laptop computer showing html codes

How to Learn HTML

HTML is one of the three main programming languages used for web development, alongside CSS and JavaScript. If you want to pursue a career as a web developer, having a strong understanding of HTML is essential.

But how do you start learning HTML? That is a good question. We’re going to help you figure out how you can learn HTML in this article. We will start by covering a bit about HTML as a skill and how learning HTML could impact your career. Then, we will go onto talking about resources you can use to learn HTML.

What is HTML?

HTML, or HyperText Markup Language, is used to outline the structure of a web page. An HTML web page contains tags, each of which represents a particular part of the web page. When you load a web page, the browser reads the HTML code behind the web page and uses that code to decide how the web page should be displayed in your browser.

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HTML is often used alongside CSS and JavaScript. CSS is used to set out the styles for a web page such as the colors of elements and the position of elements. JavaScript, on the other hand, lets you make features on your HTML page interactive.

Jobs that Require HTML Skills

Any job that involves web development will require knowledge of HTML, even if you choose to work on the back-end where you are not directly responsible for building the user-facing part of a website. The job titles that require HTML skills are:

  • HTML/CSS developer
  • Front-end web developer
  • Full-stack web developer
  • Back-end web developer
  • Web designer (UX/UI designer)
  • Systems administrators

Having an understanding of HTML is useful if you work in any role that relates to the web. For instance, you may find knowledge of HTML handy if you are an SEO specialist, as HTML comes up quite a bit in that field. Indeed, if you work in a role where you are involved in developing websites, knowing HTML is incredibly useful (and often essential).

What Industries Use HTML?

HTML is affiliated with every industry because you cannot build a website without an understanding of HTML. Even more abstract ways of building websites like using React still involve leveraging HTML. Here are a few industries which use HTML:

  • Healthcare
  • Finance
  • Online media
  • Energy
  • Governments
  • Search engines

Not all companies employ developers to write HTML code. There is a growing pool of website builders such as Squarespace which will let you build a website without knowing HTML code. These site builders are often quite advanced, allowing you to build web forms and more.

Although, more advanced websites need to be custom-built, which usually involves hiring a web developer or a web development agency because site builders can only go so far.

Salary for HTML Developers

HTML developers, who are usually referred to as web developers, command impressive salaries. According to Glassdoor, the average web developer in the United States earns $68,524 per year. That is a great salary even for a job in tech. Senior web developers earn an average salary of $87,712 per year, which shows the opportunities for salary progression as you gain more experience as a web developer.

What Skills Do I Need to Master HTML

To learn HTML, you do not need any prior knowledge of programming. A basic understanding of how the web works is useful but not required. HTML is not a complicated skill to learn but anything you already know about the web or HTML will go a long way in helping you become proficient in coding in HTML

HTML is so approachable that the language is often taught in high school computing classes. With the right attitude almost anyone can learn HTML.

Where to Learn HTML

There are plenty of courses online you can use to learn HTML. But all beginners face a tough question: where should I start? With so many resources available, you may be unsure about where you should go. While we cannot say what will be the absolute best learning resource for you, we do have a few recommendations of top beginner HTML courses which may help you find a source from which to learn HTML.

‘HTML and CSS: Design and Build Websites’

  • Author: Jon Duckett
  • Price: $15.90
  • Type of Resource: Book

This book is designed for beginners to HTML and CSS, the languages used to apply styles to websites. Starting from the beginning, you will learn about the basic building blocks of HTML and how to apply your skills to work on projects.

This book talks about HTML in the context of personal projects and professional work. By reading this book, you will develop an understanding of the myriad ways in which HTML may be useful to you.

This book is designed so you can skip to a particular chapter, or you can read the book in order. Indeed, this book is an excellent point of reference if you already know some HTML. But, the book really shines if you are just beginning your journey to learning HTML and CSS.

Learn HTML

  • Author: Codecademy
  • Price: Free
  • Type of Resource: Course

This interactive online course walks learners through the basics of coding in HTML. You will start by learning about how to structure a web page. Then, you will learn about representing data in tables and collecting information through forms. Toward the end of the course, you will learn to write semantic HTML to make your websites more accessible.

If you join this course with a Codecademy Pro membership ($19.99 per month) you will also be given three portfolio projects to build as you participate in the course. These projects will help you master the basics of HTML and give you somewhere you can point to showcase your skills.

Into to HTML and CSS

  • Author: Udacity
  • Price: Free
  • Type of Resource: Course

This course starts at the beginning and walks you through the basics of HTML and CSS. You will learn how to use HTML tags and build an understanding of the structure of a HTML document. You will be given exercises to practice your skills throughout the course.

In the second half of the course, you will learn how to write CSS rules and debug issues in a CSS document. By taking this course, you will position yourself well to take Udacity’s front-end developer Nanodegree, a complete course on web development.

HTML5 Coding Essentials and Best Practices

  • Author: W3C (on edX)
  • Price: Free
  • Type of Resource: Course

This course was developed by the W3C, who sets the standards for various web concepts including the HTML language. In this course, you will learn the basics of HTML5, from structuring a web page to using animations on your web pages.

Because this course was designed by W3C, you can feel sure that all of the code you will learn about is compliant with industry standards. By the end of graduating this course, you will have a good understanding of using HTML5 and some of the HTML5 APIs.

Web Design for Beginners: Real World Coding in HTML & CSS

  • Author: Brad Schiff (on Udemy)
  • Price: $60.00
  • Type of Resource: Course

This course, which features 51 downloadable resources and 11 hours of video content, teaches the basics of building a web page with HTML. You will cover the essentials of HTML, adding media to your web pages, and formatting your documents using semantic HTML.

This course also touches on the basics of CSS so you will graduate with a beginner’s understanding of how to apply styles to your website.

HTML Tutorials

You will find a whole range of websites with comprehensive tutorials on HTML. We have done some digging and found some excellent websites for you to take a look at. These sites are good to complement the courses above. The sites are also appropriate if you prefer to learn from written content versus videos and courses.

MDN Structuring the web with HTML

The Mozilla Developer Network website is filled with information about web development. They have a specific set of articles under the title “Structuring the web with HTML” , which cover the basics of HTML. The MDN site also has reference articles for all of the main HTML tags. Whether you are just starting to learn HTML, or need a point of reference for something you are learning, this site is worth a look.


The W3Schools HTML tutorial features dozens of tutorials on topics such as links, iframes, forms, and headings. In the style for which W3Schools is known, each article features detailed code snippets designed to help you learn a concept. You will also find interactive “Try it Yourself” exercises in which you can play around with the code from the tutorial you are reading.

The website features a library of resources on various HTML topics, from information on various HTML tags to tutorials on structuring a HTML document. If you are looking for a detailed written tutorial to guide you through a HTML topic, you should give a look.

A Guide to Learning HTML

Without HTML, we would have no internet. If you go into the “developer tools” section of your browser, you will see that even this page also exists as HTML. Every page on the internet uses HTML in some way. Text is marked up in <p> tags. The biggest titles are marked up in <h1> tags. But where should you start learning all about HTML?

To help you answer this question, we have done some research and prepared a list of the most basic HTML concepts with which you need to be familiar:

  • Syntax. You should know how to put together a basic HTML page. You should also be able to clearly explain the purpose of the tags that must be included in a HTML page.
  • Paragraphs and Text Formatting. Learn about <p> tags, headings, and the use of <pre> tags in formatting text on a web page.
  • Links. Without links, it would be very difficult to navigate around the web. You should learn how to use links in your web pages.
  • Linking to CSS and JavaScript Files. You should be able to link a HTML document to a CSS and/or a JavaScript file.
  • Images. You should know how to display an image and set the size of that image on a web page.
  • Tables and Lists. You should feel comfortable creating a table and a list and populating both tables and lists with some data.
  • Sections and Page Layout. You should know how to divide content on a web page using a <div> tag and a <section> tag. You should also learn how to structure a web page.
  • Semantics. Semantic web development helps preserve the usability of the web for everyone, especially those who depend on disability support technologies. You should understand the importance of semantics and how to format a web page using semantic HTML markup.
  • <head> Tags. What goes into a <head> tag? You should be able to answer this question and explain all of the information websites tend to display in a <head> tag.
  • Forms. You should be able to create a form in HTML that reads and accepts data submitted by a user.

Once you have learned about all of these concepts, you will have a good understanding of the basics of writing HTML documents.

How Long Does It Take to Learn HTML?

You can reasonably make your first HTML document within an hour or so of starting to learn the language. To build more complex web pages, expect to spend two or three weeks studying various HTML tags and how they work. After practicing your skills for a few more weeks, you will be able to code more advanced web pages with HTML.

The next logical step is learning how to use CSS, the technology which allows you to apply styles to your website. HTML alone does not take too much time to learn but when you start using CSS you will notice that there is so much more to study.

Should I Learn HTML?

If you want to build websites, you will need to have a strong understanding of HTML, whether you want to build the logic behind websites or the parts that a user will see. HTML is one of the building blocks of the internet and so you can bet most conversations about web development — especially with employers — will somehow drift into talking about HTML.

HTML is a valuable skill to learn. Websites are everywhere and new businesses see having websites as crucial. Companies make changes and improvements to their websites all the time. Without web developers, there would not be a web. Ask yourself whether you can imagine building websites in your career. If you can, and you feel a passion for building for the web, consider if learning HTML is right for you.

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