How and Why to Validate your Web Site

182201_9624Who decides the correct syntax of HTML or CSS code? The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), founded in October of 1994, sets the current standards for valid HTML and CSS code. If your code does not meet these standards, this is a large problem, and should be fixed as soon as possible. Here are some issues that can arise if your code does not the HTML and CSS standards:

  • Pages do not display correctly in browsers, which can cause a whole number of problems.
  • Search engines cannot index your pages due to them not being able to read badly crafted code.
  • Modern design software cannot edit your pages correctly due to invalid code.
  • Adapting your pages to updated code standards becomes more difficult if you do not keep up with them.
  • Creating mobile versions of pages is very difficult with invalid pages to begin with.

So how do you check if you pages are valid? First off, you need to check your HTML code. Use the W3C’s Markup Validator Tool. Just enter the URL of your sites, and look at the results. Next you should probably check for broken links. Using the W3C’s Link Checker, you can find broken links in pages, invalid links, etc. Last, but certainly not least, you need to check your CSS code to ensure it is valid, and will display correctly on all browsers and platforms. Use the CSS Validator to ensure that your site meets the W3C CSS standards.

These tools will:

  • If your pages are valid, inform you of the standards that your pages meet, as well as give you embed code to put a badge on your site demonstrating the validity.
  • If they are not valid, it will give you a list of things that are invalid, so you can get to work fixing them.

Fixing invalid pages will allow your site to benefit greatly, but perhaps you are not skilled enough to fix them yourself. A web design company such as RP Design can fix the issues for you to ensure your pages are validated.


Cory is currently pursuing a Bachelor's Degree in Computer Science from Eastern Connecticut State University. Cory is skilled in XHTML, CSS, PHP, MySQL, C/C++, and Objective-C. Cory has extensive knowledge of open source software, and participates in the development of well-known software projects, such as Mozilla Firefox and Drupal.

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