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Tagging, The In Thing Or Passť

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#1 bwelford


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Posted 23 May 2008 - 11:09 AM

Off Topic offtopic Wow, my Dragon Naturally Speaking software actually put the accent in passť as I dictated this.

That other thread, Been Reading That Seo Is Slowly Dying / Changing, has got me thinking about the current status of SEO and what works and what does not work. I'm currently enthusiastic about tagging. Again it's a thing that shouldn't be spammed. However to have an author's significant tags (not more than say 5) on what she or he has just written seems to me valuable content. We also have significant indexing possibilities with websites like Technorati and del.icio.us.

I've written a little here and there and also found a neat way to create a tag cloud webpage, which I mentioned on Sphinn. I was somewhat surprised to see the following comment there.

2006 is over, why the continued obsession over tags?

I recently tested a series of tag plugins for Wordpress and got zero SEO lift. Google seems to be discounting these.

Try submitting this on a web design forum because it has little or no SEO value.

With that encouragement, perhaps it's better to discuss this here. :)

What do others think about tagging? Is this valuable information to the search engines? .. or will it like keywords become devalued with overuse?

#2 JoeD


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Posted 23 May 2008 - 12:56 PM

The first question on tags should be how useful is it to users. Because if it isn't, eventually the algos will dampen their SEO effectiveness.

I think tags are fantastic on flickr. It solves an enormous problem, ie meta data on pictures. They do get spamed sometimes w/ irrelevant content tagged, but not too often surprisingly.

On forums, I like the idea, but honestly, they aren't that useful. How often do you use tag search on forums that have that feature? The regular search usually does the trick so well, and tags seem to throw up lots of irrelevant results.

Tag clouds on blogs? Cute idea. But I never use them to find blog content. The category list is far better.

The only place I use them is flickr.

There might be other places where tags are useful. Delicious perhaps.

One thing I have learned over the years though is that there is a niche of people that use different methods to achieve the same thing. So I'm curious if anyone has used tags as a user at a place other than flickr?

#3 A.N.Onym


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Posted 26 May 2008 - 12:17 AM

I think tags are only valuable, if they help to filter the category posts with nuances. For example, you have a category on marketing. Now, I want a tag to see "affiliate" marketing posts or even "email" marketing.

Tags that mimic categories are of little use for me, really and I prefer to use categories (both as site owner and a reader).

If a category doesn't show the number of posts in it, tags that differ in font size to show which one is popular is a nice tint, though.

Edited by A.N.Onym, 26 May 2008 - 12:18 AM.

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