Wendy Gooseberry. To stay in the frontline as a digital marketer, you need to have a basic understanding of how a website is created. Since HTML tags are among the building blocks of website creation, it’s highly important to learn how it is used in web development.
As a marketer, you’ll often be confronted by the need to make minor changes to a website. Undoubtedly, it can be hectic especially when you’re presented with a huge chunk of code. Despite modern CMS, having user-friendly interfaces and knowing basic HTML will assist you greatly. As a marketer, HTML tags will help you to save a lot of resources including time, money, and personal effort.
Read more: How to Market Your Tech Business in 2020
In this guide, I’ll help you to understand the most crucial HTML tags, how they are formatted, and how they work.
Why HTML Tags for Marketers Are Crucial?
- Learning HTML coding will enable you to understand how your site is structured.
- On the other hand, knowing your site’s structure will enable you to fix formatting issues that arise on your site effortlessly.
- Furthermore, you won’t have to depend on other people to solve every whatnot of your site. As a result, you will be more reliable for your clients.
Types of tags in HTML
- Parent tags – they contain other tags within them e.g. <p>This <b> Html guide</b></p> , <p> is parent tag.
- Standard tags – They depend on other content between the open and close tags. E.g. <p>text</p>
- Self-closing tags – They contain empty elements hence do not require a different set of code to close them, e.g. <a href=”…”/>
What is HTML?
If you’re wondering what HTML is, it is a language that is used to make web pages and apps. HTML makes use of tags that are understood by the browser in order to display the intended information. And the good news is that you can manipulate how the content on your webpage appears. You can also add images, text, insert links, lists, tables, paragraphs, and vice versa.
Furthermore, creating an HTML file is hassle-free for marketers since most CMS systems have inbuilt HTML text editors. Alternatively, you can use notepad in windows or TextEdit in Mac.
Useful HTML Tags to use
They are groups of characters that dictate the structure of web pages. The text inside the tags is displayed with the tag’s properties. For example, the <i></i> tag is used to italicize selected text on the webpage.
When browsers read the HTML code on our website, they display the right information to the users. What you put on your HTML code is used by Search engines to query information from your website to the users. For this reason, any marketer understands why SEO goes hand-in-hand with understanding HTML coding.
Typically, your website communicates with browsers and search engines using a HTML language. The only way to ensure the communication – between your site and browser/search engine – is efficient is by knowing what and how to write where on your webpage.
For marketers, you’ll also need to employ the use of Meta tags on your site. These are very crucial as they contain technical information that is useful to search engines and browsers. Additional information that is provided in the Meta tags include keywords, page description, among others. The Meta tags must be placed within the head section of a file.
Since users interact with the search engine and browser respectively accessing your website, you need to ensure that the communication between them and your site is precise. The search engine uses Meta tags to obtain the information contained in different webpages. For this reason, you need to make your snippet catchy so that it’ll attract as many clicks as possible in the SERPS, from the users.
This tag is very important because it assists the search engine to understand what a web page is about. It’s meant to help your users to know what your page is about. The title is displayed on the snippet as well as on the tabs. When a user is on another tab, the title of the web page appears on the top of the tab. It helps the user to switch back to your website.
Furthermore, the text enclosed by the tag serves as the anchor text when the link to your site is shared online. Thus, the title must be unique, interesting, and informative. If users learn about your site on social media, the title will determine whether or not they will visit your site. It should have the potential to encourage your potential clients to visit your site. However, there should be no more than 70 characters so as to avoid auto-reduction, which in most cases results in incomplete information.
Image tag (<img>)
The image tag displays images present on a page. Various image formats such as JPEG, PNG, and GIF are compatible with this tag. Images can as well be used to link other files to the current one.
Some key attributes
- Alt – displays the alternate text in case the image cannot be displayed on the browser. It’s a description of an image.
- Src – Points to the image source (gives the URL of the image location)
- Title – describes the image’s content.
The <p> tag is another basic yet widely used tag among marketers, web developers, and bloggers. Just like paragraphs appear in books, magazines, or newspapers, the same functionality is achieved on websites using the <p> tag.
The <span> is used to add custom styles to certain parts of content on a given section. For example, you can change the appearance of one word in a given sentence using this tag. <p>This guide if for <span style= “color: blue”> blue </span> marketers.</p>
The Heading tag (<h1> to <h6>)
This tag is used in structuring the text on a website in different sections. The <h> tag has six levels which must be used hierarchically. Using the <h1> tag on a webpage significantly improves its ranking, which is a key goal of every marketer.
This tag supplements the <title> tag on your website from the SEO point of view. It confirms that a user has arrived on the right page after clicking on the link. While the two tags are almost similar, they differ in that the <title> is used by search engines while the <head> tag is not.
The table and list tags (<table>, <ul>, <ol>, <li>)
Using lists and tables assists greatly when organizing information of a page. Away from that, they allow you to show in the Google answer box. If Google answer box is new to you, it is a mechanism used by Google to list the most relevant result based on the search query.
The <table> tag has other tags which go hand in hand when creating a table; <tr>, <td> and <th>. When creating a table, <tr> create rows, <td> create cells and <th> create header cells.
Useful table attributes;
- Align – places the table in position
- Bg-color – sets the background color
- Background – sets the background as an image
Back to lists, there are several tags used for this task. Either <ul> or <ol> tags are used to create unordered and ordered lists respectively. Whichever list is used, <li> tag indicates the value of each item on the list. The ordered list is usually numbered while the unordered list is bulleted.
Several tags are used to emphasize certain text on a webpage. Both the <b> tag and the <strong> tags make the text bold, the <i> tag displays the selected text in italics, and the <q> tag displays the text in quotation marks.
Text selection is key to the search engine as it denotes crucial information. The logically selected text is useful when search engines like Bing and Google are displaying information to the readers.
The <link> tags are used to inform the search engines about the relationship between pages. It also shows a connection between a page and external resources.
- Href – points to an external file (the URL)
- Rel – specifies the relationship between an existing document and a connected document.
The <a> tag
It’s used to create links on a page. You first specify the anchor text and then insert the intended URL. To ensure that the links are effective in terms of SEO, ensure you double-check them. This is yet another reason why you should know how the <a> tags are set up using HTML. It’s essential to avoid broken links for best SEO ranking results.
- Always ensure that every opened tag is closed at each instance to prevent errors from arising on your HTML code.
- Ensure your code is legible. This eases readability.
- Learn more than the basics.
HTML is a must-learn for marketers. It will save you so much in the long run. However, the biggest deal is using meaningful tags on your website so that Google’s algorithm will capture featured snippets from it.
When content from your website or blog features more regularly on Google’s featured snippets, the chances are that more and more clients will land on it. So, learn HTML basics, and that’s one objective accomplished.
While the number of tags used in HTML cannot be exhausted in this guide, it focuses on the very crucial tags that touch on their daily life. You can explore HTML deeper via free online platforms for your benefit.