We're planning a new site and looking for opinion on WordPress SEO plugins. Are they really THAT useful, or are we better off skipping the customization and doing it by hand?
I am very familiar with the leading SEO plugins out there for WordPress and have to admit, they make things easy but leave a trail of optimization footprints in their wake. (code comment about using seo plugin versions, etc) We have used Yoast or AIOSEO for many years and sometimes wonder if it's like raising the "We Do SEO" flag over our site.
We know Google and Matt Cutts groups SEO and Spam in the same sentence, are we better off with nothing at all?