How to Properly Rename Categories in WordPress

Categories in WordPress help you give your website an organizational structure. As your site grows, the time will come when you’ll need to rename categories in WordPress or merge them with other categories you’ve previously created. If you are not sure how to do this, we’ll show you ways in this article. Once you’re finished reading, you’ll know how to do this task without affecting SEO strategies on your website. If you want to do this in an even simple way, hire experienced professionals to manage your WordPress website. That way, you can be sure you’re getting the most of it.

Why should you rename categories in WordPress?

In case you’ve just recently created a WordPress website, creating categories will help you set a good organizational structure. This is important as it will make your WordPress website more accessible and easier for your users to navigate. Not only will you make it simple for your visitors to find your content but it can also help your website rank higher in search engine results. After all, WordPress is the best platform for SEO!

A laptop with a WordPress page opened on it with notepad on one side and a cup of coffee on the other
If you properly rename categories in WordPress, you’ll ensure your visitors can easily navigate your website and find the content they’re interested in.

Using categories and tags is very important for organizing more content and as you keep adding more, you might need to rename categories in WordPress. Further in this article, we’ll explain how to do it properly and in a simple way.

Learn how to rename categories in WordPress

In order to rename categories in WordPress, you first need to access the WordPress category management area. Click on “Posts” then “Categories” (you can check on the picture below).

How to access categories management in WordPress
When you access category management in WordPress you’ll be able to add new categories and edit or delete the existing ones.

Two simple ways to rename categories in WordPress

There are two very simple and straightforward ways to rename categories:

  1. You can simply click on the “Quick Edit” link which is located under the category you are looking to rename (you can also check out the screenshot below). Once you click on it, you will see the quick edit meta box. Here’s where you can easily rename the category. A good idea is to also change the category’s slug because it is used to determine the URL of the category page. For instance, if the slug is “plugins”, then the category page URL will be https://yourwebpage.com/category/plugins. This is not something you have to do if you’re making a minor change. But in case you are, have in mind that you’ll have to set up a 301 redirect. When you’re finished, don’t forget to click on the “Update Category” button as you want to avoid doing it all over again.
  2. The second way allows you to add a category description besides only making minor name changes. If you want to do this, click on the “Edit” link under the category you wish to rename and you’ll be taken to the page where you can edit different category details such as name, slug, and description. You can also choose a parent category and create an even better organizational system on your website.
A list of categories in WordPress
Clicking on “Quick Edit” is the easiest way to rename categories in WordPress.

Updating the category prefix

In WordPress, you can also change the category prefix in the URLs (the category base). In order to change it, go to “Settings”, then click “Permalinks” and scroll down to “Optional”. On that page, you’ll find a form to change the category base as well as the tag base.

The default category base is “category” but you can change it to anything you like such as “topics” or “themes”. Let’s take an URL as an example again. If you would make this change, the URL would go from http://www.yourwebsite.com/category/plugins/ to http://www.yourwebsite.com/topics/plugins/.

Merge and bulk edit categories in WordPress

As your site grows, you want to find ways to simplify your organizational structure even more and thus improve the user experience for your visitors. A good way to achieve this is to merge categories into one.

In case you have similar categories, it’s useful to group them as you’ll make your WordPress website less complicated and much easier to navigate. Your site visitors will be able to quickly and easily find the content they need.

Redirecting your website users to the new category URL

In case you decided to change the category’s slug, you have to keep in mind that the old category page has changed. This means that the old URL will no longer work. In case you’ve added the category to the WordPress menu, WordPress will automatically update the menu to reflect this change.

However, if the users try to use the old category URL to look for your website, the page will no longer work. They will see a 404 Page Not Found error message instead and this can affect user experience in a very negative way. In order to avoid this, it’s very important to set up a redirection from the old URL to the new one.

We recommend setting up the 301 redirects using AIOSEO plugin. Otherwise, the change you made to category URLs could negatively impact your website’s ranking. otherwise changing the category URLs could negatively impact your website search engine rankings.

A woman sitting in front of a laptop and laughing
If you create a great organizational structure on your WordPress website, you’ll improve the user experience and thus help you attract more visitors.

One of the best ways to ensure your category pages are optimized is to use the Yoast SEO plugin. It’s a must-have plugin for any WordPress website. After all, the fact over 5 million WordPress users are actively using it says it all. This tool will help you optimize your category pages and ensure your website ranks better in search engine results.

Make sure to properly rename categories in WordPress

We hope our article helped you learn how to properly rename categories in WordPress. It’s a very simple way to give your users a better experience on your website and thus attract more traffic. You can also enable search by category in WordPress and make everything even easier.

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