WordPress Tags Explained For Beginners: What Are They & Why Are They Important
What Are WordPress Tags: When it comes to maintaining a blog, categorization and proper organization of your content are very important. You may not realize its importance if you have just started your blog, because there is not much content. But as the content increases, users will find it difficult to search and find the content they are looking for. This is when you will feel the need of proper organization and categorization of your content.
WordPress offers two default tools, Tags and Categories, for this purpose. In this article, I will tell you everything you need to know about WordPress Tags.
What Are WordPress Tags & Why Are They Important
You must have used or at least seen “hashtags” in Instagram, Twitter and even Facebook. What happens when you click on a particular hashtag in a post?
You get to see all the other posts where this particular hashtag has been used. This is exactly the role that WordPress Tags play.
It helps in categorizing the content which are of same type.
Let’s say, I am writing a post on “Image Optimization For SEO”. Here, I can keep the Category as “SEO Tutorials”. Then I can give a couple of tags which are relevant to the post like: “Importance Of Images In Blog Posts”, “Featured Image”, etc.
Now, let’s say, I have written another blog post, this time on “Importance Of Images In Blog Posts”. Here, I keep the Category as “Basic Blogging Concepts” and Tags as “Featured Image”, and “Blog Images”.
Now if a user clicks on the “Featured Image” tag they will be able to see both the articles (or any other article where “Featured Image” has been added as a tag) that contain that particular tag, making it easier for users to find all the relevant information.
As you can see, WordPress Tags are in-built tools to categorize content and find out all the blog posts belonging to a particular topic. Basically, it helps in better accessibility of your blog posts.
Features Of WordPress Tags
WordPress Tags have the following features:
- Tags, unlike WordPress Categories, are not hierarchical in nature. This means, Tags don’t have any Parent Tags.
- Unlike WordPress Categories, Tags are not compulsory for blog posts. You can choose not to use any tag in a particular post.
- Tags are more specific than Categories. As you can see in the above example, the two categories, namely, SEO Tutorials and Basic Blogging Concepts can cover a wide range of topics. The tags, on the other hand, are more specific and have a close relation with the topic of the respective posts.
- You can add as many tags as you want in a post.
How To Add Tags To Your Blog Post
In WordPress, you can add tags to your blog posts from the post editor. As shown in the image below, you can add tags in the Tags Box in the right side of the screen. Using comma in between, you can add multiple tags at the same time. Or you can add them one after the other.
In order to re-use the tags in relevant posts in future, just start typing in the name of the Tag in the box and they will appear below. You just have to click on them and they will be added.
WordPress also offers a second method to add tags. Just go to Posts > Tags. Here, in addition to adding new tags, you can also manage older tags, like editing their URL.
SEO Practices For WordPress Tags
The best practices while adding tags are as under:
- Use keyword rich tags. Research extensively (keyword research) before you decide on what tags to add to your post. Remember, it is very important as keywords determine the tags.
- Do not use the same name for both Category and Tag.
- Make sure you have at least 4-5 blog posts for every tag you add.
- Although there is no fixed limit of the number of tags that can be added to a particular post, adding too many tags will complicate things unnecessarily and impact the accessibility of the blog. So, do not add too many tags.
- While humans, i. e. users are benefited by tags as they help in finding all the posts using a particular tag, to crawlers tags give an impression that there are duplicate content in your site. This happens because in addition to the blog posts being listed in the main archive page as well as each post’s own URL, a separate archive page is created consisting of all the blog posts using a particular tag. It is, therefore, recommended that you use a noindex directive for your tags so that Google doesn’t index them.
How To Tell Google Not To Index Your Tag Archives
If you have installed the free Yoast SEO Plugin, follow the steps as under:
- From the sidebar of your WordPress dashboard click on SEO.
- Click on “Features”.
- Enable “No Advanced Settings For Authors”.
- Click on “Save Changes”.
- Go to SEO > Search Appearance >Taxonomies
- In the Tags section, click on “No” under “Show Tags In Search Results?“
- Click on “Save Changes”.
Tags are important. Make sure you add them and do it in the right manner as explained above.
I hope this article on WordPress Tags helps you. Feel free to comment below if you have any questions. I will reply at the earliest.