Peering behind the screen of a database or website reveals the methods and benefits of incorporating a taxonomy. A digital taxonomy file contains terms, term records with details of relationships and a hierarchical structure. The terms are used to categorize content and apply as metanames describing website content items. Digging deeper, the taxonomy terms are stored and associated with a relational database management system, object-oriented database or XML-based database system. Taxonomy terms can be presented to the end user in a browsable format along with term record details for additional guidance. Captured in the inverted index of search software, the terms promote findability and search success. Documents with taxonomy terms attached can be accurately retrieved regardless of where they are held, and terms can be repurposed as site labels and points of association between internal content items.