Using HTML for Beginners

idea-pxLet me say right away that I consider myself a complete beginner using HTML (the language in which many websites are written). That's precisely why I need this tip for my own sites.

Update August 18th 2014:

Thanks to Adrienne Smith for sharing with me the site she uses when she needs to look up HTML coding 🙂 The link is in the comments, but I felt it deserved more prominence up here. Click here for HTML coding.

HTML For Beginners With WordPress Sites

To save you reading further, you'll need a WordPress site to implement this tip.

Background: Before I found out about WordPress I tried to teach myself HTML and failed dismally. Thankfully I then (through my usual circuitous route) found WordPress and thank goodness! Nevertheless, the snippets of HTML that DID stay in my head stand me in good stead when something in WordPress doesn't look quite right and I can't figure out why. Flipping over to the Text tab and looking at the HTML is often enough to let me see what's going on and tidy things up a little.

I would never create a NEW site in HTML, because WordPress is so much easier (for me!), but I'm left with a few HTML sites that I still need to maintain – for the simple reason that I still make sales from them. (It it's not broken, don't fix it!)

One of them was a site I was changing in a recent post.

BloggingAfter640whiteWhile I was hurrying to implement the changes necessary on that HTML site I had to add some new download links. For anyone who uses HTML regularly, this is a straightforward piece of HTML code to write, but it was getting late – as usual – and I just couldn't get it right. All those greater and less than signs kept ending up in the wrong place 🙂

So I resorted to a little trick I've used before to produce the right HTML coding.

How To Create HTML Links

  • I popped over into one of my WordPress blogs and added a new (draft) post.
  • In the Visual tab I created the bit of text and link that I wanted to use on my HTML site.
  • Then I switched to the Text view and copied the HTML code that had been generated.
  • Then back to my HTML website, pasted it into the source view there, and hey-presto, a working bit of code.

How To Create HTML Bullet Lists

The tip above also works well with bullet lists, such as the one above. While this is very easy HTML code (once you know what is needed!) typing it all in is a bit tedious, so use the tip above and create your bullet lists in WordPress, then copy the Text version to your HTML source.

Your Own HTML Library

I've used this tip so often that I now keep a special Draft post in my blog with all these useful bits of code ready prepared.

Let's hope I never accidentally publish it, as my HTML for beginners post would look VERY strange! If you think this tip could help someone, please share it.

Please share

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Elaine Summers - August 9, 2014

Hi Joy
HTML code looks like the shorthand I used to have to learn at school many moons ago. Have very little understanding of it think whatever is between the is the command. Might be something I have to practice over the coming months.

    Joy Healey - August 9, 2014

    Hi Elaine

    Using the code from the text tab of WordPress makes it easier. I’d never suggest using it all the time, but sometimes for widgets, or debugging your blog layout etc it’s helpful to know the basics. Joy

Adrienne - August 16, 2014

Hey Joy,

I found a site several years ago and I still use it today to help teach me the basic HTML code. It’s a great site and explains things well for me, even color codes.

I don’t really use a lot of HTML but there were some things that I wanted to know how to do that needed it.

Using the text feature in WordPress definitely does help with figuring this out but I think it’s just something that everyone ought to know.


    Joy Healey - August 17, 2014

    Hi Adrienne

    Your site sounds good! Did you ever blog about it? I’d be happy to include a link and recommend it to my readers.

    Have a great weekend. Joy

Adrienne - August 17, 2014

Hey Joy,

No, I never blogged about it, it’s something I found a long time ago back when I was doing a stand alone website and before I was even blogging.

Here is the link and I just removed the http just in case, some people don’t like links in the comments.


This is to the HTML part but you’ll see once you’re there what all it offers. It’s been a God send for me.

Enjoy your day.


    Joy Healey - August 18, 2014

    Hi Adrienne

    Wow – thanks for that, it’s a real treasure trove. I’m going to add it to the main part of my post too so that I remember where to find it again.

    Some links I don’t like, but useful ones like that are very welcome.

    Thanks for sharing that! I’ll think of you every time I use it 🙂

    Have a good day, Joy

Emebu - August 30, 2014

I think beginners should avoid the use of html at their earlier stage until someone tutors them.If there is someone out there to help why not, i was helped, you were helped as well. Thanks for sharing.

    Joy Healey - August 30, 2014

    Hi Emebu

    Completely agree with you – it was just a distraction I could have done without. of course I didn’t know about WordPress at the time!

    Thanks for your visit. Joy

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