Even if you’re a brand new WordPress user, you’ve probably heard of the All In One SEO Pack plugin. You might even be thinking of installing it. Well, before you do that, let me give you some advice. All In One SEO was the first SEO plugin I ever used. I installed it on my first blog, I recommended it to clients and installed it on every blog I owned since I started blogging. I absolutely loved the plugin. It did exactly what it was supposed to do, and it was simple to use. For a while I never even considered using another SEO plugin.lean more about SEO plugins at https://www.wpbeginner.com/showcase/9-best-wordpress-seo-plugins-and-tools-that-you-should-use/
Other SEO Plugins
Somewhere around my third month of blogging, I decided to check out other SEO plugins. I just wanted to see what else was out there. I did my research and learned that the blogging world was divided over two plugins – All in One SEO and WordPress SEO by Yoast.
I’d say more than 90% of bloggers who use WordPress, use one of these two plugins. Knowing this, I decided to take a look at Yoast’s plugin. Remember, I’ve only been blogging for three months or so at this point. After installing Yoast, I was shocked at the complexity of it. It was multiple tabs of configurations and settings I’d never seen before.
I spent about fifteen minutes with it before I was certain about my decision to stay with All In One SEO.
In April 2013 All In One SEO rolled out a major update to its free and pro versions. The update was a complete makeover from top to bottom. The menu options changed, the configurations were moved around and more features were added.
It completely changed everything I loved about the plugin. I understand things change and the web evolves, I get that, I really do. But the All In One SEO Pack lost the thing that had originally made it so great. Its simplicity was gone.
April 22, 2013 in my mind, is the day All in One SEO Pack died.
Here’s the plugin before the update.
As I said, I understand things need to change sometimes. Google makes constant updates to the way it ranks websites so it’s only natural that All In One SEO needed an update. Some of the new features were really nice to have too.
The social meta feature was something the old All In One didn’t have. With social media being so popular this was a nice feature to have. It gave users the ability to have an entirely new description and image show up when your content is shared on social media.
The search results preview was another new feature that was nice to have. Other SEO plugins already had this so All In One needed to step up here. This feature gave users the ability to see what their page might look like in the search results. This is meant to give you an idea of how your titles and descriptions will look in the search results.
While this is a nice feature it’s not accurate. All In One shows your preview based on character lengths of your title and description. Google no longer shows titles and descriptions this way.
Now, it’s based on pixel width, so it varies depending on the the letters you use. For the most part though, All in one’s preview is fine, it’s just not always accurate.
Community and Support
If you’re thinking of using the free version of All in One SEO Pack then you’ll have to find support within the WordPress community. You won’t have access to the All in One support forum until you purchase the premium version of the plugin.
The support forum for premium users is less-than-ideal. When I bought the premium version I really expected much more. When you need help, you go to the forum, make your post and wait.
You will never get an answer in less than 24 hours.For most support forums that’s okay but not one I paid to have access to.
In addition to slow responses, the forum isn’t very active. The members aren’t engaged at all.I guess you can’t really blame them when the owner and staff members aren’t engaged either.
Don’t get me wrong, they do their job, but that’s it – there’s no ‘above and beyond’ happening here. When the recent security flaw was found, premium users didn’t get a solution until the next day. That’s just terrible, I expected more from them.
The biggest problem I have with the support forum is that you can’t ask an SEO question. You can ask about the plugin, but asking for SEO advice is like asking them for their first born. They do not want to help with this stuff. I understand everyone’s needs are going to be a little different. But moderators just point you to documentation that only confuses you more.
Why not have a blog where you discuss this kind of stuff?
You sell an SEO plugin for WordPress and you don’t have a blog, seriously??
Basically, the support forum for All in One SEO Pack is a terrible experience. I paid for access and it’s the last place I go when I need help. The vibe isn’t welcoming to say the least.
The support forum will cost you $79 per year. Save your money, it’s not worth it.
Do I still use All In One SEO Pack?
Yes, and no. I’m no longer recommending the plugin to clients and my newest blog doesn’t use it. For now, I still use it here on Media Fresh Press for a few reasons.
- I’m still learning how to export all my preferences into another SEO plugin.
- I’m a little concerned about switching until I know exactly what I’m doing.
- I want to be sure I completely understand the new SEO plugin I’m going to use.
And if I’m totally honest, I don’t want to switch, I was a big fan of All in One SEO for a long time.
I’m hoping the issues I have will be resolved soon but I’m not holding my breath. I will be switching this blog to a new SEO plugin very soon. There will be a complete review posted when I’m done.
Still thinking of using All In One SEO?
If you’re still considering using All in One then I’d recommend sticking with the free version. The premium version has some nice features but they aren’t necessary.
Stick with the free version, at least for a while, then move up if you feel like you need to. Plenty of people use the free version with no problems at all. My biggest mistake was buying the premium version. If I had stuck with the free version my expectations would’ve stayed the same.
Buying the pro version caused me to expect a level of simplicity with the plugin itself, and some actual support from the forum. Apparently that was too much to ask for. Fortunately, I have other places to go for support and advice. Being a member of an exclusive online community has it’s benefits, most of all support.
When I have a question, I just ask another member. It’s a nice luxury to have. The community is still accepting some members. You can read my review and decide if it’s for you. You get a free starter membership with 24/7 live support and tons of training. Not just SEO training either. There’s tutorials about social media, YouTube, WordPress and a lot more. If you have any questions feel free to leave a comment below. Thanks for reading!