The Best SEO Tools, SEO WordPress Plugins For 2011 Part 2

SEO WordPress Plugins

This is the second part of the Best SEO Tools and SEO Plugins mini-series for 2011. A couple of days ago, I provided you with the best SEO tools, and today we will cover the best WordPress SEO plugins. Don’t forget to always apply the best SEO practices first, as these plugins will only aid you in your SEO campaign. If you are new to all this, start by reading the only guide I recommend for all levels, which is the Google’s SEO Guide. You won’t regret it.

Best SEO WordPress Plugins 2011

Headspace 2: This is one of those alternatives (or not) to some other popular SEO plugins available for WordPress. Found out about this plugin via Nicolas Cardot’s blog and boy, this is powerful. So powerful, it makes you wonder why it is not for sale (free).

UPDATED (April, 2011): I found this excellent video tutorial of HeadSpace2 by Cenay Nailor. If you prefer seeing exactly what you have to do to make this SEO Plugin work for you, I highly recommend you viewing it. Cenay goes from start to finish on how to install, setup and finalize the use of HeadSpace2. It is rather a long video (approx 24 minutes), but that’s what it takes to cover the full capabilities of this plugin.

SEO Plugin: Headspace2 Video Tutorial – Setup and Get Started

HeadSpace SEO 2

Other recommended SEO plugins are All-In-One SEO Pack and Platinum SEO.

SEO Smart Links: Deep link or internal linking (linking to another article in your site) is something you should be doing at least once on each post you publish. This gives extra SEO benefits and entices users to stay a while longer in your website. I know that this could be a daunting tasks, specially if you have many articles published, so what this plugin does is that it automatically finds keywords in your post that “matches” an article and creates a link to that post. You can also set it up for manual keywords and if you are creative enough, even use it as part of your affiliate marketing ninja training, lol.

Yesterday, I finally got my hands on the premium version of SEO SmartLinks (business edition). I am telling you this because in case you are interested of offering SEO services, have multiple websites, or simply looking for extra insane features, then you might want to take the time to just see what it has to offer. Nothing to buy, unless you want to. Just see the differences between them. Remember though that the free version is already “fantastico”. Stay tuned though as I will be posting a more in depth review of SEO SmartLinks Premium Version.

seo smart links

Google XML Sitemap: Must have, period. This takes care of everything you need to submit your sitemaps to Google and other popular search engines for better visibility. Install, activate and submit. No brainer!

WP Touch: Mobile search, according to the latest estimates account for 10% of global search already, and counting. Mobile devices are now being used almost everyday and users that have “internet browser” capabilities can surf via this tiny little gadgets. Thing is, this gadgets have small screens and do not have the power of “larger” devices and therefore are still very limited. This plugin will ensure that your website is mobile friendly. Another plugin you may wish to consider is the WordPress Mobile Pack. It has some cool features and worth checking out, in case WPT does not work well for you.

WordPress Firewall 2: a plugin that “defends” your website against possible attacks. This WordPress plugin investigates web requests with simple, WordPress-specific heuristics, to identify and stop the most obvious attacks. There are a few powerful, generic modules that do this; but they’re not always installed on web servers, and usually difficult to configure. Aside from its purpose, the main idea here is to remind you know that backing up your data and protecting it is equally relevant to your SEO. If your website gets hacked or some malicious codes manages its way in, your site in bound to have “big” problems.

NOTE: This plugin may slow down you websites loading time. If you experience this problem, deactivate it and procure other alternatives.

SEO Friendly Images: A WordPress optimization plugin that automatically updates all images with proper ALT and TITLE attributes. If your images do not have ALT and TITLE already set, SEO Friendly Images will add them according to the options you set. Additionally this makes the post W3C/xHTML valid as well. ALT attribute is important part of search engine optimization. It describes your image to search engine and when a user searches for a certain image this is a key determining factor for a match. Do not underestimate the power of properly optimized images.

MAX A/B Testing: This is absolutely fresh from the source. So Fresh, I have not yet taken it for a spin. I am letting you know about this as I am sure you will find it as interesting as I do and within the process, if you do give it try, provide us here with your views about the plugin. MaxA/B, is a free plugin that makes it easy to perform A/B testing directly within WordPress. MAXAB Testing Some highlights of the MaxA/B plugin are:

  • No need for external services such as Optimizely or Visual Website Optimizer
  • Works with any WordPress theme and any page can be used in the experiments
  • Experiments consist of the original page, up to 3 variation pages, and a conversion page
  • The conversion page can be on a completely different site/domain and still work
  • Create an unlimited number of experiments, pause and re-start at any time
  • Metrics are captured and calculated in real-time

Interesting, isn’t it? As I said, I have not tested this yet, and found about it yesterday. I for sure will give it a test drive and see what it can deliver.

WP-DbManager (Backup Plugin): Although not directly part of SEO, you still want to make sure that in case something “bad” happens to your website, that you have an adequate backup of everything to ensure minimal time to restore. After all, what are there for search engines to crawl if they can not find your website, right? The most popular and recommended backup plugin is WP-DbManager. Alternatively, I use Automatic Backup which requires you to have an Amazon S3 account. You can find more info here in this post of must have plugins for your Home Based Business.

SEO Slugs: This plugin strips common words like “what”, “you” , “can”, “to”, “or” out of your post slug (Permalink) to make it more search engine friendly. With SEO Slugs plugin activated, the slug for a blog post that: looks like this…/the-best-seo-tools-seo-wordpress-plugins-for-2011-part-2 becomes like this…/best-seo-tools-wordpress-plugins-2011 The slug is generated upon saving a post (so you get a chance to look at it before publishing, and change it), or when you hit the publish button. It won’t overwrite any existing slug. You can force a new slug generation by deleting the existing one (not recommended). An old plugin but works perfectly well on current WP version.

SEO Auto Links And Related Posts: One of the current rising stars on the WordPress repository, SLRP (for short), is an excellent alternative to other similar SEO plugins as it combines both interlinking of your content and displays your related post at the same time. Obviously there is the option to turn one or the other off, in case you are already using a deep linking plugin. What I like best about this rising star plugin is that there are options normally found only on premium plugins. Examples are automatically creating keywords as affiliate links, displaying thumbnails on related posts, etc. The auto links feature will automatically convert post title, meta keywords, and post tags found inside the blog posts into an internal link. You really have to give it a try.

Keyword Winner: Maybe the only “paid” SEO tool in this list. While this is so, I also wanted to share this with you simply because it saves you time. Sometimes you just want to write your post and publish it without the tedious task of researching for keywords, analyzing strength and competition, and that whole hullabaloo :). This plugin does the job and does it well. Title tags are one of the most important factors in on-page SEO and if you have the edge of publishing an article that is compelling for readers and optimized for SEO, why not, right? My friend Dan, is the developer of this awesome plugin, and he is a guy that is always there, should you need his support.

more SEO plugins

[note]UPDATE: The Best WordPress SEO plugins for 2012 is now available.[/note]

That’s it! On a side note, and while you may not think it is, consider using WordPress themes that are SEO optimized. WordPress SEO optimized themes are developed having in mind, among other things (ex: user friendly), quality coding to ensure that search bots can crawl your websites without hurdles. Poor coding can have a serious impact in your SEO. In addition, you should really be careful when choosing your themes, specially free ones. I’ll leave this one for a more detailed information in the near future.

[tip]Here’s a tip: Wanna know how I got this post ranking well on search engines? Simple, aside from taking action, I also used Keyword Winner to find targeted keywords and If you really are serious about your SEO, remember that the most important “human” factor is to make it happen (action, action, action..). Now I do understand that all this could be overwhelming, and there are many reasons why you would prefer to have someone do the SEO work for you. If that is your case, I can help. Please visit my SEO consulting service page and find out more. Thanks![/tip]

These plugins automate some tasks that can help and save you time. They won’t however guarantee top rankings but will help to get you there. And when you get there (which I’m sure you will), keep it there. SEO is an ongoing process and your rankings can drop very quickly if you don’t do anything about it. Think of it this way, There is always someone who is competing with you. Hard true fact! So, have I missed anything? Are you familiar with all these SEO plugins for WordPress? How do you like them and have you noticed any difference after using them?


DiTesco is a Business and Inbound Marketing Consultant, and founder of iBlogzone's main objective is to help startups and small business owners achieve success in their online ventures. | More About Me and my Digital Marketing Services in SP Brazil.

62 thoughts on “The Best SEO Tools, SEO WordPress Plugins For 2011 Part 2

  • I really enjoyed the first part of the Best SEO Tools and SEO Plugins mini-series and the second part is great too. I use most of these plugins myself, especially the SEO Smart Links plugins. I love the free version so much that I’m planning on getting the premium version soon.

    The SEO Friendly Images plugin sounds great. I haven’t used it yet but I plan on installing it on one of my blogs today and see how I like it. Thanks a lot for the recommendations DiTesco I see a few plugins that I will give a try.

    • HI Jason. SEO Friendly Images is a great tool. Optimizing images is very powerful and one can be surprised as to how much traffic in can generate. Not top quality traffic though but still traffic. If 10% of those are good then it is already worth the while. SEO Smart Links is really one of my favorites and the Premium version is simply better. Thanks for stopping by

  • Hi Ditesco,
    I am a regular reader of iblogzone but commenting on very first time. I have learned a lot about Search Engine Optimization from your articles which you have published here.
    Most of visitors of my blogs came from Search Engines and I have very low ratio of my permanent followers. So, I always tried SEO tips for my blogs.
    Thanks for your informative articles.

  • Excellent list of SEO tools for WordPress blogging brother, nice to see you back in the game.

    • Hi John. Thanks for taking the time to stop by. Always good to see you around 🙂 Test drive the MAX A/B and let me know if you find it useful.

  • I still go pretty minimal with my setup – good ol’ All-in-one SEO; it gets the job done on the niche sites I create while the content picks up the rest.

    I’ve played with headspace for a while too and really enjoyed it. The other little plugins do look worthwhile though since they can autotag stuff.

    • Hi Murlu. AIO is an excellent SEO plugin and the only reason I don’t use it here is because Thesis does not need one. I do however use it in all but one website where I am running a test drive of headspace. Thanks for stopping by

  • I loved reading the first part of this article and I must say the second part is equally interesting.

  • I’m using most of these, I noticed when I first started SEO plugins on my wordpress blog, it improved my SERP, so I would recommend anyone making use of these plugins 😉

    • Thanks Karen for your taking the time to stop by. These plugins do make a difference and it helps a lot in improving “positions” on the SERPs. Definitely better than those who don’t use any SEO plugins, that’s for sure 🙂

  • Outstanding list, DiTesco.

    I have been meaning to try SEO Smart Link, but never got around to installing it, especially since I have too many plugins already.

    But I may try it, anyway. I understand there is a significant speed difference between the paid and free versions. Have you worked with both?

    Thanks again for great list 🙂


    • Hi rick. SEO Smartlinks is just great and I absolutely love it. It is kinda, set and forget kinda thing and it also great to use it for your affiliate links. Set the keyword, point the link, and the plugin sets it up for you automagically 🙂 As far as the free version and premium version is concerned, I just installed the business edition last week and to be honest with you, I have not felt any difference between them, with the exception that the premium version has obviously more “goodies” attached to it. Either than that, the free version is “thumbs up”. I have been using it for the last 6 months and no problems (fortunately). Unless you have a plugin that takes care of your “deep linking”, then I suggest you give the free version a shot. Maybe you’ll like it. Let me know how it goes.

  • Thank you for an interesting and informative blog post.

    I got to go get me some of these plugins for my blog. I’m happy to hear about MAX A/B Testing and definitely have to install it.

    Warm regards,

    • Hi Dottson. Glad you found this post useful and MAX A/B is indeed very interesting. As I said, not much experience here (yet), but I have it installed and now experiments to see what happens. Crossing fingers 🙂 Thanks for stopping by

  • DiTesco, you will never cease to amaze, will you? Your articles are full of diadems. I feel like I’m in a treasure box of priceless SEO tips and all. Thank you so much for sharing the treasure with us.

    • Hi Anne. You are welcome and thanks for the kind words.

  • Not many tools for optimizing images out there, but thanks for the info on SEO friendly images!

  • nice one dude! The Keyword Winner plugin helps you also when it comes to anchor text, giving you the best solution for better results. Keyword Winner is the first one, if not the only, paid plugin that I would buy. Thanks for your useful points

    • Hi Steven. Thanks for leaving your thoughts about Keyword winner. I do agree with you that it goes far beyond just searching for nn competitive keywords. Thanks for stopping by

  • Great set of plugins, I had almost all of them installed on my blog expect 2 of them which I have just installed. Thanks for sharing

  • Wow thanks for these awesome plugins. I am going to try that SEO Smart Links out since I have heard so many good words about it from literally everywhere! 😛


  • This is really very good information for wordpress bloggers like me. I know about very less tools from above list, I think almost all the tools are new for me.
    I was searching about wordpess plugin information in Google and I found yours post, the above information is enough for me.
    Keep updating with latest stuff.

  • That’s a good compiltion list for plugins. Keyword Winner, though paid, is good as well.

  • Thank you for a useful list of plugins. I used only All in one SEO but after reading this I think I’m going to try other 🙂

  • Just started to blog yesterday. Thanks a lot for your information. I just installed headspace2 and xml sitemap. My post can already be found in google. Again, thanks a lot for the information.

    • Hi Yutian. How’s your blog doing?

  • Hi, thanks for all the great info! I’ve signed up for your training and will be catching up with past articles to really maximize my blog.
    Keep up the good work!
    Namaste, Alexandria

    • Hi Alexandria. Thanks for signing up and I do hope you find “plenty” of useful stuff here for you to use. looking forward to hearing more from you in the future. Thanks for stopping by and have a great weekend

  • @ DiTesco – I have seen few of your blog post, all of them were good ones! In this post the chart you have given is not clear for me ……………. Thanks for the links!

  • You have built a list providing very useful plugins for SEO. Thanks! I have not heard of many of them so this is very helpful for me.

    warm wishes,

  • Good and informative article diTesco. Turned out I was doing well already which makes the article even better::)) No need to install any more plugins.

    • Hi Catarina. Good for you 🙂 Means you are in control and vigilant about all things SEO. It is an ongoing process so keep it up and good luck to your online SEO campaigns. All the best

  • Nice information . These SEO friendly plugins save a lot of time indeed but sometimes , we need variation on ‘on-page-optimisation-process’ such as choosing tags. This plugins works on a certain way and they are unable to do variation. I personally recommend people to have faith on their minds is better than using a tag optimiser. But the plugins, WP Touch is really nice and is capable to do the job as you told in your article . However , I enjoyed your post and I would prefer to praise your effort to make people aware about all these things .

  • Can anyone recommend an plugin for scheduling events?

  • HeadSpace and All-in-one-seo wordpress plugins are very useful, can i use both plugin in my blog?

  • Just installed that “SEO Auto Links & Related Posts” looks pretty good i have been looking for a tool that can do this to build up the number of internal links.

    • Yeah! This tool is really awesome and it uses less resources than other similar plugins. I am not using the “internal” linking feature though but love the related post option. Glad you liked it and I hope it would proves useful to you 🙂 Thanks for taking the time to comment

  • Hi, thanks for the list. I am new to all of this and have installed a number of plugins that i believe will help following much research. My question is – do all of these plugins operate alongside side of each other or do they conflict? Am i right in thinking that most of these are set up and forget?

    Many thanks..

    • Hi Charlie. Yes, most of these plugins are set and forget and you can install them all at the same time with the exception of those that I provide alternatives. Those you will have to choose between one or another. Example is HeadSpace and All In One SEO. You choose between the two. If you are just new to this, I suggest you use All-in-one as it is simpler and gets good results. Good luck!

  • Hi
    Many thanks for your reply. I am trying to do the SEO myself as I have been quoted $600 per month to do this work!! As a small business I believe that this is excessive so thought I would give it ago! What amazes me is that website builders dont seem to expain that SEO needs to be done once a site has been built and idiots like me take it that once it has been built it would climb the rankings!! How wrong I was.

    • Hi Charlie. Doing SEO by yourself is just like your small businesses topic, you need training and implementation. Not knowing what you have to do in the beginning does not put you in the category of “idiots”, as plain and simple, you don’t know what you don’t know. Hiring someone to do the SEO for you is not entirely out of the picture and sometimes it is better to do it right in the beginning than somewhere in the middle. These way, you can plan “things” accordingly”. These plugins, will get you started, although it does not relieve you from implementing “other” important SEO techniques, as an ongoing necessity. Target for a few keywords, and concentrate on those. I have looked at your site and the design is fantastic. The “red” color is a perfect fit for your topic 🙂 and at first glance, your topic does not seem to be that difficult to rank for. You just need to find the “right” keywords and work on them.

      If you need help, let me know. Send me an email and I am sure we can reach an agreement that is way more reasonable than the quote you have been provided 🙂 In any event, and if you have time, read everything you can first here on my SEO Center. Its got everything you need.

  • DiTesco
    Thank you for your honest response, I will seriously bear what you say in mind and may well be in touch. I have a plan of attack and am going to give it a go for 6 months and see how I go! I am lucky in the sense that I have 12 months of work at present so I have some time in the bank. I have made a note of where i am in the google rankings so I will keep an eye on things over the coming weeks.
    Thanks again

    • You are welcome Charlie. Keep in mind that SEO is an ongoing process and monitoring your performance regularly is part of the plan 🙂 Also, don’t forget that you also need to work on your “off-page” optimization to ensure that you get the results you are looking for … Lastly and correct me if I am wrong, your business seems to be targeted more on a specific geo-location. If this is the case, it might be interesting to list your site on Google places, in case you have not yet done so. Good luck and if I can be of any assistance, just let me know.

      • Thanks for that info, we do try and stay relatively local and I was not aware of Google places! I will take a look now. Thanks for all of the tips, as I said I may well be in touch. I am sure that many others have benefitted from you advice.

  • I already use All in One SEO & WP-DbManager (Backup Plugin). Do you think I need to use any other SEO plugin? Thanks for resourceful article

    • Hi Ahsan. If you use ManageWP, you might feel that having WP-DbManager is just taking up some of your resources and not use it for completely. However, this is only recommended if you do use ManageWP, even if it is just to manage one site. As for having “other” SEO plugins, maybe not, if you are using All.In.One already. However there are other plugins that does different things and could be a good combination with AIO.

  • Hey DiTesco,
    You’ve nailed it. Your post is spot on.Before reading this I’d never heard about Headspace 2. I’m watching the video right now then will install it straight away.
    Thanks buddy!

  • Thank you for the detailed list of SEO WP plugins. I have been using only Platinum SEO pack and Google XML Sitemaps for SEO. I have bookmarked this page and will give other plugins a try.

  • Thanks for sharing but what is your suggestion? I’m using Platinum SEO Pack and I found a plugin SEO Helper, what do you think DiTesco?

    • Hi Latief. Platinum pack is also good and I don’t think that it will do you much good if you opt for changing it now, unless you are not satisfied with the results. The recommendations I provide here is in case you have not made a decision yet or if you are not happy with the one you are currently using. Therefore, I think you are in good hands with both platinum and helper.. Now all you need is top rated articles with your “keywords” that you are targeting for in there 🙂 Hope this helped. Thanks for stopping by

  • Been using the All-in one SEO pack until I saw this Headspace recently and after watching the video.. It was indeed very in-depth and very informative. Great job.

  • Great list there are quite a few on there I have not heard of yet. You make soem really great suggestions I have quite a bit to thnk about

  • I just launched my site 4 weeks ago, so now I’m researching the must have plug-ins for WordPress SEO. It seems like I will need to install more than one plug-in. Thinking of taking the following steps:

    SEO All-in-One
    Google XML Sitemaps
    SEO Smartlinks
    SEO Friendly Images

    I’m hoping some are set and forget like Smartlinks

  • Lots of cool and useful plugins Fransisco.

    I try to keep plugins to a minimum in order to keep the blog speedy. So, instead of using some of these plugins, I do things manually. For example, every time I publish a new post, I make sure to link to at least 1 or 2 other posts from it.

    However, there are some things that doing them manually would be time consuming and not very efficient. In those cases, I do use plugins.

    I have been looking for a security plugin and WordPress Firewall 2 seems like a good one. Although, the note you included about it slowing down your blog concerns me. Are you using it, if so, whats your experience with it?

    Thanks for the list and the links.

  • i think AIO SEO is the best.. i am using it and its flawless..

  • I really enjoyed the first part of the Best SEO Tools and SEO Plugins mini-series and the second part is great too.

  • Enjoyed the post thoroughly! My favorite is SEO Smart Links. I prefer WP SEO By Yoast over AIO SEO & other plugins! 🙂

  • Hi,

    Thanks for this very useful tips. I am right now designing one complete plugin sets so that I from now on easily can pop out a lof ot websites with powerful plugins attached.

    Best regards,

  • Can i put all SEO plugin in one blog?
    Which one the best SEO plugin should i choose?

    • HiDz. It is not recommended to put all SEO plugins in one blog. If you use AIO then stick to that. Other plugins can be used in conjunction with either AIO or Headspace, like SEO Smart Links.

      • All in One SEO Pack
        SEO Ultimate
        Platinum SEO Pack

        which one better?or you can suggest any plugin?

        • Hi Dz. All of the three above I would go for All In One, based on my experience. The other two are also good but I prefer AIO

Comments are closed.