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HTML - Hypertext Markup Language

This article will cover in detail about all things HTML.
Apr 21, 2022 • 14 minute read
Updated on Mar 6, 2023 by Simon S.
Cover Photo
HTML stands for Hypertext Markup Language and is a language used to create the structure and layout of web pages.
What are the main components of HTML?
The main components of HTML are elements, tags, and attributes.
What are the uses of HTML?
HTML is used to create the structure and layout of web pages, and to display text, images, and other multimedia content on the web.
Where does HTML originate from?
HTML was first proposed in 1989 by Tim Berners-Lee as a way to create a standardized system for displaying and linking information on the internet. It was later developed and standardized by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C).
HTML, or Hypertext Markup Language, is the primary markup language of the World Wide Web (WWW) and accounts for most of the web pages and onlineapplications used today. As a matter of fact, HTML markup language is used by 94.3% of all the websites currently online, according to a survey by W3Techs,and is now considered an official web standard.
HTML is just so versatile, from promoting your brand, running an e-commerce site or even setting up a subscription-based online business, the possibilities are literally endless. For these reasons, it's really no secret that incorporating HTML development for your website and apps will do absolute wonders for the successof your business.
This article will cover in detail about all things HTML such as:
What is HTML, how does it work and why is it used?
How many types of HTML are there?
What is the difference between HTML, CSS and XML?
What a HTML developer does and what to look for when hiring one
Why do you need to hire a HTML developer?
How much does it cost to hire a HTML developer?
How do I hire an expert HTML developer on

What is HTML, how does it work and why is it used?

HTML stands for Hypertext Markup Language, and is the default language of websites and online documents. It is used to define the overall structure of your webcontent and primarily forms the backbone of most websites and online apps on the internet. HTML is maintained by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) whoare in charge of developing HTML specifications and guidelines where they also provide regular updates on web standards.
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In simple terms, hypertext is text with links that the user can just click on which then moves them to another page or part of the page. On the other hand, markup language uses plain text with special markings to define the different sections contained within a web page and instructs web servers what the style and structure of a document will look like. 
In essence, HTML basically allows web developers to create and structure web pages and its contents into paragraphs, sections, and links using markup tools such as:
HTML tags are markers that tell the web browser how the enclosed text should be displayed. HTML tags are typed inside angle brackets, < and > and containboth an opening tag and a closingtag. The file is then read by the browser which follows the instructions provided by the HTML tags to display the page correctly. The most common tags used inHTML are html, title, head and body. For example, if you want to display text in bold, you would need to write: <b>This text is bold</b>
HTML Attributes
These are tools assigned to your HTML elements that provide extra information for the text within the tags. For instance, if you wanted to hyperlink the phrase"HTML is fun!" in your HTML document, you would use the tags <a> and </a> to specify that the text should be linked. Next, you need to instruct the browserwhere you like the text linked to by using the href attribute and inserting the link address. This can be shown in the below example: <a href="">HTML in fun!</a>
HTML Elements
HTML works by using a series of elements which you use to enclose, or wrap, various sections of the content to make it appear a certain way. An element inHTML normally includes a start tag <tag name>, close tag </tag name> and content inserted within both tags.
There are also two types of elements used in HTML: 
Block-level elements and Inline elements.
Block level-elements are used to structure the main part of a web page by separating a page into logical blocks. For example, the content within a particulardocument could be structured via a set of elements like paragraphs, a list of bullet points, or including images and data tables.
On the other hand, Inline elements are used to provide text with a distinct function and are mostly used alongside other HTML elements. As such, inline elementscan be used in a number of ways such as to make a word or image hyperlink to another website, display the font of text larger or smaller, bolded or in italics.
Once the HTML document is completed, it is saved with an extension .html or htm and then uploaded to the web to display how it looks online. The way internetbrowsers present the HTML document is by the use of these HTML elements to interpret the content of the web page and then render them exactly on the screenin a well-organised and formatted way.
To sum up, it goes without saying that HTML web development has a wide range of real world applications including:
Publishing online documents similar to word processing platforms.
Design forms for business and financial transactions.
Be used in searching for specific information on the web.
Making online reservations and ordering products.
To incorporate spead-sheets and multimedia like video and sound clips, or other applications directly within a web document.
Facilitating internet navigation to assist users to easily move between websites via hypertext.
There are a number of different methods you can use to implement styles into an HTML document to create neat and structured content into your website.
Basically, it all comes down to using three types of style sheets:
Inline Style Sheets
Inline style sheets allow you to include styles directly to an HTML element. Instead of defining the style once, then applying it against all instances of an element,you only need to apply the style to the instance you want it to apply to. While inline styles are a useful way to add styles to an HTML document, it can also makea website much harder to maintain.
Embedded Style Sheets
Embedded or internal style sheets allow you to define styles for the whole HTML document in one place. They are added to the head section of the document toinstruct on the style rules to be embedded within a web page. Embedded style sheets are normally suited for documents with specific design needs and are animprovement on inline style sheets.
External Style Sheets
An external style sheet allows you to apply styles to a whole website. This is done by creating a separate file that contains all style information where the file isthen linked to multiple HTML pages. What this means is that you only need to set the styles for every element once. This in turn enables you to update the styleof your entire website by only needing to do it in one place.

How many types of HTML are there?

The HTML markup language has gone through a number of changes where it has evolved dramatically over the years. Different versions of HTML have beenreleased since it was originally developed back in 1993 to make it more powerful and flexible.
So lets now delve into the individual differences between each version of HTML:
HTML 1.0
HTML 1.0 was the first version of HTML which was released in 1993. It had very basic and limited functions like the capability of linking different pages andcontained just 20 HTML elements. It didn’t support many advanced features such as text and font styling or tables etc, so suffice to say, it had its limitationsas a markup language.
HTML 2.0
HTML 2.0 was the second version of HTML released in 1995 as a further expansion of HTML 1.0. It more or less included all the features from the originalversion with a few more added into it for good measure. It defined various core HTML features and set the standard for web design up until 1997.
HTML 3.2
The next revision released in 1997 was HTML 3.2 which further improved upon HTML tags and had better support for new form elements. It had a range of newfeatures such as tables and special character elements like superscript/subscript etc. The most noteworthy inclusion in HTML 3.2 was CSS support for bettercompatibility on most web browsers.
HTML 4.01
HTML 4.01 was the following iteration released in 1999 and was a huge leap in terms of HTML standards. It further expanded upon support of cascade stylingsheets to allow an external CSS file to be developed and built into HTML itself. HTML 4.01 also brought in features including scripting, improved forms andtables and ability to embed objects.
The most recent version released in 2014 was HTML 5 which became the new specification currently used by most developers today. It incorporates an extensivelist of HTML tags and was much more interactive for improved useability. It also supports a range of media applications including video and audio content.
Another extremely useful inclusion in HTML 5 is that it can be divided into three distinctive Doctypes. So what is a doctype you say? Basically, it stands for adocument type declaration which essentially tells the web browser information on what document type it should expect to receive.
Now lets go over what these three different Doctype categories are:
Transitional Doctype
Firstly, we have the transitional doctype which is the most typically used type of HTML. It has a very adaptable syntax so if any tags are misspelt, the browserdoes not correct these errors, and the content is displayed the best way it can.This is called the 'best effort' concept. By using transitional doctype, it makes it moreharder to maintain websites since it mixes the presentation and structure of the document markup.
Strict Doctype
Next, we have the strict doctype that is intended to return rules into HTML to make it more stable. It also separates the structure and presentation of documents bynot allowing any presentation markup in it. For instance, it requires the developer to close all tags that are opened which results in more cleaner code and also helpsweb pages to load quicker.
Frameset Doctype
Lastly, a frameset doctype allows web developers to create a mixture of HTML documents where several documents can be connected into one screen. Thismethod is regularly used to create a menu system where you can select a menu item on the left side of the screen, and just the right side of the screen reloadswith the menu staying in place.

What is the difference between HTML, CSS and XML?

HTML and CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) are two of the core technologies for building Web pages. HTML provides the structure of the page, whilst CSS providesthe visual and audio layout of web pages. CSS allows you to specify how each HTML element is presented to the user and adapt it for a variety of devices foreither small or large screens. With CSS, the developer can control aspects of a web page such as colours, layout and fonts and enables the author to apply set stylesacross their websites.
HTML can be somewhat limited when it comes to the presentation of its elements, which is not that useful if you're wanting your website to have a unique look orfeel. That is when CSS comes into the picture since it's not the purpose of HTML to accomplish these types of things. By using CSS, it becomes much simpler tospecify attributes like size and typeface of fonts, text and background colours, alignment of text and images, space between elements and so much more.
The key benefit of CSS is that it can be used independently from HTML and can work with any XML- based markup language. This separation between the twolanguages makes it much more simpler for the web developer to maintain websites, customise web pages to suit different environments, and share style sheetsacross multiple web pages.
On the other hand, XML (Extensible Markup Language) is a simple text-based format quite similar to HTML, but without the predefined tags being used. Rather,you need to define your own tags designed exactly for your requirements in your digital document. The major difference between HTML and XML is that HTMLpurely displays data and sets the structure of a webpage, while XML stores and transfers data such as documents, books, transactions, invoices etc.
Additionally, XHTML (Extensible Hypertext Markup Language) is a variation of HTML which uses the syntax XML. In effect, XHTML has pretty much the sameelements as HTML such as paragraphs, lists and tables with the main difference being the syntax used varies slightly. Because XHTML is an actual XMLapplication, you can also use other XML tools with it to create and edit XML files.
altSource: Unsplash

What a HTML developer does and what to look for when hiring one

Quite simply, HTML developers are responsible for the overall end-to-end coding of web sites. Also known as web programmers or web coders, they are involvedin overseeing HTML projects including coding requirements, web application development and may also provide technical support to website users.
HTML developers are also in charge of making sure websites operate correctly on different browsers, both mobile and desktop, by thorough testing. Once the sitegoes live, they then continue to provide maintenance such as system updates and checking for compatibility issues.
The most common duties that a HTML developer carries out are:
Works on coding for the whole website from end-to-end.
Creating HTML design frameworks.
Testing for errors in code and front-end web applications.
Ensuring the website is functional and responsive, to work on all devices.
Integrate multimedia like video, sound clips, and animation into websites.
Ensuring cross-platform compatibility to work on various operating systems.
Undertaking website performance and usability tests.
Providing user technical support.
When it comes to creating a website, HTML developers have the crucial task of making their client's distinct vision a reality. Since different types of sites requirecompletely different applications, they must ensure they create the right types of websites to fit the client's exact needs. Take for example, an ecommerce sitewhich would require a payment processing app, as opposed to a gaming site which would need to properly handle advanced graphics. Ultimately, it's the job of thedeveloper to decide what applications and designs will best suit the site perfectly.
Additionally, you should be aware that some developers take care of all aspects of a website's construction, where others just specialise in a precise aspect of it.So, you just need to define exactly what your requirements are for your particular project to determine what type of developer you need to hire. For instance, doyou just need a developer to write web design code for your site or do you need someone to completely develop the site's layout including integrating graphics,applications and other rich content.
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Here are some helpful tips you can use to find the right HTML developer:
Define what your technology needs are. What functions do you need right now?
Define what your business needs are. How will your website drive sales?
Work out your budget and timeframe. How much money and time can you afford?
Decide on the developer's skills you need. Can they easily handle your project?
Ask for and evaluate their past work. Do they deliver quality work on time?
How do you want your website to look and feel? E.g. Minimal or with rich features?
Finding the ideal HTML developer can prove to be extremely challenging, with so many options out there to choose from. By following the advice above, itshouldn't be too difficult to find a developer that caters for all your needs. That's why by doing a bit of homework, whether you're looking for a developer for ashort or long term basis, you are bound to find the right person on Freelancer.

Why do you need to hire a HTML developer?

So you want to take your business to the next level by creating or updating your website? With all of the competition out there, it's a no-brainer that hiring anexpert HTML developer will keep you at the cutting edge of web design. They can greatly help you and your business to unlock the full potential of the very latestin web development capability.
Are you looking for an experienced HTML developer to design, code and implement your website project? By hiring an expert HTML developer, you can becertain that your project is safely in the hands of an experienced digital professional. They can help to fully design your website from top to bottom for optimumquality and functionality, while also enhancing the interactivity and visual structure of your site.
Some reasons why you may need to hire a HTML developer would be:
To develop consistent and well-designed code using the best practices
To create user interfaces using standard HTML/CSS practices.
To develop testing plans for all browsers and devices to ensure they can access the content
Maintain up to date knowledge of new industry trends and technologies.
Integrate multimedia like video, sound clips, and animation into websites.
Ensuring cross-platform compatibility to work on various operating systems.
Undertaking website performance and usability tests.
Providing user technical support to your clients.
These days, anyone can pretty much build their own website. But what it comes down to is how professional and functional you want it to look and feel. That'swhy there are so many smart reasons to hire a HTML developer. Simply put, they can accomplish things that you are not able to do and in half the time. Byoutsourcing this job to an expert HTML developer, it will free up your valuable time to focus on more important things.
So rather than taking the unnecessary risk of trying to develop your website on your own, employing the services of an expert HTML developer will cut out allthe stress and effort. They can accurately determine your specific needs and deliver a fully featured and modernised website that will more than meet yourexpectations. The real question you need to ask yourself is: Why wouldn't you hire one?
altSource: Unsplash

How much does it cost to hire a HTML developer?

So you have made the first decision of hiring a HTML developer. Now comes the million dollar question: How much is it going to cost you? Estimating how mucha HTML developer will cost can be somewhat tricky as the price depends of a few factors like:
The experience and skill level of the developer.
What region the developer is based in.
The overall size and complexity of your project.
How long the developer needs to spend on your project.
How the developer prices their services (E.g. Fixed or hourly rates).
Geographic location plays a big role in determining the cost of a freelance HTML developer. For example, a developer in the United States, UK or Australia willusually charge a higher price than a developer from Eastern Europe or Asia. With this in mind, the average hourly rates charged by HTML developers can rangebetween $15 to $50+ for a basic front-end developer, $35 to $100+ for an intermediate to advanced front-end developer, and $40 to $150+ for a full stack developer.

Hourly Fee vs Fixed Fee

Another question to ask yourself is if you wish to pay your HTML developer an hourly rate or a fixed fee. Both these options have their pros and cons so it reallycomes down to your particular project. A smaller project may need a more experienced developer who works faster with less mistakes, hence an hourly rate wouldbe suitable. On the other hand, a larger project will most likely be prone to potential issues and re-work, so it would be wiser to agree on a fixed price structure.
One of the major benefits of hiring freelance developers on Freelancer is that you have access to a treasure-trove of talented experts from around the world.The great advantage of this is that you can compare developers from different countries to find the best value for money freelancers. What's not to love about that?

How do I hire an expert HTML developer on Freelancer?

The effort of hiring an expert HTML developer can feel like an uphill battle, especially if you need a qualified professional within a very short period of time.With this said, the main advantages of hiring a HTML developer on is that you can choose from two flexible options:
Post your project - it's so easy to post a project where you just need to outline a brief description of your project requirements and attach any supporting documents. Once your project is online, sit tight and and in no time at all, you will hopefully see bids rolling in from interested candidates to work on your project. Once you’ve received a few offers, it's then time to review each freelancer's profile to decide if they are right for your needs.
Hire a freelancer directly - the benefit of hiring a freelancer directly is you have the ability to search through the Freelancer Directory for candidates with the ideal skills and experience you're after. Once you've selected a few freelancers, you can then review their public profiles to decide who to contact to offer your project to. It's such a straight forward process and one of the fastest ways to find the right HTML developer to hire.
So whatever option you choose in hiring a freelancer, you should then ask some direct questions about what services they can provide. This will filter out yourlist of freelancers to make sure that you are contacted by only serious candidates who are able to complete your project.
Another task is to set your budget and timeframe to complete your project. Bear in mind that these need to be realistic to the work required to be done. If they are not reasonable, you may not attract the best candidates and have to start all over again.
So try it out for yourself today, find your next freelance HTML developer by starting your search now.
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