Support » Fixing WordPress » The Benefits/Uses of Categories vs Tags?

  • I don’t understand the relative merits of categories and tags. Categories make perfect sense and are essential for aggregating related content. What do tags do?


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  • Okay, categories = Articles, News, Random Thoughts

    Say you post something into news, relating to i dunno .. Paris Hilton and George Bush

    Now you set two tags on the news post: Paris Hilton and another tag George Bush

    When you click on the News category it will give you a list of all things posted in the news.

    When you click on the tag Paris Hilton it will give you a list of all posts that have Paris Hilton in it.

    Think of it heirarchal. You don’t want to have an upteen amount of catagories with each individual person’s name your referencing do you? .. You *can* but that’s just a bit silly.

    Keep your categories to a minimum and only reference with tags the things you want to reference. In your tags you don’t want to put a ‘news’ tag in there when it’s already posted in the news category.

    Please do not make tags that associate with every post as well.

    If you keep to this method style you can do query_posts in particular categories for tags that are alike. So you can do ‘related posts’ and other good data gathering stuff.

    “Categories make perfect sense and are essential for aggregating related content.” Is what you say. Sure it does, absolutely but what are you going to do with the data afterwards?

    Having all categories and checkmarking all that apply gives too wide of a range of descrepenancies(sp?) when finding related topics.

    study it

    ^ way bad example of using tags since he doesnt use any with a horrible site design nothing to study here folks, move along =)

    Thread Starter pab1953


    Thanks for thoughts and tips. I think I understand it a little better: Categories might be seen as a top-level form of post classification while Tags refine that classification.

    But what about sub-categories? Don’t they exist? Where do they fit in?

    Thanks Frumph, so what about for website optimization? Which is better? Should I always use both. We’ve already started with categories, I’m just wondering if I should go back and add tags to everything for the best optimization with search engines, etc.

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