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Understanding Wordpress Categories and Tags

This will be the most time consuming task you have done yet. This is a very important step so don’t skip over it. I know you are chomping at the bit to write your first article but patience will pay off in the end.

We need to decide what categories we are going to have and what child categories we will be using. Child categories are sub directories of categories. Think of a category as a directory. Inside of that main directory (category) you have sub categories or sub directories, these subs are called child categories. Then we have something called tags. Tags are sub categories of main categories. For example if we are selling computers for a living we could make a category called Software and a child category called Vista. Then inside the Vista child category we could have a tag called Articles. We could make another category called Hardware and a child category called Motherboards. Then we could create a tag called Athlon and another tag called Intel. In our Software category we could have Vista, Xp, Windows 7, Office, etc as tags. In our Hardware category we could have Motherboards, Video Cards, Hard Drives, Towers, Ram etc as child categories. Hopefully you get the idea now.

Go ahead and create some categories and then create tags for the categories. You can do this in the section titled Posts. Make sure you really put some thought into your categories, it would be a real mess if you decided to change them later.

Once you have completed making categories and tags we should enable the use of Permalinks before doing anything else.

To enable the use of Permalinks do the following:

  • Click on Settings and then click Permalinks.
  • Place a checkmark in the radio button beside Custom Structure and then enter the following information:
  • /%category%/%postname%/.php
  • This is done for SEO reasons
  • When you are finished adding the information above click on Save.
  • If your .htaccess file is writable and mod_rewrite is installed on your server then everything should be fine. If your .htaccess file isn’t writable we will have to make it writable. Do the following to make your .htaccess file writable.
  • Launch Filezilla and connect to your website. Once Filezilla has connected double click the Public HTML folder.
  • Now that we are in the right folder find the .htaccess file and right click the file and select File Permissions. Place a checkmark in all three write boxes. The numeric value should now say 666 (scary) and then click Ok.
  • Log back into your dashboard and try enabling permalinks again. If permalinks are still not working you probably don’t have mod_rewrite installed on your server. You will have to contact your hosting provider and get them to install mod_rewrite, if they refuse to do so, find another hosting provider.

Go ahead and explore the rest of the options under the Settings section and enable or disable anything you wish. In the Reading section under Settings I would only have at most 2 posts showing at all times. I find 10 is a bit too much especially if you are the type to create large posts. All these settings are to be used as you wish, go ahead and experiment and see what works for you.

Let’s move on to the Plugins section.