When using WordPress, it’s important to understand what categories and tags are for and how they are different from each other. There are a number of questions surrounding these taxonomies. Once you have created a post, you can assign categories and tags to the same. Therefore, you should always understand how to use each of them.
Here are a few things you need to know so that there is no confusion when it comes to creating categories and tags.
Posts In WordPress Can be Grouped In A Broad Or Narrow Way
Categories are for broad grouping of posts while tags are for narrow grouping. From the user’s point of view, categories play a bigger role. They tell the users what your blog is all about and allow them to navigate easily. Tags function as the index words for your WordPress site.
WordPress Categories Are Hierarchical But Tags Are Not
Since categories have a hierarchy, you can also create different sub-categories for each category. That is why categories can be used by users or visitors to find the content that’s a good match for their specific needs.
WordPress Categories Are Obligatory – Tags Are Not
Another big difference between categories and tags is that the former can’t be ignored. Every post that you create and publish on your site must fall under a specific category. If you don’t assign a category to the post, it will go under the ‘Uncategorized’ category by default. Tags, on the other hand, are optional; you can choose to create or leave them.
How Many Categories Or Tags Can You Create In WordPress?
This is again an important question. Since categories are for broad grouping of posts, you should not create too many categories. Even when you have a WordPress site that’s very complex, you should keep a check on the number of categories you create. But you can always create as many tags as you may want for further grouping.
Can A Post Be Assigned To Multiple Categories In WordPress?
Many people have a doubt as to whether they can assign multiple categories to a single post. Depending on the nature of content, you may sometimes find it feasible to put one post under more than one category. If you really believe that it will help the user, you can certainly do it. However, you should remember to use the ‘noindex, follow’ option to avoid duplicate content issues. You can do it easy by using a WordPress plugin like the WordPress SEO by Yoast.
What Is A Tag Cloud?
While it’s always recommended to list all the categories on your site for easy navigation, you can list the tags as ‘clouds’. You may have noticed a tags cloud on many WordPress sites. The cloud shows a large number of tags in different colours and sizes. Whether you want to place a tags cloud on your site or not is completely up to you.
Now that you understand the difference between categories and tags, you can make well-informed decisions as to when and how to use them on your WordPress site.