Friday, January 18, 2013

Tips for Tagging Effectively

This blog is the first place that I have used tags to label posts and show my list of tags to the reader. I've had fun playing around with them. Here some things that I do to tag and organize my posts:
  1. Don't tag every possible word.  I used to tag every word I could think of for each post, but my list of topics was extremely long and it was hard to tell what the blog was really about. Now I limit tags to words that are either relevant to the blog, likely to be searched, or topics that I plan to write more about.
  2. That said, it helps to tag multiple words based on what people might search for, especially if a topic is popular. This is why I label "clothes," "style," and "shopping" separately even though they refer to the the same few posts. Some of my posts labeled "college" are also tagged under "school" to help students who are not in college to find school posts that are relevant to them. 
  3. Tagging is a great way to connect the common themes in your posts and give your blog a more coherent feel (if that's what you're going for). Look for topics that repeat often. A lot of posts had the theme of personal differences. These posts were often labeled under "peer pressure," "societal pressure," or "being yourself," but there was no one topic that linked all of these personal differences posts together. That's when I came up with "differences" as a tag.
  4. Be liberal with the tags you have created. Each time you create a new tag, look for other posts that could use the same label. While tagging every related word can lead to a lot of one-time tags, having lots of posts with the same tags will help establish what your blog is about, if you show your tag list to the reader. Every so often, I review all my posts and see where I can add tags. 
  5. Be relevant with tags. While it's good to use tags as often as you can, it can be annoying to the reader if some of the posts don't really fit the tag. Every so often, I check my tagged posts and make sure they relate clearly and directly to the topic.
These tips work well for the type of blog I have, but may not work for every type of blog. If you have a tagging method that works better for you, go for it.

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