rank math vs yoast

Rank Math vs Yoast (2021)

In this post you’ll find out:

We take a deep dive into the Rank Math vs Yoast argument . Which of these seo plugins is going to power your website to the top?

One of the most important plugins for a WordPress website is a search engine optimisation (SEO) plugin which, when configured correctly, can help ensure your website is indexed by search engines and power up your rankings for target keywords.

Yoast SEO has established itself as the key player in the WordPress SEO plugin space for some time, but Rank Math has started to win over users.

But which takes the crown as the best WordPress SEO plugin? In this article, we compare the two on the things that matter most including features, cost, and ease of use.

Yoast SEO – The Original

Launched in 2010, Yoast SEO quickly established itself as one of the go to tools for optimising websites.

Since that time, Yoast has grown significantly as a company, becoming much more than just a WordPress plugin with a really useful library of SEO training courses for learners.

Whilst the basic Yoast plugin offers almost everything that a beginner would need, those looking to take it to their SEO to the next stage are likely to find themselves in need of the premium version.

Rank Math – The Upstart

Rank Math was founded in 2018 in New Delhi by an established WordPress development team with a good track record (MyThemeShop).

Despite there being some huge players in the SEO plugin world (All In One, Yoast, SEO Press), Rank Math cut through the noise and quickly established itself as a favourite with those looking for a plugin that offered more than the basics.

Whilst nobody can say for sure if all the free features offered by Rank Math will stay free forever, the approach they have taken has certainly been successful – winning over 500,000 users in the 2 years since its launch.

Overall Features (Free)

With both plugins created to serve the same function, they have many awesome shared features. Both the free version of Yoast SEO and the free version of Rank Math offer the following tools:

  • SEO Templates – Create and set templates for content such as SEO titles, making it quicker and easier to generate data such as title tags and meta descriptions.
  • XML Sitemap – Create an XML sitemap that can be submitted to search engines to enable quicker indexing of pages.
  • Search Console Integration – Easily connect your site to Google Search Console.
  • Link Counter – Tallying the number of internal and external links to and from your content.
  • Breadcrumbs – Add breadcrumbs to make your website easier to navigate.
  • Social Media Descriptions – Set custom descriptions and images for social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook.
  • Canonical URLs – Set up and manage canonical URLs to avoid duplicate content issues.
  • Woo Commerce SEO – Basic SEO such as title tags for eCommerce pages built using Woo Commerce (a popular WordPress eCommerce plugin).
  • Focus Keywords – Define a focus keyword for your page or post and get a score based on how well your content is optimised.
  • Title Tags & Meta Descriptions – Set custom title tags and meta descriptions for your website pages that are in line with the current character limits set by search engines.
  • Schema Markup – Set sitewide schema markup.

Additional Rank Math Features (Free)

Rank Math’s additional free features have been paramount to its recent explosion in popularity. They include:

  • Broken Link (404) Monitor – Automatically monitors any broken links on your website, these can then be fixed with the native redirection tool.
  • Redirection Tool – Create and manage 301 and 302 redirects on your website to prevent broken links from being created when URLs are changed.
  • Multiple Focus Keywords – Unlike Yoast, Rank Math allows you to choose multiple focus keywords for your posts and pages.
  • Local SEO – Optimise your website for one location with local SEO and Knowledge Graph.
  • Search Console Insights – View data direct from Google Search Console in the backend of your WordPress website.
  • Internal Link Suggestion – Get recommendations for other content on your site to link to whilst you are working in the page editor.
  • Google Analytics Integrations – Easily add the tracking code from Google Analytics to start monitoring website performance.
  • Advanced Schema – Get access to 18 different types of schema such as recipes, FAQs, videos, and reviews.
  • Image SEO – Automatically sets alt tags and title tags for all your images to save you time and improve the optimisation of your images.

Additional Yoast Features (Free)

Not to be outdone, Yoast also has an albeit notably shorter list of exclusive features:

  • Cornerstone Content – Easily mark your important pages as “Cornerstone”, allowing you to better optimise them and get more links to them.
  • Htaccess Editor – Make direct changes to your website’s .htaccess file.
  • Readability Check – As you write, your copy is automatically analysed on readability and given a Flesch Reading Ease score.

Additional Rank Math Features (Paid)

Rank Math currently offers three packages of their premium plugin, starting from £42 per year, (at time of publication).

Upgrading to the premium package gives you access to the following additional features:

  • Rank Tracking – View and track your website search engine rankings and keyword performance from Google Search Console.
  • Local SEO – Optimise your website for multiple locations locally.
  • More Schema – Get access to more powerful types of schema.
  • Watermark Images – Automatically add watermarks to images posted on social media from your website.
  • Google Trends – Integrate Google Trends, a tool that analyses the popularity of search terms over time.
  • Google Video Sitemap – Automatically creates an SEO sitemap for videos uploaded to your website.
  • Google News Sitemap – Automatically creates an SEO sitemap for news articles uploaded to your website.
  • Google AdSense History – Watch your Google AdSense earnings grow from within your WordPress dashboard.

Additional Yoast Features (Paid)

Yoast SEO premium starts from £89 per website, (at time of publication). with discounts of up to 15% when buying licenses for 10 or more websites. Unlike Rank Math, Yoast Premium is a one-off cost. Yoast premium users benefit from the following additional features:

  • Redirection Tool – Create and manage 301 and 302 redirects on your website to prevent broken links from being created when URLs are changed.
  • Multiple Focus Keywords – Choose multiple focus keywords to optimise for when creating your posts and pages.
  • Related Keywords – Get suggestions on related keyphrases pulled from SEMRush data, a powerful SEO tool.
  • Internal Link Suggestor – Get recommendations for other content on your site to link to whilst you are working in the page editor.
  • Internal Link Blocks – Quickly create and deploy link blocks to improve your website hierarchy. Link blocks include table of contents, subpages, and related links.

In addition to the premium version, Yoast offers specific paid add-ons for other types of SEO which can greatly benefit certain websites.

  • Local SEO – Collects and submits local information about your business (such as opening hours) directly to Google using structured data, enhances your contact page, and allows you to optimise for more than one location.
  • News SEO – Creates a special news sitemap that pings Google when you create a new article, adds relevant schema markup to your articles for placement in Google news, and adds extra data to your news posts.
  • Video SEO – Creates a video sitemap, uses schema markup to help Google find your videos, and optimises your videos through faster loading, better sizing, and more.
  • WooCommerce SEO – Creates a powerful product sitemap, uses structured data to provide rich results in search engines, provides additional metadata to users and search engines, and gives you access to more powerful social media tools.
  • At the time of writing, all of the premium add-ons are available at a one-off cost of £69.

Impact On Website Speed

As we have covered in many of our previous blog posts, speed is becoming a more and more important consideration for website owners looking to create positive user experiences and attain better search engine rankings.

Whilst plugins can empower WordPress websites, they can also be its undoing. When plugins are used in conjunction with several others or are built with bloated code, it can have a severe negative impact on the loading speed of your website.

When it comes to the impact on website loading speeds, Rank Math currently wins hands down.

  • First, looking at the number of lines of code used to build each – Rank Math consists of 55,900 whereas Yoast is nearing double this at 93,000.
  • Secondly, the plugin folder size (this is what is uploaded to your website when installing the plugin) of Rank Math sits at 10.5MB, with Yoast more than triple that at 36MB.
  • When it comes to memory usage, Yoast gobbles up four times as much at 1.43MB vs. Rank Math’s 0.35MB.
  • And finally, where the Yoast plugin is expected to add 0.34s to your website’s overall loading time, the Rank Math plugin will add just 0.03s.


  • At the time of writing, the Yoast SEO plugin is active on over 5 million WordPress websites with an average rating of 4.8/5; pretty impressive for a plugin that’s been around so long.
  • When looking at Rank Math, the average rating is a touch higher at 4.9/5. However, there are currently only 900,000 active installations of Rank Math.


As discussed earlier in this post, both Yoast and Rank Math offer free and paid options, meaning that you will need to part with some cash to unlock all the features.

In terms of pricing, Yoast offers the lower cost premium package, with a one off fee that gives you lifetime access to premium features. There are, however, additional fees involved if you wish to unlock the premium add-ons such as video SEO.

However, Rank Math offers significantly more features as standard and certainly has the upper hand of the two plugins in this contest. For many website owners, the basic features that Rank Math offers will comfortably meet their needs; meaning there may be no need to splash the cash at all!

Set Up & Ease of Use

Yoast and Rank Math are both designed to be easy to set up and use without significant expertise; offering a set up wizard to walk you through the initial stages of using the plugin.

  • Rank Math

After installation, Rank Math offers a set up wizard that will walk you through configuring the plugin’s most important basic features; the wizard offers different experiences for basic and advanced users.

Throughout the set up wizard, users will configure Google product integrations, XML sitemap, basic schema information, and other SEO settings.

Following completion of the set up wizard, when using the advanced mode, users are able to enable / disable the modules they want to use; excluding unnecessary bloat from the plugin.

Once you’re all set up, Rank Math is fully integrated with the WordPress Gutenberg editor, meaning you will get recommendations from the plugin as you create your content. If you’re using the classic WordPress editor, Rank Math will be available in the meta box.

  • Yoast

After installing the Yoast plugin, users will be guided through a configuration wizard to get the most important settings such as sitewide schema, indexability, and title tag templates set up.

Once the wizard has been completed the Yoast dashboard can be accessed to make any further advanced configurations and enable / disable features that will not be needed.

When editing your content, those using the WordPress Gutenberg editor will see a Yoast meta box in the sidebar or underneath their content as preferred. When using the classic WordPress editor, Yoast will appear in the meta box.


Yoast and Rank Math both have free and premium versions of support that plugin users can access when they have questions or are experiencing issues.

  • Yoast

As a Yoast user, you will be able to access the free support forum that all plugins have. Due to the popularity of the Yoast plugin, most topics will have been covered before and many new posts are not marked as resolved, so it’s highly recommended to search for your issue before posting.

Additionally, all Yoast users will have access to the Yoast help center which has hundreds of guides and articles covering the most common questions asked by users.

As a Yoast Premium user, you will benefit from premium personal support for one year, this means that you contact Yoast directly with questions about using or setting up the product.

  • Rank Math

Like Yoast, all Rank Math users can access the free WordPress support forum for the plugin. Despite the smaller user base, the forum is very active with multiple posts per day most of which are marked as resolved.

In addition to the WordPress support forum, Rank Math users are also able to use the help center to search through the most commonly asked questions and submit tickets if their query has not yet been answered.

If you are a Rank Math pro user, you get access to 24/7 365 support from product experts who can help answer any questions you have and fix issues.

So, Which Is Better?

Both Yoast and Rank Math offer useful features to website owners that can be used to improve the optimisation of WordPress websites. Of course, it takes more than a plugin alone to ensure SEO success!

Where Yoast has the market share and the comfort of being more established, Rank Math offers an impressive suite of more advanced features for free and is certainly building momentum with experts in the industry.

Whilst there will be die hard fans on both sides, for most website owners it will depend on which features they actually need and which plugin they find easiest to set up and use. Spoiler Alert! We prefer RankMath.

How To Make The Switch

If you are currently using Yoast or Rank Math and wish to switch over to the other, you are in luck. Whilst switching platforms is usually a headache, both plugins have a handy feature that makes it a breeze.

If you are using Rank Math, you can use the set up wizard which will prompt you to deactivate Yoast (or any other SEO plugins) you have enabled. During set up, you will be able to import all of your existing SEO settings from Yoast to Rank Math.

Rank Math user wanting to switch to Yoast? To import your settings from Rank Math, simply head to the ‘Tools’ section of the ‘SEO’ tab and choose the ‘Import from other SEO plugins’ tab where you will find Rank Math as an option.

Power Up Your SEO Today

If you are interested in trying Yoast or Rank Math for your WordPress website, they are both available for free on the WordPress plugin library.

We have been using the Rank Math plugin as part of our SEO process for client websites to help them attain higher rankings in Google some time now.

To find out more about how we can help give your website an seo boost, get in touch with us today to arrange a free no-obligation consultation.

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