In migrating from Wordpress to Jekyll, I’ve been updating and changing many aspects of my personal site and blog. One area that is overdue for some attention, regards the structure of my posts, specifically, how best to make best us of ‘categories’ and ‘tags’.
My existing categories and tags were inherited from the old Wordpress blog, and were formed over the last 5 years in a rather organic manner. (i.e. with little planning, on an ad-hoc basis).
Let’s consider their main purposes:
- to help people find interesting and relevant information in my blog
- to provide some contextual relevance for search engine crawlers
- to guide readers to additional relevant content
Categories should give a general outline about the topic(s) for a post. For a relatively small personal blog such as this, I would imagine that maybe 4-12 categories should be sufficient. If I struggle to keep my number of categories low, then I probably need to step back, and consider which handful of broad topics are most relevant, or perhaps most interesting to be associated with. There should be at least 1 category per post, and there can be a hierarchy to these topics.
Tags should be more like the keywords which are most relevant for a post. Depending on the nature of a post, there could zero or 10+ tags for a single post. The tags can be independent of the category, and indeed a single tag might be used in multiple categories, and potentially serve as a mechanism to link together potentially disparate posts.
I read somewhere that:
Categories are like a table of contents for your blog, and the tags are like the index.
So, what categories should I use for this blog? My initial thoughts:
- WebDev - WebPerf
- Dynamic Media - Responsive Images
- Education - Coding for kids
- Workflows - How-to’s - Tooling
- Perspectives - Inspirational
- Life - Habits - Health
I’m pretty sure there will need to be ongoing revisions. Also, as I undertake the task of re-categorising my older posts, I hope that some structure will become more apparent!