Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Techie Tuesday: WordPress Categories

Today’s question is from Hillary of Style in a Small Town: I use WordPress and am starting to develop several different categories of blog posts. I'd like to have a "Styled" page just for my outfit posts and a "Beauty" page, for my beauty posts, etc. How do I do this? I've seen where other bloggers have those pages to click on and at the top of the page is says something about "these posts are labeled x". Can you help me with this?! 

In order to have pages dedicated just to certain types of post, you need to make sure you are categorizing them accordingly. In WordPress, you can assign keywords to posts using both Categories and Tags. I recommend that bloggers use categories for series and larger ideas, and use tag for post specific content. You should have no more than 30 categories. For my White Oak Creative website, I have four categories - Client Work, Font Friday, Tutorials, and Company Updates. Just because I say you should have no more than 30 categories means that you should have a ton. Categories should be focused on the content you regularly post.

Here’s two examples:

  • Fashion Blogger - Jennie Wold - features outfits and styling tips. 
    • Categories (6): Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter, Styling Tips, and Personal* 
    • Tags (unlimited): Brands and trends she featured in those specific posts, i.e. “midi-skirt, Asos, etc). 
  •  Food Blogger - Cookin Cowgirl - features recipes and diy food projects 
    • Categories: Separated by meal component as well as holidays (over 30) i.e. See Recipe Box and Other 
    • Tags (unlimited): related to the ingredients incorporated i.e. corn, flour, brown sugar, etc.    
Often when I do a redesign, clients go through their content and clean it up. This isn’t ideal. If you are producing deliberate, purposeful content, you should have a clear idea of your entire site’s organization. Whether or not getting a redesign, I suggest going through your posts and cleaning up your tags and categories. If your categories are in pretty bleak shape (assess this by going to ALL POSTS < CATEGORIES in your site’s DASHBOARD), create an outline of your post content.

When creating categories, you want to make sure you have at least 5 posts per category. The only exception is new bloggers or new series that you are starting. I’ve had clients create a category outline to realize that only 1 or 2 posts would fall into those categories. Then, it’s truly not a category. Also remember, you can always add categories.

After you've created your category outline, you can delete any categories you are not going to use. To do this go into your site’s CATEGORY PAGE. Delete categories you are not going to use (this will just delete the label from the post). If you are adding any categories. Add them here.

Once you’ve got all your categories listed, view ALL POSTS in your DASHBOARD. Hover over the post you would like to edit and select “QUICK EDIT”. Check the CATEGORIES you would like to assign to the post and add in the tags you would like to add (separate with a comma). Check UPDATE and repeat for all posts.

After all your posts have been properly categorized go to APPEARANCE < MENUS. In the left toggle of the page you will see an area with “Pages, Links, Categories” toggle. Select CATEGORIES. Select the categories you would like to add to the MENU. Then drag and drop them to where you would like to see them in the menu. When finished, press “SAVE MENU” to save changes.

Do you have tech or design questions you would like answered? "Techie Tuesdays" is a weekly series written by Lindsay HumesofWhite Oak Creative. In order to make this series as beneficial to Midwest Bloggers, you can email your specific questions to Lindsay at hello@whiteoakcreative.com, and she will answer them in her weekly series.


  1. Thanks for the post Lindsay! I'm having trouble getting it to work though.

  2. Where are you running into the issue? At the categories or with the menus?

    Make sure you are adding the categories to the correct menu. Some themes come with multiple different menus. When you are under APPEARANCES < MENU you can see see the different types of menus you have and the location. If you are still having an issue, send me an email. I will likely need to look at your dashboard of your site.