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Blogging: A beginners guide – Part 3

Posted by: ShackledMuse

Tagged in: topics , how to , categories , blogging , blog




When I started out with my first blog, I had no idea how categories worked. I treated them like tags. Yup, every time I typed out a new post, I just took some keywords from the post and added them to the category section. Just randomly adding them as I went along.

This is good if you work with tags. Categories is a completely different matter.

Get your categories right and your site will be more organized. If you have a widget in the sidebar that lists all your categories (and how many posts per category) the better. Now visitors to your site will be able to see which topic of interest you wrote about, and how many posts are filed under that topic/category.

Before you even start writing content for your site, take pen, a paper, a cup of coffee and go somewhere quiet. Now decide what your site is gonna be all about. What are you gonna blog about?

My site, for example, is The Shackled Muse. (that’s me) I don’t blog about a certain niche, I just blog about me being me and my quest for a balanced life. I blog a about the stuff I know and the stuff I still want to know more about.

So, like I said in Part 1 of this guide, my main categories are

  • Unshackle Your Life
  • Unshackle Your Creativity
  • Unshackled Your Budget
  • Unshackled Your Mind
  • Shackled’s Journal

That already gives you a rough idea how I structure my site and what I plan to write about.

I went one step further and added subcategories to each category. They include, but are not limited to:

  • Unshackle Your Life
    • Productivity
    • Physically
    • Emotionally
  • Unshackle Your Creativity
    • Poetry and prose
    • Digital and traditional art
    • Blogging
  • Unshackled Your Budget
    • Money savers
    • Budget recipes
  • Unshackled Your Mind
    • Neuro programming
    • Crystals
  • Shackled’s Journal
    • Opinion Pieces
    • Dear Diary
    • Anger management


    Most of the categories and subcategories on my site are still empty but I have a structure to work around. When I write about blogging tips, I’ll “file” it under Unshackle Your Creativity > Blogging.

    When I write about how I do budget shopping I’ll file it under Unshackle Your Budget > Money Savers

    Need to vent? When I write about something that really pisses me off, I’ll file it under Shackled’s Journal > Anger Management.

    And so forth. Try to keep your categories to a minimum. There’s no set rule for how many categories you need. If you write about a lot of different topics, then go ahead, add as many categories as you want. Just don’t create a new category for each and every post. Structure them, and go wild. For me, less just is more.

    One last nugget of advice, STAY AWAY FROM THE UNCATEGORIZED CATEGORY!! Its evil.

    I’ve noticed so many blogs out there, with every single post under Uncategorized. This happens when you forget to add a category to your post. It automatically goes to Uncategorized. Or maybe the blogger in question just doesn’t realize the importance of categories.

      I'm not suffering from insanity, I'm enjoying every second of it...

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     Thats all I have so far with regards to my blogging series. The topic of blogging will never be fully covered though, there's bound to be other aspects I can add to my blogging guide.  I'll sleep on it.
    Any suggestions, or questions?

    Blogging: a beginners guide - part 1
    Blogging: a beginners guide - part 2
    Comments (2)Add Comment
    written by redsaid, June 26, 2010
    I love this series of yours, by the way. Very useful advice. Been reading, just haven't commented in a while! Going to check out your other blog right now!
    written by ShackledMuse, June 28, 2010
    Thank you!

    Yeah, most of the how to guides out there are written by professional people who use professional terms. I'm no expert, but I have a blog and I break it some times... Then I go and learn how to fix again. or try to at least.

    And that is what my site is about too, I don't know how to live my life "right," but life is an interesting journey and maybe someone can benefit from my experiences.

    Thank you for your support! makes me feel like my writing might actually be going places smilies/cheesy.gif

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