Blog tutorial: Using ‘tags’ to organize your posts and help your readers find info

Using tag words on your blog posts is a quick and easy way to “group” your posts and create links to those groups of posts.

“How?” you ask? I’ll use my own “Everything Else” blog as an example (that’s right … the one you’re looking at right now). Now, I love photography, and one of the things I do on my blog (besides create blog tutorials) is post photos that I’ve taken. Usually, when I post a photo/photos, I also like to include a link that says something like, “If you enjoyed these photos, feel free to check out more of my images here.” And if you click on the blue “check out more of my images here” part of that statement, it will take you to this URL: http://shane.areavoices.com/tag/shanepics/, which is a list or “stream” of photo posts that I’ve created.

Pretty cool, I think. And it’s super easy to do. Each time I write a post about my photography, I add the term “shanepics” to that post in the “tags” box. To do this, just enter the tag word you want to use and click the “Add” button. You can attach as may tag words as you want to a blog post. (see the image below)

Since my photo posts are all tagged with the “shanepics” tag, they’re all neatly organized into a “feed’ or “stream” or list at http://shane.areavoices.com/tag/shanepics. You can see that all my posts that are tagged “shanepics” are at this URL. All you need to do to make this link work for your own page is to replace “shane” with the name of your blog and replace “shanepics” with your own tag words.

Pretty cool, huh? That’s also the technique I used to create the “Shane’s pictures” link at the top of my blog (see the image below). If you want to know how to get a link like that in the menu at the top of your own blog, here’s a tutorial on “menus.”

And that’s not all you can do with the tag stream function. You can also create tag streams that use more than one tag word. For example, Let’s say I wanted a stream of all the blog posts I’ve created related to my photography or the music beat that I used to cover. The following address will link to posts that are tagged either shanepics” or “music”: http://shane.areavoices.com/tag/shanepics,music/ (Note the comma in between the tag words).

Or, suppose I want create a link that contains only blog posts that contain both black-and-white photos and landscape photos. I have a “bw” tag for my posts that contain the former and a “landscape” tag for my posts that contain the latter. I can include both of those words in the web address and insert a “+” sign between them (instead of a comma), and it will give me a “tag stream” that contains only posts that are tagged with both of those terms: http://shane.areavoices.com/tag/landscape+bw/.

Let me know if you have questions. And, if you’re interested in seeing more blog how-to’s, here they are (and, yes, I created that with a tag stream too :-) ).

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