How to Clean Up Tags in WordPress

Posted by Mayank on July 8, 2011 in Website

WordPress has this interesting β€œtag” feature, which allows you to tag your posts and then using tags, all your posts which have a particular tag can be retrieved. This is especially helpful for readers, who are looking to read further on the topic. While tags help you provide another category of your posts, they suffer from a serious problem – there are no ways to organize them. Over time, as your tag list grow, it becomes out of control and your database is full of tags, which you either have no use for them or have used only once.

I’m not sure of this, but it is also reported that your huge tag list is also a contributing factor for the slow load of your web pages. Hence, cleaning up the tags will help speed up your website. It has especially helped me because early in my days of being a blogger, I used a plugin called Auto Tagger or something and it used to automatically identify the tags from the posts you’ve written. Since, I’m all for automation and somehow concluded that it will help improve my SERPs, I used that plugin for quite some time, only to end up with huge list of tags and it would have taken me years to clean up the mess!

Also, I found quite a few tags which were the same except for the case, for example : FaceTime, Facetime and facetime – All 3 are 3 different tags. For such cases, it is best to merge them into one rather than delete all of them.

This is when I found an excellent plugin to tame the tags! The plugin is named Term Management Tools

Install this plugin, activate it and head over to Posts -> Post Tags

post tags

Select the tags which have 0 posts and select the bulk option to delete them and click Apply.

delete tags

Though I’ve found a stability issue with this plugin – it gives a weird php error when you try to do a bulk delete. It happens especially for the tags that you’ve removed. Don’t worry about this and just delete those tags manually (you get this option to manually delete when you select and hover over that particular tag). Even while deleting manually, you might get this error “An unidentified error has occurred.” Don’t worry about it – the tag has already been deleted.

Next sort your tags as per Name and then edit them or delete the duplicate ones.

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