By Anne White
Deciding on a good taxonomy structure is very important for both SEO and the usability of your site. To learn more about setting a taxonomy strategy for your site, take a look at our “Setting a taxonomy strategy” guide. Your own taxonomy should be carefully considered and researched before it is applied, however, as part of your research, it may be helpful to take a look at some popular and commonly used taxonomy structures, as well as some other handy tips and tricks for your own taxonomy.
Before you start, you should know roughly what sort of content you are going to produce on your site. There are some types of taxonomy that are used broadly across sites, but even websites based on very similar topics may require different taxonomy strategies and categories due to the fact that all content is unique. As well as fitting your unique content, usually categories, tags, and other taxonomy should be closely linked to the brand or client’s SEO strategy, therefore, it is important to consider this before creating your strategy. Forcing your taxonomy structure to fit that of another website’s, even if it does not fit your own content, will lead to bad usability and confusing organisation of your site, therefore damaging your SEO. Taxonomy is a very important aspect of SEO, therefore, your SEO and taxonomy strategies should be carefully linked. It goes without saying, therefore, that websites based on very different topics will require very different taxonomy. With that in mind, we are going to take a look at some popular and commonly used taxonomies within asset management websites.
The native WordPress taxonomies, categories and tags, are widely used by most websites. Tags can vary greatly between websites, even those that are very similar in structure or topic, as they are specific to individual content. If you are creating high-quality, unique content you should have unique tags.
Similarly, categories can also vary greatly across websites. Again, these should be tailored to the sort of content that you will be using on your site. However, categories are meant to be broad encapsulations of your content and should therefore not be too specific to individual posts. This means that there may be overlap between categories used on sites with similar topics. Take a look at some websites that produce similar content to your own, and the sort of categories they are using. For example, CBRE global investors use a limited range of categories related to real estate and infrastructure, whilst Motley Fool Asset Management include topics such as announcement, and fund performance.
It is popular on many asset management websites to use asset classes for categories, and to organise their posts using these. In this case, many of the categories will be the same across multiple sites. Popular asset class categories include equities, fixed income, multi-asset, and alternatives. This style of category can be found on both Merian Global Investors and BMO Global Asset Management, as well as many others. For asset management websites, this is a popular taxonomy strategy, however, you should only use this if it matches your own content and your own SEO strategy.
Some sites may use categories in lieu of other custom taxonomies, particularly if they do not have a large amount of content to organise. However, there are also a number of other popular custom taxonomies that are often used alongside categories and tags, or even in the place of them. Media types, or content types, are often used as a way of distinguishing between different forms of content. This can mean either the type of media, such as videos, podcasts, or articles – as seen on Merian – or the type of content, such as news, insights, or press releases – as seen on BNY Mellon. These will usually be the broadest taxonomy and can be identical across multiple sites.
Another popular custom taxonomy, which is used across multiple sites, is author. The author taxonomy organises content by the person who created it. Each site’s author taxonomy will be unique, as it is determined by the people who are contributing content to your site. However, it is a widely used taxonomy. Hermes Global Investment use an author taxonomy that allows their users to find articles by certain authors; Merian also use an author taxonomy that you can use to filter posts, as does Motley Fool Asset Management.
Finally, another popular, although relatively new taxonomy, is the featured taxonomy. This usually consists of a yes or no selection and can be used to determine content which is particularly important or relevant. This can also be helpful when pulling posts through to certain atoms. For example, certain insights atoms can be made to pull through only featured posts. This is very useful for highlighting posts that relate to a current event, or that are of particular interest to users.
As you can see, there are a number of popular categories and other taxonomies that are used widely across asset management websites, as well as websites based on other topics. There is good reason to use many of them: media types for distinguishing between different types of content, authors to allow your users to search for content based on who produces it. There is a reason these taxonomies are so popular and it is a good idea to draw inspiration from websites that are similar to your own. However, each taxonomy strategy should be unique to the website that it is being applied to, just as the content within that site should also be unique and original. Taxonomy should serve your individual site and its content, making it easy for your users to navigate through your posts, and find content that they want to read. It should be closely linked with an individual brand, or sites, SEO strategy. Copying other websites’ taxonomy will mean that it may not fit to your specific content, in which case the taxonomy will be useless. Therefore, when creating a taxonomy strategy, you should always consider how it serves the content you are creating, and the users who will be using your site. Although these are good examples, do not feel you have to use any of them, your taxonomy is unique to your site, and you are welcome to use any categories and taxonomy that you choose.