What Is The Difference Between Tags And Categories?

I was always confused with tags and categories. I thought they are the same things. Searching the Internet for an answer and I found out that they are not quite the same. So knowing the difference between them can help you build a better structure for your blog/website; and it can even help you optimize your blog/website for search engine purpose.

What is tag or tagging? – Tag or tagging is a keyword or a short phrase that typically listed alphabetically. People can find your blog/website or other people’s blog/website through tag or tagging. Tag or tagging can be a category but not vice versa. Tag or tagging can be more specific topics of a broad topic. See some general ideas about tag or tagging from Technorati Tags.

What is category? – Category, on the other hand, is something you create to navigate your own website. It will help your visitors to find your related posts easily. Category is searched locally in your own website while tag or tagging can be used to search your own website or other people’s websites. Category is a keyword or a short phrase too except it groups a broad topic.

Tag or Tagging can help optimizing your blog/website for search engines so can category. I also learned that it is a good practice to use both tags and categories for your blog/website. One example of using tags vs. categories is if you write a post that is about fish, then your category should be fish, and your tags should be more specific types of fish.

What is the difference between tags and categories? Please leave a comment below.

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5 responses to “What Is The Difference Between Tags And Categories?

  1. Thanks for the links. I know that understanding this is confusing, and WordPress hasn’t made it easy, especially with their late entry into native tagging, but honestly, most people get it when they think “Categories are Table of Contents. Tags are index words.”

    Also, the last article you’ve listed of mine under “possibly related” isn’t a good reference. I recommend Tags and Tagging in WordPress instead, as that covers more than you will ever want to know about tagging, especially when it comes to tags in WordPress. Your recommendations only cover WordPress, not every blogging platform.

    You are also doing some odd things with this blog, such as your submit Page links. For coverage, you need to put those links on a Page not let them become the Page themselves. Or even in your sidebar.

    I also recommend a series I did on the Blog Herald which began with Blog Post Category Trauma: How To Help Bloggers With Useless Categories, a good introduction into how to create categories that are useful and helpful, and heal from using poorly named categories as well as tags as categories.

    Good luck with your blogging. You’re doing some interesting stuff here.

  2. Again thanks for your comment! Many times when I search for WordPress.com tips, your site just showed up on the first page of Google searching. I am inspired by your site. So much to learn as a new blogger. Thanks a lot for your kind advice. Try to catch up every day.

  3. And my apologies about the “possibly related” thing. I didn’t know this was a new feature of WordPress.com and it really leaves many wanting – and unhappy, as I was with an inappropriate link to an unhelpful post of my own – which would hurt your readers. I see that you have turned off the feature. Good for you. Hopefully, enough people will complain so they will change it to only link to blogs of our choosing, starting with our own trusted content. 😀

    Good luck and thank you for the kind words.

  4. Oh, and good luck changing your post categories to something more useful to your readers than your blog post titles.

  5. Thank you for visiting my site. In the future you’ll see me stumbling a lot on your websites. Thank you for providing such informative sites for your readers!

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