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WordPress Tags vs Categories

Tags and categories are very important for every modern blog section. They not only contribute to better-distributed content but also improve UX and add a kick to your website’s SEO.

If you are still learning the WordPress basics and want to create a WordPress site that stands out, then it is necessary to focus your attention on the taxonomies. They are essential for you, your content, your site visitors, and search engines and the more you know about tags and categories, the more successful your website will become.

You can also check out how to use title tags in WordPress.

WordPress Tags vs Categories

Although tags and categories are most commonly used in conjunction, both are different from each other regarding their character and sorting approach. Here are the main differences:


  • Tags describe a specific part of your blog content, whereas WordPress categories are used for general distribution. For example, in a travel and food blog, fruity and vegan tags can be included in the recipes for a particular salad, whereas, the category “Food” can contain all the articles regarding the matter. In this particular example, a second large category can be Traveling, which contains everything regarding the traveling topic.


  • Tags are independent, whereas categories are hierarchical. This means that tags simply co-exist with each other and none is “main” or “subsidiary”. On the other hand, you can add main and sub-WordPress categories. This means that one category can be contained in a larger one and the second in an even larger one. For example, in the main category Travel, you can add a subcategory such as European destinations, and within this one, a subcategory as Austrian Destinations and within it Spots in Vienna. Right here you can place your review article of a certain cool pub in the heart of the Austrian capital. To make the article more descriptive, you can add tags as follows: liquor, bar, fine whiskey, stage.


  • Tags are optional, and categories are mandatory. You can decide whether you want to include or exclude tags, but your posts are always sorted in a category. By default, WordPress stores your posts in the category Uncategorized. You can have as many categories as you wish, but you cannot delete them all – Uncategorized will always be present and if your content cannot be stored in any other category, it will automatically be stored here.



If you wish to up your site-building game and learn how to better use WordPress for this process, then have a look at our full and comprehensive guide, which will lead you through every step of the process.

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