Friday, August 18, 2006

The Art of Tagging

I was asked by someone to explain when to tag a post for Technorati. In answering that question, I decided to look at tagging in general, both in Technorati and del.icio.us. Starting with how to tag.

You don't have to be registered with Technorati to use Technorati tags, but registering with them is a way to manage how they list your blog, increases your visibility in their system and allows you to tag your blog with labels that describe your blog (more on this in a moment), plus it's always fun to chart the progress of your ranking. Blogging Chicks members should be between an 8,000-9,000 ranking, which sounds bad but is actually very good when you realize that you start in the millions. You can register here.

After you have registered, click on the configure button. In the configure page, you'll find a place to tag your blog and to give your blog a description. Those with Christian blogs should tag it as "Christian" and maybe with your denomination. If you have a mommy blog, make sure you tag it as "motherhood," "parenting," "mom," "mommy," etc. (Use as many variations as possible.) If you think you're funny, then add a "humor" tag as well. The reason you tag your whole blog is that people will search for blogs with a particular tag and if you use every variation, you increase the chances of getting a hit. I've tagged this blog and Reformed Chicks as PCA blogs and when people search for blogs tagged with a PCA tag, my blogs are listed. For Political blogs make sure you tag by party affiliation and whether you are conservative or liberal.

The code that you need to put in your template is on the configure page, as well. Make sure you put it after the "Powered by Blogger" code if you are on Blogger.

Now, how do you tag a post? If you're tagging for categories already you don't have to use Technorati tags but make sure you include a rel="tag" attribute (I have an example later in this post). If you aren't tagging your posts already, just go to Technorati, and in the search line of Technorati, enter the word you want to use as your tag and then select "in tags" as your search method. Under the search bar, on the right hand side is a link that says, "Add this tag to your posts," click on that link and copy the html for your post and put it at the bottom of your post. Here's a visual aid:When people search on the for these words, they will get a listing that will include your blog, so, tag your blog appropriately. How do you know what's appropriate? That's a hard question to answer. Parenting tips should be tagged with a "parenting" tag, a "child" tag, a "tip" tag and maybe some specific feature of the post, such as if you had a parenting tip on how to get your child to read, then you might also want to add a "reading" tag and a "books" tag. A good place to get ideas on how to tag and what to tag if you are a mommy blog is to go to a mommy blog that tags, 5 minutes for Mom is a good place to start, they seem to tag every post.

Another place to get help is from the Technorati related tags. If you search in tags for "mom," these are the related tags, according to Technorati:

Tag things of interest to others, funny stories can be tagged with a "humor" tag, book reviews and recommendations can be tagged with a "book" tag, movie reviews and recommendations with a "movie" tag, recipes, political articles can be tagged with tags that match the point of the story: "abortion," "pro-choice," "pro-life," "judges," the name of the politician, party affiliation, etc. You can tag your memes, I've actually gotten a hit on Works for Me Wednesday.

When you tag, make sure you tag all aspects of the article. When I tag a Bible study, I make sure I've tagged it for the book of the Bible, "Christianity," "Calvinism," "Bible" and "Bible study." This will increase the odds of getting a hit.

If you are interested in generating some traffic, you could find out what tags people are interested in and write a post about that subject. Technorati lists the most popular tags at any given time of the day on their main website page.

Now, tagging for del.icio.us is different. del.cio.us is a way to have categories in Blogger until Blogger Beta is ready. It is really easy to tag an article using del.icio.us if you have Firefox (if you don't have Firefox, go here to download it), you just have to install the extension (get it here). Unlike Technorati, you do have to have a del.cio.us account, you can register for one here. After you have published the article, click on it and then click on the del.icio.us tag in the Firefox extension.

In the window that pops up, tag the article with whatever words you want. This will create tags in you del.icio.us account.

You can also tag your article with a tag that points to your del.icio.us tags, unlike Technorati, you control what is seen by the reader who clicks on your tags. For an example, go to my resources tag in del.icio.us and see what I have listed there. If I wanted to, I could also list other articles I have found on the Internet that share the same theme and I may eventually do so. If you do tag your article, make sure you include the rel="tag" attribute, so that Technorati will see it and you won't have to tag for Technorati as well. Here is an example of what it would look like for my resources tag:


<a href="http://del.icio.us/michelefromrcb/resources" rel="tag">resources</a>

After you have tagged all your articles, you might want to install a del.icio.us cloud as I have done in my side bar. You can get the code here.

For a more in-depth article on Technorati tagging and how to generate tags using on-line helps, go here.

Updated to add: Here is also another way to automate the process (make sure you click on his prevous post because he gives a very detailed explanation).

tags: , , , ,

15 Comments:

  1. The Scribe said...
    All that tagging stuff is over my head. I am not a techie. I am more concerned with the end of the world. Are these the last days?

    This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.
    2 Tim 3:1-5

    http://theprinceofpeace.blogspot.com/2006/06/end-times-great-deception-and-falling.html
    michele said...
    So, do you think this post is a sign of the end times?
    Kevin Stilley said...
    Thanks for the great info. It is very helpful.
    Julie Carobini said...
    Very helpful! I made a bunch of changes/additions tonight. Thanks Michele!
    I think mommy ate it! said...
    Thank you. This helped understand tags. I working on making some changes.
    Pamela said...
    I'm going to get the hubby to help me look this over.
    I'm going to download FireFox... and then look at this tagging stuff.

    Plus, I had a little thing on my blogger that asked if I wanted to switch now... and then the other check box was offered the option to not do it yet.

    So, being as I'm not the tech person, I'm having high anxiety. Need meds +:=



    ps. speaking of high anxiety.... the post from the Scribe. Signs are everywhere.... but we need to go on living (right?)
    Polly said...
    I've not had much success with technorati. I use blog.com which has categories and so technorati gets updates automatically, but they stopped updating my blog like 67 days ago. No one will respond to my problem though I have e-mailed a billion times. Discouraged.
    Pamela said...
    I downloaded firefox... then I hooked up with technorati

    then my blog disappeared entirely

    I added the 51st state of hysteria to the flag

    ... and now it's back.

    I've got no business bloggin!
    Robin said...
    Michele, Thanks for this post. I was curious what Firefox is, exactly...does it replace Internet Explorer if you download it? Since Blogger is close to switching over to Beta, and Beta promises to have tags (and since I'm not already tagging), would you just wait if you had not already tagged w/Tech. or De.cio.ous (lol, don't remember where the dots were).

    I guess I'm a bit reluctant after Pamela's post.

    And totally confused by the scribe.
    Mysterious Lady said...
    Alright I signed up to delicious, I still can't figure out how to make a freakin cloud. What's wrong with me. boo hoo!

    I tried tagging my posts on my blog, they end up in one long line.

    Am I technically impaired or what?
    Nan said...
    Scribe is funny.

    Michele, what am I doing wrong. I did the tag search thing just as you said, clicked on the "add this tag..." but it never popped up with an html. Help!
    Thanks!
    Nan
    Janice (5 Minutes for Mom) said...
    SOOOOOO FUNNY!

    I just hopped on over for a read, (I am so behind on my blog visiting lately!) and was reading your recent posts. Then I saw this great post and I hopped over to Word and started writing a post to link to it. But - now here is the funny part - I hadn't even finished reading it - so I didn't even know that you linked back to us in it!! Then after writing my post I came back to read the rest of it and there we were!

    Maybe I will mention this little coincidence in the post or else people are going to think I am just linking cause you linked to me - NOT becuaseit is a wonderful, helpful post that I just stumbled on!

    BTW - I will be posting it later this weekend. :)
    michele said...
    Thanks Janice! I thought you guys would be perfect for examples because you cover the gamut for mommy issues.
    KristieD said...
    I think i finally get it. I read this when you first put it up, but it did not compute in my head. But i just added my first tags to my most recent post. I did it in both technorati and del.icio.us

    Yae me. At least i think yae me. As long as i did it right!
    michele said...
    Yeah you! I'm glad that you kept trying to understand and I'm glad to help.

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