How To Increase Yoast Readability Score?

Blogging is one of the best and easiest and popular ways to earn money while sitting at home, but it isn’t as easy as it seems. If you’re blogging just for fun, then you don’t need to worry about the technicalities, but if you’re blogging for earning money, then you need to create creative great content. And along with that, you get more readers you need to have a better Yoast readability Score, there many ways to get a better readability score at Yoast, and below I am going to discuss in detail on how to increase your Yoast readability score.

How To Increase Yoast Readability Score

If you are a person who is not going to read every world then you are not alone, most of the people on the internet are the same. Today no one has the time to read every article word to word and according to a research, we’ve come to know that around 16% of the people on the internet do actually read the whole content word by word. Therefore, it is safe to say that Yoast SEO readability score is definitely in part a response to all that data.

Yes, there are a ton of different tools and tests out there which claims to measure the content’s readability score, but Yoast content analysis feature is by far the one that almost every WordPress user is familiar with.

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Having said that, I am going to completely dedicate this entire post in exploring the particular feature of Yoast. I will tell you in detail that why you should care about readability, what is the science behind Yoast SEO score, and finally how you can improve your very own Yoast SEO readability score?

Why do you want readable content?

You can define Readability as “how easily can someone read a piece of content.”

Most of the people on the internet don’t have the time, and they are usually multitasking that is why they won’t go through your content word by word. That is why you have to make your content easy to read, as easy as you can so that people can quickly comprehend what your content has to say.

Just because of that reason, readable content is about improving the usability of your site. Nielsen Norman Group dug into this issue with concrete data and found that the single two biggest contributors to usability when it came down to content readability were the following:

Concise texts simply mean just plain and fewer words.

The scan-able layout simply means the proper use of subheadings, bolding, lists and more.

Yes, you might feel that isn’t the way you usually write, and the English professor who lives in you might as well cringe. But this is important if you want to make your website more efficient and increase the overall number of people who read and go through your content. Therefore you need to accept the fact that people in real scan the web pages, rather than reading them in complete detail that is why you should work with this reality rather than waste your time fighting it.

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The famous Neil Patel and Brian Dean of Backlinko have taken this concept to the extreme level by writing almost exclusively in just single sentence paragraphs:

Readability score

Does Readability Affect SEO?

Still today no one really knows that does readability affect SEO or not, but there have been many speculations that say it does and after all, it is Google that we are talking about. Therefore we should ask a Google engineer if we want to know that true answer.

While that is true, there are many indirect ways in which you can make your content readable, and it also can boost your site’s ranking. It isn’t hard to believe that the readable content is more likely to

  • Incorporate more natural inbound links
  • Have a less bounce rate and a better time on page
  • Get shared on all social media platforms more often

What is Yoast Readability Score?

A quick crash course for the uninitiated

If we look at the meta box that is attached to every post then By default it has two tabs. First, you have the default SEO tab, that is directly focusing on measuring how well optimized your text really is for a focused keyword.

And then, you have the Readability tab

It is there to rank your content on multiple varieties of criteria which will result in a simple rating solely based on the same scale as Yoast’s SEO analysis. Which is:

  • Good
  • OK
  • Needs Work

How can Yoast Determine Your Yoast SEO Readability Score?

Yoast SEO readability tab does attempt to sum this whole concept up into a single score just by looking at 6 different readability checks:

1. Sentence length, that is, if more than 25% of your sentences are over 20 words long, you will lose points.

2. Paragraph length, that is, if your paragraphs are longer than 150 words, you will lose points.

3. Subheading usage, that is, if you go more than 300 words without a subheading, you will lose points.

4. Passive voice, that is, if more than 10% of your sentences are written in passive voice (!), you will lose points.

5. Transition words, that is, if you don’t use transition words such as “and,” “because,” etc. in at least 30% of your sentences, you will lose points.

6. Flesch reading ease, that is, if you go below 60 on the Flesch reading ease test, you will lose points.

And that is not all; you will also face trouble if you use more than three sentences in a single row that start with the same word, although this check does not show up by default.

The first five criteria might feel familiar. And I don’t think you don’t need me to explain the concept of sentence length. But I’m pretty sure that there is a good chance you haven’t heard of the sixth test that is the Flesch reading ease test.

The Flesch reading ease test in real calculates a score that is based on the number of words per sentence, and on the number of syllables per word as well. According to this test, higher scores are viewed as easier to read.

How to Get a Good Yoast Readability Score?

We have discussed above in detail about the rules of Yoast SEO readability, and here we will discuss that how can you actually improve your overall Yoast readability score starting from OK or Needs Work right to the Good? or whenever you see a prompt like ‘readability needs improvement’!

Before I go down to the tips and hacks, let me make it clear, Do not be a slave to the Yoast readability score.

For example, if you are writing and addressing to an academic audience, you are probably never going to get a high Flesch score, and neither should you necessarily try to. And if a few situations the passive voice becomes completely unavoidable and is actually useful.

Try to make everything green as much as you can, but accept the fact that there are a few situations where it is ok to break some rules

Tip #1: Break Up Sentences at the Transition Words

The sentence length does affect your overall readability score both directly as well as indirectly (as part of the whole Flesch test), it is one of the biggest areas where you can improve your score.

Just writing plain, simple and shorter sentences is only one way. But another way is to break your sentences by adding a full stop at transition words.

Above I have given an example by breaking the sentence at but which is a transition word.

I could have just as easily added in a comma and tacked it on another clause. But by breaking the sentence into two parts, it makes it more scannable and along that it also improves your Yoast readability score.

But yes, do watch out that you don’t go overboard and turn your entire content into a choppy mess.  Remember, Moderation is key.

Tip #2: Use H3 Headings along with H2 headings for better readability

Yoast does penalize you for writing more than 300 words without a proper subheading and subheadings are important as they really make your text much more readable, you have to love the H3 heading, as it will greatly help you in getting a better readability score.

H3 headings are best when you don’t necessarily need to break into a whole new section or when the point isn’t unique enough that it requires its own H2 heading, but still, a breakage would seem nice and easy to read into its own contained section. For example, “What is Yoast Readability Score?” is the main H2 heading while everything that follows after like how to improve your readability score. And a quick crash course are H3 headings, and if you further need to feel that your content should have more divisions then you can always use bold writing, that pretty much acts as the H4 heading, that is what I do.

Tip #3: Passive Voice shouldn’t Be Used

As I have said above, passive voice has its own uses. But when you are not intentionally using it to prove a particular point, passive voice makes your content look confusing, that is why it is better to use clear and concise sentences rather than prolonged and confusing sentences.

But you don’t need to check every sentence for passive voice, as there is a small eye icon under the readability tab where you can just click on that eye icon, and it will display all the areas where you have used passive voice.

The simplest way to avoid passive voice is to us short and clear sentences. When you don’t break sentences, then you passive voice becomes unavoidable.

Tip #4: Use easy language and Simple Words

If you want your Flesch score to increase and make your content widely accessible, then using so-called high vocabulary and dictionary words is definitely a bad idea, what you need to do is use as simple words as you can, if you encounter a difficult word then replace it with a simple synonym.

This is a divisive concept, and some people call it the dumbing down. However, shorter words are just easier to understand.

Wrapping it up

So above I have told you how to get a good and improve readability score in Yoast. There are areas where you need to look at writing. You need to be concise and clear, make short sentences. Break them by using a full stop. Then you need to add subheading, which will make your text much more appealing and easy to read. Next, you need to ditch passive voice as it complicates your sentences and makes the reader confusing. A small error that people usually make is starting sentences with the same word; it also cuts down your score, try mixing thing ups and don’t start sentences with the same word, when you start two consecutive sentences by the same word, Yoast slashes your score.

A simple tip for getting a good Yoast readability score is just to write simple, use simple language and always think that you are addressing primary students, by using simple language you have a much larger audience and a higher Flesch score.

There are many editor software out there that fixes your content. But I wouldn’t recommend them as by the time you will be a slave to that software. Therefore it is best to write organic and proofread the content yourself and if you still feel like your content isn’t up to the mark, Yoast will help you with the rest, as it fixes all the errors that were in your content.

Always try to be original and simple, these are the two secrets of getting a higher Yoast SEO score. Do let us know what you think about the article above, try applying some of these tricks while you are writing as I assure you that they will greatly help you in getting a higher Yoast score. If you want to add something are have any questions then feel free to ask us in the comments section below.