin’s post to find out how the FAQ structured data block works exactly.

The How-to block

Have a lot of how-to articles on your site? The other Yoast SEO block will help you add structured data to those articles. Just select the block and fill out the necessary data, like total time and the steps people have to take:

An empty HowTo content block in Gutenberg. Just fill in the fields to get going!

Read the full instructions on how to add how-to structured data with Yoast SEO here.

What you won’t find in the sidebar — yet

Some features aren’t incorporated in the new Yoast SEO sidebar yet. For instance, the features you’ll find in the advanced tab in the Yoast SEO meta box, like the meta robots tags, breadcrumb titles and canonical URLs. Also, if you want to check the Social previews (a premium feature), you should still go to the good old meta box below your post. We’ll keep you posted when new features are added to the Yoast SEO sidebar!

Even better SEO with Yoast SEO Premium!

  • Optimize your site for the right keywords for your users
  • Avoid dead links in your site
  • Get previews for sharing on Twitter and Facebook
  • Content quality and link suggestions as you write
More info

32 Responses to Yoast SEO in WordPress 5.0: a visual guide

  1. goldenrb
    goldenrb  • 2 years ago

    Just updated to new version of W, there are many changes which has to be done. This guide helps a lot!

  2. Gerva sharma
    Gerva sharma  • 2 years ago

    I don’t think so many users are liking this new editor. For me it’s confusing. My question is there any massive under the hood changes? Because I can see that my sites are now loading bit slower.

  3. kuldeep dogra
    kuldeep dogra  • 2 years ago

    This is a great Yoast Seo guide. You explained everything in detail.

  4. Brent Layton
    Brent Layton  • 2 years ago

    Since the update, Yoast is no longer working on my site. It says there’s no content.

    I’ve read suggested fixes and attempted them but I haven’t gotten it working, again.

    Suggestions, please?

    • Willemien Hallebeek

      Hi Brent,
      We’re sorry to hear that! Could you please create an issue on our GitHub repository? That’ll make it easier for us to help you.

  5. The Thus
    The Thus  • 2 years ago

    There is some issue like jetpack Proof Reading is disabled in WordPress 5.0 did Yoast have and plugins like grammar checker or proof reading?

    • Willemien Hallebeek

      Hi! We do have a readability check in Yoast SEO. It checks whether your sentences and paragraph aren’t too long, for instance. We don’t have a grammar check or proofreading tool though. So better contact JetPack about this issue. Good luck!

  6. siti rohaida yusof
    siti rohaida yusof  • 2 years ago

    hi.i am already update my wordpress 5.0 but the plugin yoast Seo cannot be install with my wordpress .may i know why coz when i want to install the plug in

  7. Dolly Singh
    Dolly Singh  • 2 years ago

    Just updated to new version of W, there are many changes which has to be done. This guide helps a lot!

    • Willemien Hallebeek

      Hi Dolly, glad to be of help!

  8. gilan rotem
    gilan rotem  • 2 years ago

    im unable to see the the Yoast logo and meta description in the new dashboard

    • Willemien Hallebeek

      Hi Gilan, We’re sorry to hear that. Please create an issue on our GitHub repository and we’ll look into the issue asap:

  9. princesandy
    princesandy  • 2 years ago

    Thanks for sharing. Its very helpful to improve SEO for our site. Thanks yoast i like it.

  10. sandeep
    sandeep  • 2 years ago

    WordPress update is very exciting as it releases new features every time. Visual WordPress is too exciting to see and it will be very handy to use

  11. SUMANT
    SUMANT  • 2 years ago

    Soon after installing WP 5.0 my website started behaving strangely. May be it was due to theme compatibility issues or whatever. I am trying to cope though.

    Can you suggest a remedy why I am not able to make my posts featured. I am selecting the checkbox but after refreshing the page after update, it comes unchecked. Any bug?

  12. Gazitek
    Gazitek  • 2 years ago

    Hi, I am premium user of Yoast SEO . Yesterday , I updated WordPress 5.0 my web site. After that, i didn’t open organizer posts and pages. All plugins were deactived step by step and the issue stems from Yoast Seo.
    Please support this problem, because for the premium version, it is a bad situation.

    • Iris Guelen
      Iris Guelen  • 2 years ago

      Hi! I’m sorry to hear that, please feel free to reach out to our support team at They can help you further as quickly as possible, good luck!

  13. Syed Jawad
    Syed Jawad  • 2 years ago

    Hye I am free user of Yoast SEO and since GUTENBERG update happened my yoast seo meta box disappeared. It is showing blank space. I can not see SEO metabox… and a sidebar!

    As I am free user so i cannot have premium but is there any guideline.
    And also I dont have WPML plugin installed.

    • Marketa
      Marketa  • 2 years ago

      Same here… I have gone back and forth between the old editor and Gutenberg – Yoast no longer works in either. Strange.

    • Ben Vaassen
      Ben Vaassen  • 2 years ago

      Hi Syed,

      sorry to hear that. We also had a report with the Pods – Custom Content Types and Fields plugin breaking our meta box, but their latest version fixed the issue. If you are not using that, there might be another plugin who is causing the conflict (or perhaps your theme). You can check by disabling all, except Yoast SEO and enable them again one at a time.

      If you need further support, please read Good luck!

  14. Sion Walton-Guest
    Sion Walton-Guest  • 2 years ago

    Hi, we have the most up to date version of WordPress and Yoast. However nothing from your screenshots above is showing, nothing in the sidebar and the yoast box under our post in editor mode (where I would write the meta description etc) is simply blank and not showing anything.

    Can you help? Thanks.

    • Ben Vaassen
      Ben Vaassen  • 2 years ago

      Hi Sion,

      I’m sorry about that. There is a known conflict with WPML Media (which will be fixed once they release an update) and with Pods – Custom Content Types and Fields (which is already fixed with their latest version). If you aren’t using either, I’d suggest performing a conflict check with other plugins and your theme. You can use our guide here if you don’t know how:

      For further support, I’d like to refer you to Good luck!

  15. Leonardo Muñoz
    Leonardo Muñoz  • 2 years ago

    There are already three blogs in which I have read about WordPress 5.0 so I decided to update one of my blogs and try and take a star with the editor Gutenberg, really adding blocks for each paragraph is quite annoying and then I return to the version 4.9.8. What bothers me most is that I know that at some point I will have to update to this new version even if I do not want to.

  16. Alex Elliot
    Alex Elliot  • 2 years ago

    My Yoast Plugin is not working with 5.0.

    The SEO box below the post which usually contains the snippet preview, readability index and the focus keyword is completely blank. Just gone.

    Any suggestions?

    • Ben Vaassen
      Ben Vaassen  • 2 years ago

      Hi Alex,

      sorry about that. There is a known conflict with WPML Media (which will be fixed once they release an update) and with Pods – Custom Content Types and Fields (which is already fixed with their latest version). If you aren’t using either, I’d suggest performing a conflict check with other plugins and your theme. You can use our guide here if you don’t know how:

      For further support, please refer to Good luck!

  17. Akash
    Akash  • 2 years ago

    Its very helpful to improve seo for our site. Thanx yoast i like it.

  18. Krishna Amin
    Krishna Amin  • 2 years ago


    I just updated WordPress and the Yoast SEO plug-in. However, the snippet preview, the highlight options under “problems” isn’t working. I’ve deactivated/activated and reinstalled the app but that did not help. Any suggestions?

    Thanks very much!

  19. Ahli Cheat
    Ahli Cheat  • 2 years ago

    hey, can help me.?
    i already try install Yoast , but when i create a post there are no Yoast Control Panel like in above picture.
    what must i do it, please help me.

    • Ben Vaassen
      Ben Vaassen  • 2 years ago

      Hi Ahli,

      I’m sorry to hear that. You can check the settings of Yoast SEO if all features are enabled. If they are, you can check if there is a plugin or theme conflict. If you need further support, please see to check where you can go. Good luck!

  20. Pete reves
    Pete reves  • 2 years ago

    The yoast seo premium plugin shows this message in all of my blog posts: The text contains 0 words. This is far below the recommended minimum of 300 words. Add more content that is relevant to the topic. Can you help me to identify what is happening? I have published a lot of blog posts with everything OK in green with the yoast seo premium but when doing the update to WordPress 5.0, now in all of the blog posts is appearing this message, like if none of my blog posts have texts and that are not optimized, need help with this. Checking more blog posts the slug and titles are not showing and looks like none of my blog posts previously published in the past are not optimized according to Yoast SEO.

    • Ben Vaassen
      Ben Vaassen  • 2 years ago

      Hi Pete,

      sorry to hear that, that shouldn’t happen. It sounds like a plugin conflict. I can’t really help you further here though. If you have Yoast SEO Premium, you can email our support team. Otherwise, you can go to the WordPress forums and open up a new topic here:

    • Gavin
      Gavin  • 2 years ago

      Hi Pete, I think you need to download a plugin called ‘Advanced Custom Fields PRO’.