A dialogue tag is a group of words connected to a quote that let you know who said what.
“Is he here yet?” he asked.
“He is here,” she answered.
A dialog tag has to tell who spoke and how they spoke. They said it. They asked it. They answered. They replied. They moaned. They groaned. They whispered. They shouted.
“Come quick!” they shouted.
He whispered, “Okay, I’m in.”
“I don’t want to,” she fidgeted. No, she didn’t. She didn’t fidget out the words, “I don’t want to.” She said them. “I don’t want to,” she said, fidgeting.
If they said it, then they said it. Most of the time your characters will have “said” things. Don’t always try to use unique words or it will distract from the story. Use more exciting words when they fit the situation. They then can have a big impact. Here’s a list of other speech tag words from Read Write Think.