Cleaning up this blog has been something I’ve always wanted to do… but never got down to doing it. Today, I finally killed my procrastination and got the ball rolling. And man. Its amazing how much JUNK I’ve found in my blog after these years of learning from the experts.
Tags on this Blog
Tags on this blog started in the pre-WordPress-tag era, back in the days when the Ultimate Tag Warrior plugin was the king of plugins – creating tags that linked directly to Technorati, so people doing tag-surfing would pop by your blog and check out what you’re publishing.
(Actually I wasn’t sure whether people actually surf based on tags… but uhm… tagging seems to be HOT those days)
Then, in WordPress 2.3, Matt and his team decided that WordPress should have tags built in! There was a mass migration from UTW’s tags into WordPress tags. At that time, the All in One SEO Pack plugin was either not yet invented, or more possibly, I was still aloof of the fact that the wonderful plugin exists. I was still using my tweaked template to add different meta descriptions and keywords to my posts.
So. Back then, each of my tags led to a page on its own, and since most of my tags were terribly messed up, most tags were used only once… which meant HORRIBLE internal content duplication within my blog! Yikes! (and worst still, erm… I didn’t realise this at that time!)
Luckily, AIO SEO appeared, and with the option to “no index” tag pages, I did so immediately. In fact, I “no index”-ed everything except my main page, pages, single posts, and category pages. Afterall, these pages contained all the information there is on this blog. Any more would risk content duplication if not managed well.
But the tagging continued as part of habit – whenever I blogged, I added tags. And more tags, and MORE tags.
So much so, when I looked at my tag cloud today, what I found was a tag thunderstorm.
My tags were not used consistently, I had misspellings of the “WordPress”, some tags were hyphenated, some had underscores, and then some had spaces… it was just a huge mess, and I found most of my tags were used only once… which meant that even if you clicked on the tags expecting to find more posts on the same tag, you will probably be disappointed.
So with the consideration that my tags do help me in my search listings today (they were kicked out of the index after I implemented AIO SEO!), I’ve decided to remove tags from all my posts. Yep, tags no more. Never really liked them, wasn’t good with them, and now no more use for them.
I’m not saying tags have no use. When implemented well, tags can essentially replace search. If you able to predict what your visitors search for, then you can create a tag for that, and lump in the posts that are related… and that takes a TON of discipline (which I obviously do not have).
So I’ll stick to my categories. And yes there is a difference between categories and tags.
Are you using your tags correctly? Or should you be cleaning up your blog too?