An HTML editor is a software for editing and creating HTML code that is used for websites or other web documents. With text-based HTML editors, the source code can be edited directly. WYSIWYG editors show the document to be edited already the way it displayed in the browser later. HTML editors are usually part of an integrated development environment.
An HTML editor is a simple text-based computer program. An experienced programmer can also use a simple text editor to write HTML code.
However, HTML editors differ from pure text editors in that they are integrated in a development environment or offer numerous additional functions:
Two different types can be distinguished, text-based HTML editors, and WYSIWYG editors.
This HTML editor format assumes that you are familiar with HTML and know how to use HTML tags. Good, text-based editors also include a correction function, which highlights syntax errors in color. Some programs can also be used with an autocomplete function.
A WYSIWYG editor is also suitable for users without HTML knowledge. The acronym "WYSIWYG" stands for “what you see is what you get” and expresses exactly what such an HTML editor does. With it, you can edit the HTML code in the layout of the corresponding website. The editor converts all entries directly into HTML or CSS. The functions are similar to popular office programs. Changes to the text or images are visible right after editing. WYSIWYG editors are used for CMS and blog systems like WordPress or Joomla, for example.
A great number of HTML editors are available for download on the Internet. Free programs are actually not inferior to paid versions with regard to their basic functions.
Paid HTML editors are usually part of a complete development environment for new websites and are used by professional web designers.
HTML editors are important tools for on-page optimization. For one, errors in the source code can be detected and remedied. Errors in programming can lead to the devaluation of a website by a search engine.
On the other hand, editors also help to optimize the source code in order to reduce loading time of a website. After all, the slimmer the code is designed, the better the bots of the search engines can crawl websites. That way, the crawlers reach more documents on the internal linking structure.
WYSIWYG editors have the additional advantage that the user can immediately see how changes to the code affect the final document. Therefore, HTML editors also help in optimizing the usability of a webpage, for example, when images or buttons with call-to-action elements are to be relocated after a web analysis to increase the CTR of the page.