Using Tags and Categories for Better Navigation on Your Site

Internet users are busy. They want the information they are looking for quickly. If they don’t find it easily, they will not hesitate to close your website and go to another website. Thus user experience of the blog with respect to navigation is very important.

When it comes to navigation, website/blog owners generally focus a lot on site architecture, related links, intext links, etc. (of course, these are all good practices) but forget/ignore basics like usage of tags and categories.

This article helps you know the purpose and need of tags and categories.

tags and categoriesCategories and tags are important elements of a website. They help in keeping the content in an organized manner and deepen the engagement with the visitors. They allow the visitor to spend more time on the website as they make it easy for the visitors to find the information they are looking for.

Categories can be defined as broader topics listed on your site and are used for grouping related posts, so that it becomes easy for the reader to locate the post in your blog. When visitors click on any of the listed category names, they will get a list of posts related to a specific subject or topic.

Tags (also called as labels) are similar to categories, but are more specific and are used to describe a post in a more detailed manner. They are like keywords/search terms which readers use for a specific topic while searching on your site. When readers click on any of the listed tag names, they will get a list of posts closely matching to their search terms. But be careful when tagging a post to a specific tag as incorrect tagging of posts prevents user find relevant content on your site. Here tagging is defined as ‘attaching’ or ‘labeling’ a post.

You can also attach a blog post/article with a multiple tags but it will confuse readers as to which tag this post closely relates to. Overusing tags for a single blog post undermines the effectiveness of the blog post. So, be careful in adding tags to your blog posts.

Examples of categories and tags
For example, if your blog has content related to major/current updates in some country – then updates can be on any broader topic like business, crime, politics, sports, technology, entertainment etc. Now, these broad topics are categories of a blog. Suppose you need any information or update on sports, you can click on the sports category, and if you need updates only on particular sport like ‘baseball’, then click on the ‘tag’ labeled as ‘baseball’ (if baseball tag exists and contains all posts related only to baseball). You will get all the information related to baseball. It makes it easy for the reader to find information by tagging specific keywords/topics.

With the use of tags and categories in your site/blog, readers can easily find content of their interest. So, don’t get confused between tags and categories, tags are not categories, don’t use tag names that are same as the category name in your site/blog; they are different and don’t serve the same purpose. So, don’t confuse your readers.