Hubspot reported that only 27% of visitors read a blog, while 73% will first skim the content. It’s a sign that your readers will likely bounce out of your page if your content isn't skimmable.
One of the underrated features that can significantly decrease your bounce rate and hold your readers' attention is the Table of Contents (TOC). It informs the readers what to expect from the article and helps them jump to relevant sections without having to scroll.
Despite posting insightful content, if your visitors are turning away without reading it, adding a TOC to your website might help them consume your content without being overwhelmed by its length.
From an SEO perspective, TOC can increase your readers’ average session duration, scroll depth, time on the page, bounce rate, etc., which helps you nurture the readers and generate brand awareness.
While you can add TOC manually in your content without a plugin or in-built TOC element in your tool stack, adding clickable links can be time-consuming and requires basic technical knowledge. Moreover, simply adding a TOC without hyperlinks does not help since readers can’t jump to the section of their choice with a click.
If you’re a blogger or publisher posting content on your website using WordPress, we listed the best TOC plugins that will help you auto-generate TOC for content at the site level and increase your content readability.
What to Lookout for When Selecting a Table of Content Plugin?
There are many plugins that allow you to add TOC to your content, but only a few offer simple, no-code solutions. In this section, we will explore the key elements to consider while choosing a TOC plugin.
Compatibility with the WordPress Theme
Compatibility issues with your WP theme may cause the TOC plugin to behave unpredictably on different devices or different screen sizes. It could result in overlapping or misaligned elements, making it difficult for users to navigate the content effectively and causing a poor reader experience.
Hence it is essential to choose a WordPress TOC plugin that's compatible with your theme, has recent updates, and allows you to customize the CSS. It should seamlessly blend with your website's theme and complement the overall design, color scheme, and typography.
Customization features like padding, font size, color, background, etc., allow you to define the appearance, layout, and positioning of the TOC according to your site and pages’ unique requirements.
A customizable TOC ensures that it aligns with the design and user interface of your website, providing a cohesive and intuitive browsing experience. Your plugin should ideally provide no-code customization options to enable you to change the aesthetics of your TOC without needing technical knowledge.
Works with Other Plugins
Conflicts between plugins can result in functionality issues, such as broken links or distorted formatting. Hence, it is important to ensure there are no issues when using multiple plugins together. If you face this problem, it's ideal to use a native plugin that comes as an add-on to your SEO plugin or toolkit, such as RankMath, will help you avoid this conflict.
If you're not familiar with coding or website development, it is best to consider plugins that make the integration process easy. These plugins eliminate the need for coding and provide a user-friendly interface for creating and customizing the TOC. They often come with intuitive drag-and-drop functionality and pre-designed templates that can be easily customized to match the blog's theme.
Best Table of Content Plugins for Publishers on WordPress
If you’re looking for a TOC WordPress plugin that checks all the above boxes, here are a few curated TOC plugins.
All the below TOC Plugins offer similar basic functions such as:
- Generate TOC automatically by detecting your header tags.
- Allows you to expand and collapse TOC
- Compatible with WordPress themes and CSS
- Provides ample customization options to modify TOC appearance
You also do not need any coding or technical knowledge to use any of the below TOC plugins.
1) Easy Table of Content
Easy Table of the Content plugin allows you to add aesthetically rich TOC to different types of posts, such as blogs, templates, landing pages, etc. The plugin is also compatible with Gutenberg, Classic Editor, Divi, Elementor, WPBakery Page Builder, and Visual Composer page editor.
It offers complete customization capabilities that allow you to change the TOC position, alignment, size, font color, background, broader color, sticky toggle, etc., without coding.
Key Features of Easy Table of Content
- Compatible with popular SEO plugins such as RankMath.
- Customize TOC style without any technical or coding knowledge.
- Offers both floating (on Pro plan) and sticky TOC options.
- Create and set default TOC design to maintain uniformity at the site level.
- Provides shortcode to insert default TOC in just a click to any page on the editor.
- Options to hide heading tags and change list format between decimal, bullets, and romans.
- Comparatively offers TOC addition to multiple post types for the free users.
- Personal - $49
- Multiple - $69
- Webmaster - $79
- Freelancer - $99
- Agency - $199
- Lifetime - $499
2) Joli Table of content
Joli Table of Content enables you to add, edit, and preview your TOC under one tab. As you customize and make changes to your TOC, the preview tab reflects the changes in real time, saving you from a trial and error process.
Similar to Easy Table of Content, this plugin provides ample customization options relating to margin, padding, fonts, color, border, etc. It is also compatible with all WordPress themes and even lets you customize the theme to align with your TOC.
Key Features of Joli Table of content
- Allows you to modify the content in TOC without affecting the original content.
- Offers custom theme solutions, CSS, and ready-to-use codes that give you more control over how your website or page looks.
- Create multiple TOC designs for different content types and access them in one click.
- Progress bar, floating, and slide-out TOC options are available but reserved for Pro users.
- Modify TOC positions and insert them in different sections of a page.
- Use number, roman, hexadecimal, and binary to list your heading in TOC, making it ideal to suit different types of content.
- The Pretty Hash function allows you to jump to a specific section of a page without having to scroll, which is especially helpful if you're publishing long-form content.
- Solo - $39.00
- Guru - $69.00
- Hero -139.99
3) Simple TOC
Simple TOC is a WordPress plugin that offers a developer-friendly customization option to insert TOC into your content. While you can simply auto-generate and add TOC to the content, if you have coding or technical knowledge, you can easily modify the TOC appearance to align with your overall branding.
Key Features of Simple TOC
- Add custom CSS to modify the look and format of the TOC.
- Supports Gutenberg editor, RankMath, and GeneratePress.
- Allows you to enable and disable particular heading tags at the site level.
- Set a minimal and maximum heading level to keep your TOC short and clear.
- Accordion menu option to present long-form content TOC in a way that doesn't overwhelm the readers with a long list of H-tags.
- Free tool
4) LuckyWP Table of Content
LuckyWP is a TOC plugin accessed via shortcode, Gutenberg block, and widget. This WordPress plugin is compatible with different plugins such as Elementor Page Builder, Beaver Builder, WPBakery Page Builder, RankMath, etc.,
It offers all basic functions like theme customization, TOC alignment, position, smooth scroll, toggle on and off, and much more that effectively meets the needs of every beginner with little to no coding knowledge.
Key Features of LuckyWP Table of Content
- Hierarchical and linear view supported by roman and decimal list format.
- Skip, hide, and rename the TOC label to customize it according to your requirements and theme.
- Pretty Hash option to enable easy navigation of long-form content.
- Offers expand and collapse options on TOC to let users prioritize readers' preferences.
- Set Heading depths to gain more control over TOC length.
5) Ultimate Blocks
Ultimate Blocks is a toolkit that offers multiple drag-and-drop widgets like Table of Contents. From adding a how-to schema block to a button, you can easily include relevant elements in your webpage in just a few clicks.
Some commonly used elements of Ultimate Blocks are review, call to action, constant toggle, testimonial, countdown block, etc. Accessing similar elements like TOC within one tool saves you the back and forth of handling multiple plugins to edit your content every time.
Key Features of Ultimate Blocks
- Offers multiple elements that are similar to TOC, allowing you to enhance your reader experience by building an aesthetically rich webpage.
- Works well with the WordPress themes and supports the Gutenberg editor.
- Provides all the basic customization options to edit and modify the TOC table.
- Single Site - $49 per month
- Unlimited Sites - $69 per month
- Lifetime - $349 per month
RankMath is a popular SEO plugin used by millions of WordPress users. It offers drag-and-drop elements and actionable SEO suggestions to help you rank higher in the SERP and boost your website performance.
If RankMath is your SEO tool, you do not have to install a TOC plugin separately. It has an in-built TOC widget, which you can drag and drop into your content to add TOC.
It also offers basic TOC configuration options like font, size, background color, heading depth, default TOCs, etc., to give you more control over your TOC design.
If you’re looking to minimize the use of individual plugins and prefer an all-in-one plugin that offers both SEO and additional features, such as TOC, breadcrumb, etc., RankMath is an ideal choice.
All the above WordPress plugin offers ample features for free, allowing first-time users to trial run the tool and upgrade to premium if necessary.
If you’re looking for a no-code plugin, it’s best to choose Easy TOC or Joli TOC.
In case you want to work with code and customize TOC according to your website, Simple TOC and LuckyWP are your ideal choices.
Ultimate Block and RankMath is an all-in-one tool that gives you access to TOC along with other additional elements to improve your webpage appearance.
- Agency - $45.75 per month (billed annually)
- Business - $19.08 per month (billed annually)
- Pro - $5.75 per month (billed annually)
While several TOC plugin options are available, it is important to consider factors such as features, customization options, compatibility, and user reviews before choosing a tool.
The plugins mentioned above offer a range of features, ease of use, and compatibility with various themes and plugins. Ultimately, the choice of plugin depends on your specific needs and preferences. So experiment with the free versions of each tool and choose the one that best suits your requirements.
If retaining audience on your website is one of your main objectives for adding a TOC plugin, you should also consider using on-site interactions like exit intent recommendations and sticky bar recommendations. These plugins allow you to display relevant articles that pique your reader's interest and help you to increase average session duration, retain readers on your website, and monetize their attention via ads. Know more about it here.