WordPress Penalises for Overtagging: Post won’t show up in tag page if more than 13 tags are used

By sheer coincidence and lotsa research, I noticed (won’t say discovered coz there might be an (unwritten?) rule about the same!) the following:

  •  If your post has more than 13 tags, the post won’t show up on the respective tags’ page

i.e. if you have made a post that has, say, 20 tags, each named tag1, tag2….and so on uptil tag20 then you’ll notice upon visiting http://wordpress.com/tag/tag1 or http://wordpress.com/tag/tag2 that your post won’t be displayed in there.

I noticed that yesterday when sometime after the music review post, I checked the respective tag pages and lo! my post wasn’t there in any of the tags. I searched like a maniac for a good part of an hour or so, ctrl+f5’ed the page, cleared my cache, rebooted the lappy and tried again…..but nope…the posts just wouldn’t show up there. I then looked up older posts and there too the story was the same. A search through the WP Forums didn’t yield any result but a stray reply by a moderator about over-tagging caught my eye. I then experimented with an older post of mine which had pretty unique tags – tags that no other WPian would have. The post wouldn’t show up on these unique tag pages also. So I proceeded about in a trial and error method until at leaving the post with 13 tags, it was listed under each of the tag’s page. Viola! I had solved (my) mystery of the missing posts under the tag pages.

If your post has more than 13 tags, I urge you to click on each of the tag and check whether your post appears on that listing. Of course, with popular tags it becomes difficult to find your post since there might be newer posts with the same tag. So try out with posts having offbeat or unique or hatke tags which no one else would have and see for yourself. Do drop me a line if your findings match/don’t match mine.

Moral: Don’t tag your posts with more than 13 tags if you want it to be listed on the tag pages.

P.S: I’ll remember to tag this post with exactly 13 tags:mrgreen:

 

Update: A Support question I put in w.r.t this issue was replied today. “Please keep in mind that any posts with 12+ tags and categories will not appear in global listings.” Now it remains to be communicated to all the bloggers out  there who keep overtagging their posts unnecessarily.

8 thoughts on “WordPress Penalises for Overtagging: Post won’t show up in tag page if more than 13 tags are used

  1. Good research Chittu. Having less tags would mean identifying the right tags for the post and this could be tough. Only 13 tags is very limiting for a long post.

  2. That’s surprising…I thought tags gave you hits…the more the better😐

  3. Well that was certainly news!

    But why would you need to put about 13 tags in a post?

  4. @Santhosh: WP guys want to reduce tag spamming…which results in pretty illogical posts in totally unrelated tags. And since moderating each and every post whether it really is tagged correctly is well nigh impossible. Hence the limit.

    @Lazybug: More tags, esp. unrelated tags, will lead to odd results in searches and listings. And before people would find what they want, the results will show all nonsensical stuff.

    @Poonam: I have seen posts with 40+ Tags😛 A long post invariably can be connecte dto n number of tags. But the onus is upon the user to select the best fit.

    I got a mail from WP Support to my Q regarding this and they do say that “posts with 12+ tags and categories will not appear in global listings”

    Though moderating tag spamming is necessary, I personally feel 12 is too less a number.

  5. Remember not to be a tag whore next time.

  6. My max tag-count has been 27 for the TZP review😛

  7. Thank you, this post provided a necessary information that is not mentioned anywhere in the wordpress frequently asked question section.

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