Why You Should Learn a Little HTML & CSS and How

This post may seem a little strange—why would a digital marketing agency want anyone else to learn HTML when that is what we do for you? We not only come in handy during the how of website design (or the HTML/CSS), where we really shine is the why. We have years of experience to back up why digital marketing pieces should be designed a certain way based on the audience, the media, and to meet specific goals. But enough tooting our own horn!

Why should you learn HTML?

The Mystifying HTML Tab

The De-Mystify The HTML Tab

We often receive calls about text formatting that has gone astray while using a WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) editor on a website. Although we try, we aren’t always able to fool-proof a WordPress website (or any other CMS that includes a WYSIWYG editor) so that text and imagery always look exactly as they did the day we handed over the website. Sometimes we need to add special HTML tags into the content for specific formatting to fit into the website’s design. When editing in Visual mode, these tags may be moved or removed when altering large amounts of content.

The HTML tab holds the secret to this formatting. If you know how HTML works, it can be easier to edit your content through the HTML editor than in the Visual editor without accidentally removing tags added for formatting. If you’ve ever pasted straight from Microsoft Word into a WYSIWYG editor and looked at the resulting HTML, you would see extraneous formatting that can be hard to remove without manually deleting it from the HTML. Learn a little HTML and you could fix those issues in a jiffy!

How can you learn HTML?

Codecademy is a free, online tool for learning to code. They’ve added a Web Fundamentals track that teaches HTML and CSS basics through short exercises and mini-projects. Grab a cup of coffee one Saturday morning before the kids wake up and go through a couple of the exercises. We recommend at least the first three HTML lessons to help with your WYSIWYG editors. After a few lessons, you’ll be able to tackle a lot of those formatting issues you’ve been having on your own!