Do you Need to Know HTML/CSS to Use WordPress?

Do you need to know htmlcss to use wordpress 1

WordPress is a popular platform that is utilized by many websites to create their site. WP platform can be utilized in two ways; installing the WP software on the hosting servers or developing websites for free through

When you begin to learn more about WP development, you may have certain key questions that include, “which language is WP written in?”

We also know users wondering if they need to learn JavaScript or PHP first. WP programming language is indeed a big topic; however, we will discuss everything that you must know in order to begin.

To give you an answer to the previous question, the language utilized for WP is categorized into four main languages.

WP depends on 2 declarative languages, CSS and HTML. WP also depends on 2 programming languages, PHP and JavaScript.

We are going to introduce you to WP technical languages. Continue to read and learn more about WP programming languages, the ones that you must know of and in the proper order.


  • The web has a fundamental language, HTML. This language is declarative instead of a programming one. It is an essential markup language of the internet.
  • You will have to operate with full main languages in WP: JavaScript, PHP, CSS and HTML. 
  • CSS is also a declarative language. It is a very powerful, flexible and repeatable process of style. It also has control over an HTML markup appearance.
  • PHP is a strong language to understand WP. It’s a programming language and operates on the web server, a device that hosts the static website. PHP is known to perform every form of dynamic operation. It displays HTML in order to send it out to a client’s browser/ search engines. It is the primary language of WP. Now, WP is core in itself, and almost every WordPress plugin and WordPress theme is written in PHP. So, from all the technical languages, it’s correct to say, “PHP is used to write WP”. 
  • Last but not least, JavaScript. It’s a language of programming that operates in the browser, assisting users in creating websites or web pages that are more interactive and dynamic. It is extremely powerful; however, it is a language that a user does not need to learn or understand in order to begin using WordPress.

In order to program in WP, there are two broad terms that you must be aware of; concepts and languages.

Languages that are utilized in WP programming are; JavaScript, PHP, CSS and HTML. Now, if you have basic knowledge about these languages, that is, even if you know a little about them, it would be easy for you to follow this article.

As you continue reading this article, if you feel that you’re a bit confused, then we suggest that you learn a little more about the basics of these languages before moving forward to WP developments. 

HTML – Language Utilized by the Web 

It is a universal segment of the web. Each and every page that you find on the web with content within it has been marked with a similar category of HTML. 

The full form of HTML is the Hypertext Markup Language. It is utilized to instruct web browsers (Firefox, Internet Explorer, Chrome) as to what content of the static website it should display.

When a user makes HTTP requests in the browser for the web page, the browser retrieves all the relevant information from the webserver. It utilizes static HTML instructions in order to display this information.

Basics of HTML 

I can say if you’re planning to learn it, it is one of the simplest coding languages. It operates by enclosing static HTML tags that display information data within the end and beginning ‘tags’.

Every time it has two angle brackets opposing with a particular HTML operator. An end tag is commonly called a closing tag. It has the ‘/’ prior to HTML operator. This implies the end of an HTML section.

For instance; HTML tags that display information like a new para is <p><p>. Now the information that needs to be displayed will go within the opening-closing tags.

the code of HTML can be viewed for all web pages simply by going to the page source, which you will find in the web browser.

Technically, HTML is not a “programming” language, and it is actually a “mark up” language. As we mentioned earlier, the name itself mentions markup.

A file that is HTML is a huge text document; however, due to the markup added into it, it explains the particular meaning of multiple pieces of text.

Many elements in static HTML are kept between two tags, and some of them are self-closing. This means that there is no information in between; certain things such as images do not keep text information within.

Learning HTML 

It is true that WordPress sites are built by utilizing two or even more than two languages of programming; of them all, HTML is definitely an important one.

I do agree that WP has a WYSIWYG content editor, which offers the users multiple options to customize. However, they do have an option that allows you to input information as static HTML code. Utilizing HTML can provide great granular control on certain aspects of the content displayed.

Now, if you learn HTML, it will not just help you to understand your WordPress website better, but it will also help you to create a WordPress theme, and creating themes right from scratch will need a strong knowledge of JavaScript, PHP and CSS, apart from HTML.

However, we always suggest a good place to start off is HTML. With HTML skills, it is possible to tweak themes as well as coding connotations.


The full form for CSS is Cascading Style Sheets. Most of today’s modern web pages utilize CSS for styling, and this simply means that they give their pages a particular appearance.

Now in CSS, you will be able to style HTML attributes or HTML elements. But whatever you use it for, the syntax is very uniform.

The difficult thing about CSS is knowing which style property to utilize in order to give the page the desired appearance.

Books have been written with details about this topic. Make sure to get your hands on it if you want to learn more. Let’s move on.

Utilizing CSS to Beautify WordPress Themes 

CSS and HTML work together. HTML informs us about the content being displayed, and CSS is in control of how this content must look like.

Similar to HTML, CSS is also very simple to learn. So if you are planning to learn CSS, I must say that you will produce amazing results quickly.

Now CSS is utilized in order to inform the browser what kind of font properties to utilize, images, sidebars and placing navigation.

Certain output controls are very much possible while utilizing HTML; however, with the help of CSS, a site looks more than just basic website.

The user can also add CSS instructions into the code of HTML. It can also be kept within a document which is known as a stylesheet. Stylesheet holds an extension – .css. Now, this stylesheet is ‘called’ by HTML.

The Engine of WP – PHP 

PHP operates on WP in the webserver. I must add here that whatever is true about the WordPress website, it is utilizing PHP on your server in order to create the pages and compile them. Hence it is a language that is very important for you to understand WP.

It was initially created, but the focus was on making the creation of static HTML sites / pages easy. It will send out results of the operations onto static HTML pages that a server then outputs to the WordPress site visitors; it all happens by default.

The structure of PHP and logic for WP themes is essential. There is a couple of things that are very important that we feel you must know;

  • HTML is controlled by PHP logic within it. Hence HTML within the initial PHP conditional statement will display on a page; however, the HTML within the second statement will not.
  • In a PHP block, you can utilize the echo command in order to print certain things.
  • You must also understand that things that are not within PHP tags are simply HTML. So when a server processes PHP file, it will display these things to a visitor, just the way it will with all static HTML page that is regular.
  • PHP also has certain variables that begin with $. Math can be done with it, similar to algebra. So we begin to set these variables to four and add one to it in order to increase it to five. This will be saved as $math.

Programming of Web Browsers – JavaScript 

JavaScript was created in order to program the behaviour of a static HTML page after they have been displayed on a visitor’s browser.

For instance, you happen to select something, and as you do so, it simply disappears, slides and turns into a larger thing, changes the colour; all this is the work of JavaScript.

WP themes can operate perfectly without utilizing JavaScript. 

However, with many websites, we notice an increase of JavaScript within the WP themes as well as within the WordPress core too. Why is this so?

Because for the fact that JavaScript allows quicker interactions as well as gives the user a feeling that the webpage is truly working and responding extremely well for the visitor.

Currently, if you are beginning to learn more about WP, then we suggest that you must try and learn more about the three languages.

CSS and HTML are definitely mandatory and will form your foundation. PHP is where a lot of intellectual and interesting weights are lifted.

We suggest all our readers to begin to read and get a good understanding of the other languages as well.

Instant Website – Simply Add Your Content 

WP, at the core, is actually a blog post or blogging software. But it is frequently utilized to build websites that are functional for business and personal use.

WP is extremely straightforward, and you can easily create sites by utilizing their premium themes templates that are ready to be used. They can also be modified if you install WordPress plugins and widgets that you would find easily.

A user with absolutely no programming knowledge can now build a WordPress site with much ease simply by utilizing the free WordPress editor, widgets, plugins and themes.

They can add plenty of content to their site. But I must point out that if you have a certain amount of programming skills, they will definitely be useful.

Creating a Good WordPress Site 

I would like to say that there are definitely two reasons that you should learn the languages of programming for websites, they are; you will be able to modify the website content and site’s  appearance, and you will be very efficient when it comes to troubleshooting any and all problems.

When we talk about modifying a WordPress site, I must say it is as easy as changing font sizes or colours in the theme, or it could be as huge as building an entire WP theme right from scratch.

Now while troubleshooting, if you know more about the programming language, it will make it very easy to determine where and why an issue has occurred.

And as I mentioned earlier, the easiest programming language that you could consider to begin learning is HTML.

JavaScript – Adding Flexibility 

This is yet another coding language that is utilized for web apps. JavaScript has definitely experienced an increase in popularity ever since the launch of the latest HTML5.

Plenty of its power is in their very popular libraries that are easily available. These libraries help in improving the functions of JavaScript, for instance, jQuery.

Frequently JavaScript is utilized to offer visual effects to websites such as slideshow or image carousels. The new version of CSS can conduct image transitions; however, with older browsers, it may not be compatible; therefore, JavaScript is preferred.

Various visual effects in WordPress widgets, WordPress plugins and themes are created by utilizing JavaScript.

PHP – Making WP Dynamic 

PHP is the backbone for WP. It’s the server-side language that we never see when we are viewing web page source code, and that is definitely not the case with JavaScript, HTML and CSS. When the browser requests a page through HTTPS or HTTP, it is sent to the webserver.

Suppose the page that is requested has PHP code; the server performs the action that is needed by PHP prior to sending the page to a browser. Therefore it’s called ‘server-side’ language. 

WordPress sites are made dynamic with the help of PHP. For instance, instead of writing a code for the site header and all web pages for a WordPress site, this head of the board is kept in a file and ‘called’ on every page by utilizing the WP PHP function that is built-in, ‘get_header’.

By doing so, there are small sizes of files and fewer repetitions of code for a coder for a website. The only disadvantage is WP has a PHP language of its own that requires to be studied apart from the standard PHP.

Management of WordPress Websites Utilizing HTML 

We have discussed this earlier; it’s not necessary for you to learn HTML in order to build a WordPress site; however, it will do you no harm if you do happen to know it.

Having technical knowledge of basic HTML can offer the owner of a website with valuable technical skills in terms of troubleshooting as well as increase their confidence in modifying WordPress themes.

With the correct modifications, you can enhance user experience, functionality as well as appearance.

Final Thoughts 

Today’s world is completely controlled by the internet, and learning to code HTML is definitely a valuable investment to make.

HTML is an amazing language, and learning more about it will be helping you as a web developer. You can also check our article on How to Change a Domain Name of an Existing Website?

HTML, along with CSS as well as JavaScript, is among the primary building blocks of many modern websites.

Therefore if you look around, you will see a huge fraternity of developers that know a lot of coding in HTML. You will also find plenty of guides to help you learn all about the basics. 

Initially, it would be best if you focus on learning basic tags, syntax, structure, etc. Once you’re thorough with this, you can then move onto learning more about forms, tables as well as connecting CSS and HTML along with various technical topics.

I’m sure most of you have heard it before that practising does perfect your skills; therefore, whenever you plan to learn to code, you must practice enough.

There would be times when you would look for excuses in order to stop doing what you’re doing; however, if you push through, you will accomplish what you began. 

I also understand that there would be times when things may seem to get frustrating, but it’s all a part of learning, and believe me, we have all experienced this some time or the other.

So just stay strong and push through, and trust me, by the end of it all, you will refine all your skills and stay on top of it all. 

There are various ways that you could follow in order to practice and refine all your skills; they include online tutorials, doing a course, working on a project.

Now you can also go to sites like freeCodeCamp and Codecademy; they would help you with your coding skills. 

That’s all for now, folks, and we do hope that this article has been helpful to you. Thanks, and take care.

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