A WordPress Tag is one of the default WordPress taxonomies. Users can add a tag to their posts with categories. However, while a category may cover a broad topic range, a WordPress Tag is topic-specific and smaller in scope. Tags are like keywords applied to topics covered in a specific post.
Tags are a popular and frequently used default WordPress taxonomy that provides an easy way for site administrators and content publishers to organize and sort content into topics. It also helps visitors find topics of interest. When they click on a tag, they are taken to an archive page listing all posts with that tag. Using a widget can also let you display tags on a sidebar.
WordPress Tags vs. Categories
Tags and categories work slightly differently. Tags help identify all posts tagged with a specific word, while categories include more general sections of a site. In other words, tags are like a book’s back index that assigns words describing the exact details of a post. On the other hand, categories are like the table of contents – they separate site content into general topics.
Another difference is that in WordPress if you don’t choose a category for a post, it is filed under ‘uncategorized’ by default. If you decide not to attach tags, WordPress doesn’t add them. Hence, tags are optional and limitless in the number you can add.
WordPress Tags SEO Best Practices
While WordPress tags may be beneficial from a usability viewpoint, some SEO best practices ensure your tag use doesn’t negatively affect your site’s SEO. By default, each tag used creates a separate archive page listing all posts using that tag.
This usage is excellent for humans but creates low-quality duplicate content pages for search engine bots. In other words, your main blog archive page and each post’s URL list your posts. Instead of wasting Google’s time by tagging archive pages, use the “noindex” meta tag to request that Google and other internet bots avoid indexing your tag archives or web page.