The importance of WordPress categories is phenomenal and it’s only right that I share my knowledge for all of you to benefit. So let’s get straight to it.
Categories are one of the most important ways to ensure that content on your WordPress website is organised in a clean and presentable manner. So that when viewers come onto your site, they can easily find relatable content without being bombarded by that which is useless to them. Therefore getting your categories right is fundamental for your blog or sites success!
Now.. if you haven’t previously created any categories, whether you are unsure how to or want a little guidance before you do so, then you’re in the right place.
If you haven’t already noticed, the posts you create are by default assigned the category “Uncategorized” – given that you haven’t specified a category for the post. This means yhay you are already using them without being cognizant of them.
How do I create a category?
In WordPress, there are two possible ways of creating categories: – You can follow on from here, or watch my YouTube tutorial.
1. Posts -> Categories.
By following the above directions from your ‘WordPress Admin’, you should be on the ‘Categories’ page.
In the first field, you should type in the name for your category e.g. books. Then in the second field, you want to again make a copy of your category name. However if your category name consists of more than one word, it is good practise to place a ‘-‘ in between every word e.g. if your category name is ‘book store’, your slug would be displayed ‘book-store’.
With regards to the parent dropdown box, the reason for you needing to use this is, given you want a parent-child relationship for your categories. As an example, if you have your parent category as ‘Book’. Then you may want to have child categories for ‘Book’ such as ‘Fiction’ and ‘Non-Fiction’.
The last text box is for a description. I would recommend that you add a description as it will help in the SEO of your site. However it is not compulsory to have a description for your categories.
Finally, click ‘Add New Category’ and your newly created category should display in the box on the right.
2. Posts -> Add New -> + Add New Category
Once you are on the post creation page and you have selected the ‘+ Add New Category’ option, you can simply type in the name of the category that you want to create and then select a parent category if necessary.
Finally click on the ‘Add New Category’ Button and VOILA!
How do I edit or modify a category?
Posts -> Categories
Once you are on the Categories screen, hover over the category that you want to edit and then click ‘Edit’. You will be directed to a new screen where you can edit the name, slug, parent, description – even add media to the description.
You can also, from the categories screen, delete categories that you no longer require. This does not remove any of your posts, instead it simply assigns the posts to your default category.
How do I change my default category?
Settings -> Writing
When you arrive on the ‘Writing Settings’ screen, you can modify the default category by selecting the drop-down that is next to the text ‘Default Post Category’. Select the category you want the default to be and finally click the button ‘Save Changes’ at the bottom of the screen.
While you are on the page you could have a look and also change the ‘Default Post Format’. Have a play around and see what works best for you.
How can I make my categories visible to the viewers of my site?
1. Appearance -> Widgets
From the list of widgets you should see ‘Categories’. Drag and drop this to either your ‘sidebars’ or your ‘footer widget areas’. Given that the sidebars and footers are actively displayed on your site, you should see the list of categories displayed on your site. Categories that you haven’t currently used, will not be displayed.
2. Appearance -> Menus
Select the categories that you want to display in your menu – using the checkboxes associated with them. Next click the ‘Add To Menu’ button and then finally click ‘Save Menu’.
The categories will now display in the menu on your site.
How do I assign my posts to categories?
There are two routes to assigning categories to your posts – seems to be two ways for many things, a little wisdom there!
The First Way
When creating a new post, the categories section will be visible on the right hand side of the screen. Simply select the category you want the post to be linked to. When you publish the post, it will then be assigned to the specified category.
The Second Way
Go to your list of posts, ‘Posts -> All Posts’. Hover over the desired post and then click ‘Quick Edit’. You should be displayed with several options related to the post you want to edit; such as tags, title, slug etc. One of the options will also be to modify the category of the post. Once you have selected the category/ies you want the post to be linked to, simply click ‘Update’ to make the changes.
A little bonus for you all!
Ever wondered how you can get your posts to be displayed on specific pages? – Here is the answer!
Thats all for WordPress Categories! Having problems deciding what theme to use?
Peace and Love .. Jenaid Ahmed