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HTML editor

A HTML editor is 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 display the document to be edited in the same way that it will be displayed in the browser later. HTML editors are often part of a integrated development environment.

How does it work

An HTML editor is a simple text-based computer program. An experienced programmer can also use a text editor to write HTML code.

However, HTML editors differ from pure text editors in that they are integrated into a development environment or offer many additional functions:

  • Automatic detection of HTML tags.
  • Syntax error detection.
  • Autocomplete function.
  • Shortcuts for common tags.
  • Wide use for PHP.
  • Editing HTML code directly in the design of a web document (WYSIWYG editors).


Two different types can be distinguished, text-based HTML editors and WYSIWYG editors.

Text-based HTML editors

The format editor assumes that you are familiar with HTML and know how to use its tags. Good text-based editors also include a correction feature, which highlights syntax errors in color. Some programs can also be used with an autocomplete function.

WYSIWYG editors

A WYSIWYG editor is also suitable for users without knowledge of HTML. The acronym "WYSIWYG" stands for "what you see is what you get" and expresses precisely what an HTML editor does. With it, you can edit the HTML code in the design of the respective web portal. The editor converts all inputs directly to HTML or CSS. The functions are similar to those of the most popular programs. Changes to text or images are visible immediately after editing. WYSIWYG editors are used for CMS and blogging systems like WordPress or Joomla, for example.

Free HTML editors

A large number of HTML editors are available for download on the Internet. The free programs are not inferior to the paid versions with respect to their basic functions.

  • Netbeans: The Netbeans free HTML editor works within an IDE (integrated development environment). It is enabled for Windows, iOS and Linux and also supports HTML5. Automatic error correction helps prevent errors.
  • Notepad ++- Slim and simple HTML editor, has a syntax highlighting and autocomplete function. At the same time, multiple documents can be edited on multiple tabs.
  • phase 5: a neat HTML editor, which provides numerous very cool and convenient features, such as syntax highlighting and a checker device. At the same time, the code can also be loaded in a browser view. This editor is free for home, school and office use. It is only enabled for Windows.
  • NVU / KompoZer: The NVU is a WYSIWYG editor, which is especially suitable for creating websites. An integrated FTP uploader allows you to upload the created HTML page directly to the Internet. A direct descendant of the same function is KompoZer. Both programs can be used with Windows, Linux and iOS.
  • Google Web Designer: This free software from Google offers full functionality and is also suitable for full website design. It can be used both in WYSIWYG mode and in code view for HTML, CSS, JavaScript or XML. At the same time, Google Web Designer supports the insertion of 3D and HTML 5 objects. It is compatible with Windows and iOS.
  • Amaya: W3C's free HTML editor is particularly notable because it includes standards that are still under development. For this reason, Amaya is suitable for new software demos.
  • Hex Editor: This HTML editor is intended for professionals looking to edit the control code in the hexadecimal system at the same time as the HTML code.
  • Microsoft Expression Web: This huge Microsoft software allows the creation of complete web pages. You can choose the font view or a WYSIWYG editor. A smart proofing function for HTML and PHP is built in.

Paid HTML editors

Paid HTML editors are often part of a complete development environment for new websites and are used by professional web designers.

  • Adobe Dreamweaver: This editor is one of the most popular programs for professional users.
  • Corel Draw - Graphics Suite: Graphics Suite Corel is equivalent to Adobe Dreamweaver and is a powerful program for web designers and developers.
  • RapidWeaver: This editor is suitable for iOS and also for hobbyist use.

Relevance for SEO

HTML editors are important tools for optimizing a page. On the one hand, errors in the source code can be detected and corrected. Errors in programming can lead to the devaluation of a website by a search engine.

On the other hand, editors also help to make the most of the source code to reduce the loading time of a web portal. After all, the slimmer the code, the better search engine bots can crawl. Hence, crawlers reach more documents on the internal link structure.

WYSIWYG editors have the added advantage, as the user can immediately see how changes to the code impact the final document. Therefore, HTML editors also help to maximize the usability of a web page, for example, when images or buttons with call-to-action items must be relocated after a web analysis to increase the page's CTR. .