How To Build And Write a Blog for Good SEO Practices (Tags and Categories)

Blog Writing, Tag, Category Best Practices and SEO Premises. 

Please keep in mind that I'm am by no means, the end all of information on this issue.  All I've done here is compile a few notes I've shared with friends and then, thought to myself, "Hey!  I should compile these into a post!  That, and I thought I'd quit pestering my buddy.

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If you're starting a blog and are wondering about some simple things you can do to help gain a little bit of traction on the internet, I think I have some decent, basic insights to that. Especially after battling the web for the last few years with various blogs and seeing what works and doesn't work for my site.

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As far as your blog's SEO (Search Engine Optimization), there are some simple things that can be done to help your blog start to get more traction on the web.  Or at least, simple starter things that won't set you back.

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Using Categories and Tags Properly

According to WordPress.com support, the maximum number of relevant tags or categories, total, per post should not exceed 15.

Categories and tags are ways to put your articles into bins of content.  It's a way to label and mark them for reference, and could be viewed as a keyword sort of reference.

(In WordPress.com blogs, these are "FILED UNDER" or, as the world of blogging might call it, categories.  And TAGS.  Or, as the world of blogging might call it, um, tags.

One thing you want to do is try to minimize the # of cats and tags and be as smart as possible about picking them. 

It's like categories (or cats) are the titles of a book, and tags could be viewed as the chapters of the book. Another way to look at it is categories could be considered a table of contents and tags are references to the subject of the post.

In other words, categories collects groups of posts under that heading.

It's been suggested that the fewer, the better, of both.

Over on Brusimm.com, I've kept my categories to a bare minimum.  The reason being that you want the references to each article to be smart and efficient so folks can end up navigating faster between articles.

At this time, I might have more than 5,000 posts, but I only have a few categories.  And if need be, a sub category or two.  Of course, with that many posts, categories can get pretty numerous.

For example, when I write about a movie, I choose the category of entertainment and its sub-category of movies. 

Second, you SHOULD NOT have tags with the same name as the categories.  You've already labelled your article movies to a degree with the category, you don't need a tag for movies.  If you have to have a tag, then don't use the cat of movies.

So in my imaginary post, I am now thinking about choosing a tag.

If my article were about a movie called Gasbutt, where stupid people fart, and everyone evacuates buildings and runs down the street away from the farting people, and if they didn't run away, they'd suffocate and mutate into green clouds of gas, then my tag(s) might just be Gasbutt.

But my other tags WOULD NOT BE

fart, farting, evacuate, buildings, running, people, butt, mutate, suffocate, green, gas and one of my personal favorites that shows off one's real expertise or inexperience at the hobby, "blog!"

So that's Category: Entertainment/Movies
Tagged gasbutt.

Also I learned from personal observation that Google just might frown on too many tags and duplicate cat/tag naming.  (I can't prove it, but I've seen some things I've done and seemingly paid a price for that deed, that make me believe that.)

It's tough to back up and choose the minimalist approach to articles.

Keep in mind, if your blog name has movie or TV or something subject related, more than likely you won't need that cat or tag.  If your blog is Bruce's Car Racing, you seriously don't need a cat or tag with car, racing or car racing.  Your site title will more than likely cover that aspect that Google, Bing and Yahoo are looking for.

And Google and those guys has learned to read content, so they know what they're seeing when the web bot comes by.

Blog Titles

When naming your article, give the title a good name.

When you try being catchy, with a title like, "Oh No, Look What Broke!," think of this way:  Who on the web is using Google or Bing to search for Oh, No, Look, What or Broke?

No, they'll be looking for broken MP3 player.  SO it's important in how you phrase your titles.   I like to label my fix articles, "How To Fix My (item name here)"

The simpler approach to titles:  If I wanted to find this, what would I ask? Think about it.  If you go on the web looking for something, how would you phrase your search to look for it? (And keep titles to or under 70 characters.  SEO guidelines note that Google only sees those first 70 or so characters.)

Yep, that's what I'm talking about.  Much like the title of this very post.

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Hi - sorry for the confirmation but I need to weed out the noise from the well intended comments. Thanks for leaving a note... - Bruce