WordPress provides each user with the option to utilize both categories and tags to help keep their website from becoming overly cluttered or difficult to navigate. It is important to understand how to properly take advantage of both of these options, especially if you want your website or blog to become well-known.
What is the Difference between Tags and Categories?
Categories should be used as a general overview of a topic. For example, if your website is about pop culture entertainment, you might have one category for television shows and another one for movies. It is best to keep your total number of categories to approximately half a dozen to keep your website’s layout from becoming overly complicated. Therefore, you would most likely not create categories for individual shows or even for specific genres.
Tags, on the other hand, can and should be used liberally. In the above example, you can use a tag to designate the specific show that you are discussing on that page, along with listing the show’s genre and any other relevant information. By providing all of these details, it will be easy for visitors and yourself to look through all of your posts that discuss a specific topic.
Are Tags Necessary for My Site?
Tags not only help your visitors access information more quickly, but they are also picked up by search engines to help determine your site’s quality ranking. In other words, you should use tags on every WordPress website regardless of the site’s content.
Is it Possible to Use Too Many Tags?
Even though you should feel free to utilize WordPress’ tags feature liberally, it is important to make sure that you do not overdo it from a search engine standpoint. After all, if you have more tags on a post than the total number of words that are in that post, your page is going to look like spam to most search engines. A lot of your visitors will also be confused or annoyed by an excessive amount of tags, so make sure that you do not go overboard.
Selecting Quality Tags
If you wanted to select the proper tags for a post about the television show “Dexter”, for example, you would start with the basics: list the show’s name, the network that airs it, the show’s genre, at least one of the main actors and a tag that explains a bit about the show such as “serial killer” or “detective”. Once these tags are in place, you should evaluate your post to see if anything specific sticks out. For instance, if your post provides information about episodes that have not aired yet, you should consider using the “spoilers” tag. The combination of “Dexter” and “spoilers” will do well on a search engine, and that is likely to send a lot of traffic your way. To keep things simple, you would not take the time to list every single actor in the series or every word you can think of that is synonymous with horror or murder.
Once the correct tags are in place, your visitors will be able to click on a specific tag to see every post that you have ever made that contained that tag. This easy search method makes it easy for visitors to find content that they are interested in, and it also ensures that you will keep visitors on your site for a longer period of time.
Byline: Jackson Hathorn has seen the numerous benefits of proper WordPress tags for businesses, as easier web navigation can help companies expand into Global Forwarding, and reach disparate consumer bases across the world.