When you think about blogging, it’s easy to pick a theme and immediately focus on creating content. Unfortunately, because the newest content is typically displayed first, as a blog post gets older, it slowly disappears into the archives—and very few people think about their blog archives.
Here’s the problem: Most of those older blog posts still have value! They are evergreen content that visitors would find helpful, it’s just hard to find them.
Lucky for us, WordPress has default taxonomies—categories and tags—that are used to classify and organize blog posts with relevant terms. Each category and tag creates an archive of all content assigned to it. This is how many websites organize their blog posts.
What is a taxonomy?
“Taxonomy” is just a fancy way of describing whichever system you use to organize and classify information.
While categories and tags work great for most sites, if you’re a content creator, chances are, you can do better. You can create custom taxonomies in WordPress that use terms relevant to what your blog is about. For example, if you have a podcast, instead of using categories and tags to sort episodes, you might want to use taxonomies like guest, topic, industry, or type.
How does it work?
Clear taxonomies sort your content, create high-value archives, and improve site search results, especially when paired with solutions like Search WP or ElasticPress.
Here are a few examples to show you how it works:
Example 1: Recipe Blogs And Food Blogs
Food bloggers are a perfect use case for custom taxonomies, as they write about and share recipes for specific meal types, diet types, and ingredients. With custom taxonomies, instead of generic categories and tags, you can use classifications relevant to food-related content.
Three sample custom taxonomies for food bloggers would be:
- Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, dessert, drinks
- Diets: vegetarian, vegan, pescatarian, dairy-free, gluten-free, soy-free, egg-free, keto, Whole30
- Ingredients: eggs, tomatoes, bell peppers, onions, sausage, cheddar cheese
Example 2: Travel Blogs
Travel sites can also benefit from custom taxonomies by using them to classify content with travel-specific terms. From city, state, county, and country, to types of trips like road trips or resort vacations, there are a plethora of classifications to choose from.
Three sample custom taxonomies for travel bloggers would be:
- Activities: hiking, biking, camping, fishing, rock climbing, dining, beach combing
- Places: restaurant, museum, national park, state park, beach, hotel, amusement park
- Type: road trip, day trip, resort vacation, weekend getaway, week-long vacation
Example 3: Fashion Blogs
Like food blogs and travel blogs, another type of blog that should be using custom taxonomies are fashion blogs. From brands and retail stores, to pieces of clothing and accessories, fashion bloggers are already classifying their content. Custom taxonomies just make it even easier.
Four sample custom taxonomies for fashion bloggers would be:
- Clothing: pants, blouse, tank top, maxi skirt, shorts, skirt, cocktail dress, sundress
- Accessories: necklace, earrings, bracelet, handbag, hat, sunglasses
- Brands: Prada, Old Navy, Forever 21, H&M, Nordstrom, Macy’s, Gucci, Express
- Occasion: business, casual, cocktail, formal, on the town, athleisure, workout
Custom Taxonomies Classify Content With Relevant Terms
As you can see, categories and tags are perfectly fine general form of content classification, but when you leverage custom taxonomies, you can sort and organize your blog content with relevant tags that are specific to the content you are creating, which will in turn, improve your visitors’ on site experience and help them find the content they are looking for quickly.
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