Using tags and tagclouds to describe your content in Drupal

Tags and tagclouds are all over the web nowadays. Almost every blog or website has it. Setting up a tagging system in Drupal is very easy. If you are using Drupal as a weblog, this might be a great feature for your website. Heck, it is a great feature even if you're not using Drupal as blog.

First, let's see what tags and tagclouds are. Tag is like a description. It describes some piece of content. So, if you were writing a page about your summer holiday in Greece, you would "tag" (describe) that page with these tags:

vacation, holiday, summer, Greece...

Well, you get the idea. The point is, you can put as many tags as you want. In other words, you can describe your content with as many words as you can. That way people can have an idea of what your article is about before they even read it.

Look at this article at the top (or any other article on this website). It has several tags associated to it. And also, there is a "Tags" block on this website, which lists all the tags that I have used to describe all articles. It makes a so-called "tag-cloud".

ok here we go :) Enough theory, let's set up tags and show that wonderful tagcloud :)

  • Go to Administer > Content management > Categories. We have to add new vocabulary for our tags. So, click "Add vocabulary".
  • For "Vocabulary name" write "Articles". It makes sense to name our vocabulary "Articles", because we are writing articles on our website.
  • Under "Types", select type of content that you would like to associate with this vocabulary. In my case it is "Page" type of content.
  • For "Hierarchy" select "Single".
  • Check "Free tagging".
  • I would recommend you check "Required" as well. That way you will be forced to "tag" every node you create for the content type you've selected. If you are tagging, then tag'em all :-)
  • Click Submit
  • Download and install Tagadelic module for Drupal.

Now, when you create some articles, and when you tag them, your content will be described or "tagged". Tagadelic module will automatically create block for every vocabulary that you are free-tagging. So if you go to "Administer > Site building > Blocks", you will find block named "tags in Articles". Go ahead and make it visble somewhere (left or right sidebar).

There! Now your tagcloud is ready. What's cool about tagadelic module is that it gives you tagcloud with tags that are displayed with fonts of different sizes - according to their "weight". Weight is actually how many times you have used a tag to describe a content. The bigger font size is - greater weight a tag has, which means you have used that tag a lot.

As you are adding more and more articles, meaning as you are tagging more and more content, your tagcloud will be automatically updated with weights. It's pretty cool stuff. Also, don't forget to play around with Tagadelic settings in Administer > Site configuration > Tagadelic configuration.

Happy tagging!