When creating new blog posts, there are two things you’ll want to ensure you add to every single post: categories and tags. Both of these are critical, both to keep visitors oriented, and for search engine optimization.
Categories are a more conventional way of organizing information. You can stack your categories, so you have categories within categories, if you’d like. I’ve always thought that categories work well for organized logical minds. Because of this, I’d suggest thinking carefully about your category structure when you start writing, and establish your primary categories from the get-go. Think about these questions:
- What are the main topics you’re going to be writing about?
- Are there different ways you might want to use information?
- Are ther some things you’ll want to share to social media channels, and others which you won’t?
- Do you have more than one business, or more than one group who’ll be reading your blog?
Answering these questions early, and creating a succinct category structure will ensure your site stays organized. If you do need to add new categories, review your existing ones and ensure you won’t be confusing visitors by adding a new one.
Tags are a more creative way of organizing blog posts, and they are fantastic for search engines. You can add as many tags to a post as you like, and visitors can use these to peruse similar articles. By clicking on the tag they’re interested in, they’ll see all the posts with that tag. This may lead them to another tag, and another, reading all the information on your blog that they’re interested in.
Tags can then be displayed using a tag cloud (see image at right), and there are some really cool dynamic tag cloud plugins. They will also display on the bottom of every post.
One easy way of getting started with tagging is to use a plug-in like Simple Tags. This will let you check with Yahoo to see what words or phrases are popular with visitors to their search engine. By adding those tags to the post, you’re more likely to be found when someone uses that search. You can also check the tags you’ve used in previous posts, to see if they apply.
After you’ve run this tool, manually add in any important phrases which are missing. You want to add any tags which are important, but try to reuse the same tags over and over, as this will reinforce your expertise on the subject, and tie those posts together for visitors.
I hope I’ve inspired you to get your blog organized, so you can help visitors to find what they’re looking for (and some great things they weren’t!) on your website.