First things first, what is HTML?
HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language) is the predominant code language for web pages. What you see when viewing a website is the result of that page’s HTML source code, which browsers read and display as web pages. Like all languages, HTML has evolved to fit the needs of those using it. Also like any other language, HTML has rules and standards that must be met for browsers to read and display pages correctly.
HTML validation is kind of like a ‘spelling and grammar check’ for websites. It ensures that your web pages meet the HTML standards and rules. You might think “Why does it matter if my HTML is valid? As long as my site looks good in the browser, no one is going to know if my source code is validated.” While it’s true that the average user isn’t going to go snooping around in your code, there are a few very good reasons to validate your HTML.
- Browser Compatibility
Even if a website looks perfect to you, there’s no guarantee that it will look exactly the same on a different computer, or in a different browser. Some browsers overlook, or automatically correct some HTML errors, while others can completely change the look and feel of a page when encountering an error (or even not display the page at all!). Different versions of the same browser can cause these issues as well. Making sure your code meets HTML standards is one of the easiest and most helpful ways of decreasing the risk of browser incompatibility issues.
- SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
Errors in your code can create some serious problems for search engines trying to index your site content. While some errors may only affect a small section of a web page, others can completely disable a page from being crawled and indexed. Validating your site’s HTML ensures that search engines are able to accurately and efficiently crawl your site content and meta-data. There is no point in putting valuable time and money into SEO if errors in your site code are preventing search engines from correctly reading it.
- Save Time
Having code riddled with errors can make updating and maintaining websites much more difficult and time-consuming than necessary. Keeping your code clean, organized, and up-to-standards saves time for web designers and developers and makes your site look more professional. It’s a win-win solution for everyone!
So, what are you waiting for? Contact us now to clean up your act – and your code!