How To Make Categorising And Tagging Blog Posts More Powerful

What are tags and categories?

How do they work?

What are the best tags and categories to use on a blog post?

How do you make the categories and tags you’re using on your blog posts more influential? 

How to make the categories and tags on your blog posts more powerful

WordPress offers two different ways to organise blog posts; Categories and Tags. And every blogger should be using them. 

What are categories?

Categories act like groups where blog posts that have a connection with each other are stored.

For example, if you’re a travel blogger, you could have a category called The United Kingdom, of which you could list the sub-categories – Scotland, Wales, England and Northern Ireland. 

Every blog post should have at least one category.

Categories are important because they make finding specific blog posts easier to find for visitors to your blog (especially first-time visitors).

Let’s say I’ve just read a blog post you published about your Grandmother’s recipe for the world’s best apple pie. 

I want to find out if you’ve published other recipes for pies, and search for a recipe category. 

Unfortunately, you don’t have one, or you don’t categorise any of your posts (so they all fall under ‘uncategorised’).

I could search for the information (if you have a search bar on your blog), but I want to check out all your pie recipe posts, not just one. 

The only option I now have is to scroll through all your posts looking for pie recipes that may interest me. 

I don’t have enough time to do that, so I’ll probably search for pie recipes elsewhere.

It’s likely that I’ll never return to visit your blog because you don’t categorise your blog posts.

Adding a category to your blog post is simple to do. 

How to add a category to your blog post

  • While drafting a blog post, you’ll see a toolbar on the righthand side of the page. 
  • This is where you can add categories.
Where to add categories to your blog posts

For more information about adding categories to your blog, click here

It’s also a good idea to do some housekeeping of the categories you have on your blog. 

For example, delete categories that are no longer being used. Update categories and give them a new name if you think something works better. 

How to maintain the categories on your blog

  • On the dashboard of your blog, click on Manage and Settings.
#bloggingtips #blogging #bloggingadvice #WordPress
Click on ‘Manage’ and ‘Settings’
  • On the Settings page, click on Writing.
Click on ‘Writing’
  • Click anywhere inside the  Categories‘ box. 
Click anywhere in the “Categories’ box
  • A page will appear showing all the categories you have and how many blog posts are stored under each one.
What a list of categories look like

Any sub-categories will show under each category. My blog post How To Add A Sub-Category To Your WordPress Blog details how to create and add them to your blog.   

  • To edit, delete, views posts or set a category as your default category, click on the three vertical dots next to the number.
Click on the three vertical dots to make changes

You may have noticed in one of the above images that I have set my default category to ‘uncategorised.’ Doing this makes it easy for me to search for any blog posts I’ve not categorised.

What about adding tags?

Like categories, tags can be added to blog posts in the toolbar that appears on the righthand side of a draft post. 

Where to add ‘tags’ on your blog posts

Generally, tags do not need to have a connection with each other but, when used correctly, can generate lots of extra traffic to a blog post.

Tags act as the keywords you think somebody would add to the WordPress search bar when looking for specific blog posts. 

For example, somebody searching for blogging tips may add ‘blogging’, ‘blogging tips’, blogging advice’ blogging help’ in the search bar. 

When adding tags to your blog post, think of words you would use if searching for the post.

Check out the tags I’ve added for this blog post. They appear at the end of the post.  

Each tag should be separated with a comma or by pushing ‘Enter’ on your keyboard.

Important information – Did you know this…?

The cardinal rule of tagging on WordPress.com is you should never add more than a total of 15 tags and categories (combined) to your post; otherwise, it won’t show up in the WordPress Reader.

This cap is used to keep out spam blogs — it means that you need to ensure that your tags are only those that are most relevant to your post.

Don’t tag your blog post with words that have nothing to do with the subject of the post.

15 tags is still a lot, but you don’t need to use all of them.

As a general rule, I add no more than three categories and between six and eight tags to my blog posts. 

Tags containing more than one word (such as ‘Blogging tips’) act as one tag word. 

As with categories, it’s essential to also do some housekeeping of the tags you’ve used on your blog. 

How to delete and update tags

  • As we did earlier with categories, on the dashboard of your blog, click on Manage and Settings.
  • On the Settings page, click on Writing and then on the ‘Tags‘ box.
Click anywhere in the ‘Tags’ box
  • A page will appear showing all of your tags and how many blog posts contain each tag.
  • To edit, delete, and views posts containing a tag word, click on the three vertical dots next to the number.

Conclusion

  • All blog posts should be categorised and tagged.
  • Categorising and tagging your blog posts makes your blog user-friendly. As a result, people are likely to keep coming back.
  • Not categorising your blog posts means they get mixed up and not easy to sort through.
  • If you don’t categorise your blog posts, how will people find them?
  • When tagging posts, think of keywords that other people will use when searching for your blog post.
  • Don’t use tag-words that have nothing to do with the subject of your blog post.
  • WordPress usersNever add more than 15 tags and categories (combined) to your posts, otherwise they won’t show up on the WordPress Reader.
  • Remember to perform regular housekeeping of categories and tags on your blog. Keep them tidy and in order.
  • Adding the right tags to your blog posts will result in more readers finding them. More readers means higher stats, more comments and new followers.

What about you?

  • Do you have any tips for adding categories and tags to your blog posts?
  • Do you have any rules for how many tags and categories you add?
  • Do you categorise and add tags to all your blog posts? If not, why not?
  • Which tags-words work best for you?
  • Is there anything you’d like to add about adding categories and tags to blog posts that I’ve not mentioned?

Join the discussion by leaving me a comment that I can respond to with more than just a ‘thank you.’


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How To Add A Sub-Category To Your WordPress Blog Post

Thank you to Carol Taylor, who blogs at ‘Retired? No One Told Me!’, for asking me a question about blogging after reading my recent blog post ‘Do You Have A Question About Blogging…’

#blogging #bloggingtips #wordpress

Here’s Carol question in full.

I went back to Carol to confirm that what she was referring to was a sub-category being added to a category. It was!

First of all, let me start by saying that it’s essential to ensure that all blog posts are categorised. Why? Because it’s a way of helping visitors to your blog find the information they’re looking for.

Here’s an example. I’ve just read a blog post you published about your Grandmother’s recipe for the world’s best chocolate chip cookies. I want to find out if you’ve published any other recipes, and search for a recipe category. Unfortunately, you don’t have one, or you don’t categorise any of your posts (so they all fall under ‘uncategorised’).

I could search for the information (if you have a search bar on your blog), but I want to check out all your recipe posts, not just one. The only option is to now scroll through all your posts looking for recipes that may interest me. The clock is ticking, and I’ve got lots more to do…

Adding a category to your post is simple to do. In the settings menu of your blog post, you’ll find the place where you can add categories. If you already have categories, you’ll see them there. The following screenshot is taken from my blog.

#bloggingtips #blogging #howto

For Carol’s question, we are going to add a new sub-category for my new book, ‘More Glimpses’, to the category ‘Glimpses’, which I already have as a category.

The first thing we need to do is create ‘More Glimpses’ as a category. To do this, we need to click on the ‘Add New Category’ link.

#bloggingtips #blogging #howto

Next, add ‘More Glimpses’ in the ‘New Category Name‘ box.

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Just under the ‘Add New Category‘ box, you will see a ‘Parent Category‘ box. This is where we can turn the new category, we’ve just created, into a sub-category.

#bloggingtips #blogging #howto

Click on the little arrows in the right-hand side of the “Parent Category‘ box to display a list of all your categories.

#bloggingtips #blogging #howto

Select the category ‘Glimpses’ and click on it.

‘Glimpses’ now appears in the ‘Parent Category‘ box.

#bloggingtips #blogging #howto

Next, click on the ‘Add New Category‘ button.

#blogging #bloggingtips #

‘More Glimpses’ now appears as a sub-category under the category ‘Glimpses’.

#blogging #bloggingtips #howto

Why are sub-categories important?

Let’s say you’re a travel blogger and are visiting the countries in the UK – England, Scotland, Northern-Ireland, and Wales. You could have ‘UK’ as your main category, and England, Scotland, Northern-Ireland, and Wales as sub-categories.

I want to thank Carol for asking her question and hope that my answer has helped her.

Blogger and writer Carol Taylor

Connect with Carol.

Blog

Twitter

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MeWe

Carol’ s early attempts at writing have been published in two separate anthologies. Her new cookbook will be out quite soon.

As her direction in blogging has changed, and now includes healthy eating and waste, she wanted to share the following post which she feel reflects her more at this time.

Healthy Eating …Waste not! Want Not!

Do you use categories and sub-categories on your blog? If you have any further questions about categories or sub-categories, leave them in the comments section.

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