Using Tags

Tags may not be so useful as categories. WordPress features both and most blogging applications feature something similar.  They are navigational aides.  There are usually more tags than categories and posts might have several whilst they typically have 1 or 2 categories.  Using tags offers more detailed information about a post’s content and help visitors find relevant posts.

Categories work because there are relatively few of them. They can be nested and used in navigation. Tags can’t be organised like categories but there is no practical limit to the number of tags.

If you click on one of the tags listed at the end of a post, it will open a page listing all the posts that share the same tag. Also if you search for something on a site, if it exists as a tag all those posts will appear in the search results.

Things to Watch Out for Using Tags

Tags can get out of hand. Large numbers are not a great problem but for example, do I use “blog” or “blogs” for my posts about blogging (or “blogging” for that matter)?   These 2 or 3 names should probably be a single tag. But then which do I choose? What are my visitors most likely to search for?

In the post editor there is a useful box in the far right-hand column, headed Tags. When you start to type a word in the box, type slowly because once you make a start, all the tags containing that sequence of characters will appear. You can check the tags you’ve used before.

If you click on “Choose from the most used tags” you get a cloud of tag names, the most frequent ones bigger. The least frequent ones don’t appear in the cloud. But it is an inspiration sometimes to glance through it.

If you click Tags in the left hand column subcategory of Posts, you will see a similar cloud and then below it the means to create a new tag. You are unlikely to use this as you can easily create new tags within the post editor.

Click to share this post!

About the Author

I've been a community development worker since the early 1980s in Tyneside, Teesside and South Yorkshire. I've also worked nationally for the Methodist Church for eight years supporting community projects through the church's grants programme. These days I am developing an online community development practice combining non-directive consultancy, strategic management, participatory methods and development work online and offline. If you're interested contact me for a free consultation.

Leave a Reply 1 comment

Making Blog Posts Accessible - Community Web Consultancy - December 14, 2016 Reply

[…] site and you need some way to help readers navigate them. I’m assuming you use categories and tags and I have written about the basics of using these.  However categories and tags alone are not […]

Leave a Reply: