Tagging and Tag Clouds
Tagging became popular with the growth of Web 2.0 sites over the last few years. You may see on some sites such as Technorati, Del.icio.us or Flickr having these tags implemented throughout their systems.
Tagging allows users within these networks to categories information with specific keywords. It makes it easier to find images, music or any type of information or media that is tagged with particular keywords.
How your site can benefit from tagging
Any site with a large amount of content can benefit from tagging. Having all of your content tagged with key terms allows users to easily find related information grouped by those tags. It's like a suggested search for all of your content on your site.
Having more content presented to your users will most likely increase their stay time on your site. It can also increase the return rate of visitors as well.
In terms of search engine optimisation, having all of your content organised by tags helps a great deal with optimisation. Now all of your content doesn't just have keywords in the meta of the site but also a useful amount of keywords used as tags throughout your content. This is fantastic food for the search engines not to mention all of the pages of content that is dynamically created not only for the search engines but also for your users.
Some believe that these dynamically created pages can cause duplication of content which search engines look unkindly upon. It maybe a good idea to have a noindex tag on these dynamically created pages so that duplicated content isn't spread across the site.
How to get tags on my site
To get tags and tag clouds on your site you will need a database driven site. Publishing systems like WordPress, Movabletype and Joomla are just a few that support tagging either as a default or with third party plugins to the system. This site in particular uses Joomla and some third party tagging components in order to tag the content individually and then create a tag cloud dynamically from the tagged content.
Tagging in Word Press
I'm not a huge user of WordPress as I use Joomla for the majority of my cms work. So here is just a quick link to how to use Tag Clouds in WordPress. If you have a better guide for WordPress please email me or submit one in the comments.
Tagging in Joomla
Now, Joomla on the other hand I can provide some advice on. My favourite tagging component for Joomla is Jootags. This is an all in one tagging component that allows you to tag all of your content, display tags in your articles for readers and also displays a well formatted tag cloud as a modules. I haven't found another one that compares to this component.
Another tag cloud modules that I sometimes use is a automatically generating one called Tag Clouds for Joomla (Very creative name). This modules uses the site search to display related content using keywords that it automatically crawls from the site. I don't think this is the best mothod as it continually changes and isn't a effective reflection of actual tag content. The good thing about this module is that it can be modified to display Google Search results and therefore more Google ads and potential revenue.
Any ideas or feedback on tagging for WordPress or Joomla would be much appreciated.