You know that feeling you get when you’ve created the perfect email but you just can’t get the formatting quite right? Welcome to every marketer’s nightmare. Luckily, there is an easy solution to all of your formatting problems. We all know that coding can be intimidating for beginners.. but it can make a huge difference in your digital marketing ventures.

Code Academy describes HTML as the skeleton that gives every web page structure. If you know the basic anatomy of the skeleton, your ability to perform digitally will drastically improve. There are three main reasons that every recent graduate should learn HTML and CSS:

1. It Makes You More Hirable

More and more people are finding themselves at “coding boot camp” these days. Even more surprising is that 70% of these new students already have college degrees. You’re telling me that my Sociology degree might not actually land me my dream job?

Yes, that’s exactly what I’m saying.

Take it from someone who has recently entered the job market – competition is stiff. Bloomberg has found that one of the main reasons for this is because “colleges are preparing students for things that employers were hiring for 15 years ago.”

Not only will learning how to code increase the chances of getting hired in the first place, it will also bump up your salary *Fingers crossed*. Only six months after graduating from General Assembly, 59% of students saw a salary increase that averaged $23,000.

*Cha-ching*

2. HTML Will Help You Become a “Full Stack Marketer”

The competition for jobs is particularly strained in the marketing industry. Even though there has been a growth in the digital community, many smaller startups expect a more well-rounded knowledge base.

A full stack marketer has a “working knowledge of all modern marketing tactics.” In other words, they can do anything general. From SEO to A/B testing, these individuals can offer a whole lot of growth for businesses that are just getting started. One of these skills is basic HTML and CSS knowledge.

 

There are SO many things that you can do with HTML. Understanding how to make minor changes to emails, online content, and web pages can make you that much more efficient as a marketer.

It’s also helpful to be able to communicate with your UI/UX designers. Knowing HTML allows you to speak the same language. This ensures that your ideas are being properly communicated between the marketing and design departments. If that’s not enough for you, HubSpot found seven instances where you will kick yourself for not knowing HTML.

After learning about what a difference HTML makes in your career, I decided to begin the HTML & CSS course with Code Academy. This site offers FREE lessons on coding fundamentals.

 

Even though I already have a basic understanding of HTML from past projects, these lessons helped me fine tune my skills. In two short hours, I was able to complete 41% of the tutorial. The course taught me how to properly insert images, include links, and format text for web pages.

The best thing about the course is that you can go at your own pace. It slowly breaks down the basics of coding bit by bit. For those of you who are looking to add HTML skills to your resume, I highly recommend Code Academy. Once you get started, you’ll be a full stack marketer in no time.

3. It Teaches You Basic Web Design

Learning HTML has helped my develop my personal website over the last several months. I chose WordPress because it is heavily focused on blogs while remaining highly customizable. After learning more detailed web design with Code Academy, I decided to give Squarespace a try to practice my new skills.

Everyone loves a good throw pillow. I decided to make an e-commerce site called “Pillow Talk” that sells 100% cotton pillows. After about half an hour of messing around, here is the homepage I developed.

Now there are a couple things I love about Squarespace and several things that can be improved. Here is my review:

Pros:

  • Aesthetically pleasing designs with modern interfaces
  • Wide variety of page styles and layouts
  • Built in stock photo browser and logo generation
  • Analytics to monitor your site’s traffic and progress

Cons:

  • Not highly customizable – designs are rigid and restrictive
  • Difficult to upload and resize images
  • Your site cannot go live until you pay for the service (WordPress offers free versions)

Overall, Squarespace is a great platform to build e-commerce websites. I may be biased but WordPress seems to be more user-friendly because it gives you access to HTML. This gives you the opportunity to fully customize your website to meet your business needs. However, Squarespace is a great option for beginners looking for a visually appealing website.

Stay tuned for updates on the rest of my Code Academy experience as well as additional tips for digital marketers.

Your marketing guru,

Angie

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