Using categories and tags can improve your website’s organization and help readers find the content they are interested in.
Do me a favor… Go see how many posts you have in the “Uncategorized” category. It’s fine. I’ll wait.
If you answer is any more than “Zero”, then you can instantly improve your website by simply categorizing your posts!
Categories (and tags for that matter) help organize the information on your website, allow you to quickly show readers relevant content, and help search engines understand the structure of your website.
How to Add Tags & Categories
Categories and tags are taxonomies that are built into WordPress core— assigning them to your posts is simple!
In the right hand side of your post editing screen you’ll see a meta box for both Categories and Tags.
Categories come in the form of a selection box, you can assign as many categories to a post as you’d like (but, really… don’t add a ton), and categories can have parent/child relationships.
Tags work by entering a tag by typing in a word. Like categories you can add as many tags as you’d like, but tags do not have any parent/child relationship capabilities like categories.
It’s likely you’ll want to use both categories and tags on your posts.
Once you have a nice collection of posts on your website, you can create category archive pages which will display all the posts within the same category. This is great for users, because they will have the ability to spend time on the content they are interested in— so long as you categorize and tag it logically.
Category & Tagging Strategy
The theory and strategy behind effective categorizing and tagging can get really deep— that’s not the purpose of this tutorial though.
Instead, I’m going to give you a basic overview of the best practices.
Use categories for broad groupings of topics
Categories are generally used for broad groups of grouping. For instance, if you had a blog about the music industry, you might use categories for the genre of music.
Fine-tune with tags
Tags typically get much more specific than categories. Using the same music industry blog example (where the category was the genre), you could use tags for a band name, a record label, or even the year music was released.