Add an enterprise keywords column to a list or library

Users add enterprise keywords to items on a SharePoint site so that they can use the keywords for tagging and to develop a folksonomy. Enterprise keywords are a good way to capture some of the knowledge of the people who use the content. To make it easy for users to add keywords, you can add a special enterprise keywords column to a list or library. Then, to add a keyword to an item, users just select the item and enter the word or phrase they want in the item properties.

Users can add keywords in the document properties dialog

To add an enterprise keywords column to a list or library:

  1. Click Library Settings or List Settings on the ribbon for the library or list.
  2. In the Permissions and Management column, click Enterprise Metadata and Keyword Settings.
  3. On the settings page, in the Add Enterprise Keywords section, select the check box for Add an Enterprise Keywords column to this list and enable Keyword Synchronization.
More information


Disable or enable Metadata Publishing

You can control whether the terms or keywords that are added to the Managed Metadata or enterprise keywords columns in a list or library become available as keywords for social tagging. For example, if your list contains sensitive information, you might not want the keyword values to be visible. To restrict access to keywords, you might want to disable Metadata Publishing.

 Note    By default, terms from a local term set that was created in the context of a specific site collection are excluded from Metadata Publishing. Local term sets are not available for use in social tagging or as Enterprise Keywords.

To disable or enable Metadata Publishing, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the list or library for which you want to configure Metadata Publishing.
  2. On the List or Library tab of the ribbon, click List Settings or Library Settings.
  3. Under Permissions and Management, click Enterprise Metadata and Keywords Settings.
  4. In the Metadata Publishing section, under Save metadata on this list as social tags do one of the following:
  • To publish values in Managed Metadata and enterprise keywords fields to social tagging and My Site profiles, select the check box.
  • To prevent values in Managed Metadata and enterprise keywords fields from being exposed to social tagging and My Site profiles, clear the check box.
  1. Click OK.

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More about enterprise keywords

SharePoint products collect the enterprise keywords into a single, non-hierarchical term set. You can find this special term set, which is named the Keywords set, by using the Term Store Management Tool.

The keywords that users add are available to others when they use the list or library. For example, when users type similar characters in the Enterprise Keywords column of the list, SharePoint displays the keyword in a suggestion message. Additionally, if you add an enterprise keywords column to a list or library, SharePoint copies any existing document tags into the enterprise keywords column when the documents are uploaded to the list or library. This helps synchronize existing keywords with the managed metadata features.

Term Store Administrators can make the Keywords set open or closed. Whether the set is open or closed affects how users work with an enterprise keywords column in a list or library. If you add an enterprise keywords column to a list or library, site users can enter keyword values. If the Keyword set is closed, users cannot submit new keywords, but must use existing enterprise keywords or a managed term. If the Keywords term set for the site is open, users can add any text value to this column.

If appropriate, an administrator who has permission to manage can change how SharePoint products handle these keywords, and move then into a specific managed term set. Then, the keywords become available for the same kinds of uses as the other terms in that term set.

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Applies to:
SharePoint admin center, SharePoint Online Enterprise (E1), SharePoint Online Enterprise (E3 & E4), SharePoint Online Midsized Business, SharePoint Online operated by 21Vianet - Enterprise (E1 & E2), SharePoint Online operated by 21Vianet - Enterprise (E3 & E4), SharePoint Online operated by 21Vianet - Midsized Business, SharePoint operated by 21Vianet - admin center, SharePoint Server 2013 Enterprise, SharePoint Server 2013 Standard