After moving to a fully ad-supported model earlier this month, popular photo-sharing site Imgur is today introducing a new feature designed to make it easier for visitors to explore images that relate to subjects of interest to them. Called “Topics,” these new selections will now appear within Imgur’s main navigation pane, allowing users to explore areas like “Funny,” “Reaction,” “The More You Know,” as well other categories like “Current Events” or “Design & Art” for example.
The new feature is one of several ways Imgur is trying to better organize the large number of photos and images posted to its site. Over the summer, the company introduced tagging, which allowed the community to customize the Imgur experience for themselves. With tagging, users are allowed to suggest and vote on tags, and could then browse the gallery by tag, or even create their own more personalized galleries by combining tags. Users could also upvote or flag tags but not downvote them.
At the time, Imgur said that tagging could help the service better determine what sort of content was trending on its network, improve image search, and could help point users to content they wanted to see.
Topics, meanwhile, is a different take on image organization. Unlike tags, users can’t vote on Topics. Instead, Topics have to be assigned to an image before submitting it to a gallery, and there’s a limit of one topic per post. There will also be “limited duration” Topics supported for special events, says Imgur.
The idea behind Topics is to give Imgur’s users another way to discover content on the site, whose images are seen 60 billion times per month by web visitors. Topics allow these visitors to find things more serendipitously than with tags, which can often cater to more niche interests. So for example, if you’re looking for design inspiration, you may want to click into the related Topic page for Design & Art to see what’s new.
With the addition of Topics, Imgur could make the site more appealing to potential advertisers in the future, who may want to be more careful about where their ads appear on the site. But the feature also helps content creators, who want to make sure their posts are seen by the most users, the company says.
Topics are live today on Imgur.com.