I suck at tags. Actually, that’s not true. I’m just time-driven: i.e. it drives me crazy. <LOL> The truth is, I don’t spend nearly as much time as I should on tags because I’m forever rushed. That got me to thinking [oh-oh]. Why not post about these vital words? And, while providing info, perhaps I’d attempt (kick to butt) using them more diligently. <LMAO big time>
A post tag, not to be confused with a tagline, is a keyword. Generally, it’s a description of what the post is about and can be a single word or several words long. You can use as many as you like, but some say use no more than six and others suggest fifteen is more than ample.
Is a tag an actual keyword? Kind of. They serve a similar purpose, but are utilized differently. Tags are used to locate items on your blog while keywords are used to locate items via search engines.
Do you need to use tags? No, but they have their merit. Tags are great for organizing posts, such as arranging/categorizing them based on similarity. Tags may also increase the chances of people actually seeing your posts. You can certainly use whatever tags you like, but the more explicit you are, the better—with one caveat. Be specific, but also be broad enough that you can use that same tag for several [relevant] posts.
Keywords are used by search engines to identify what your blog and blog posts are about (look for an upcoming post on these), which are different from tags, but you may want to use them for tags. Why? Because keywords are common words/phrases people search for. The purpose (and benefit) re using keywords: to increase your blog’s SEO or Search Engine Optimization.
Back to tags. Some refer to these identifiers as your blog index and an index, as we know, is a list of particular topics. They help viewers/followers navigate your blog (i.e. browse content). Consider them internal links and triggers; each tag will generate a new archive page on your site.
In my Internet travels, I happened upon Blogflux, which is “a central destination for the blogosphere, providing you with everything to get your blog up and running”. What it also provides: an extensive section entitled “Most Popular Blog Tags”. (I never endorse—not yet anyway—but they’ve piqued my curiosity and I’ll have to check out the site more comprehensively.) If you’re looking for tags, have a look-see.
On that note, my friends, happy trails—er—tagging.