calender December 24

Valid HTML – Why go for it if Google, W3C, HP, etc don’t validate


The trend of using valid HTML and CSS for websites is catching up, especially with the emergence of specialized PSD to HTML service providers. While valid HTML is a mark of certain degree of respect for code, the fact that your site is not validated doesn’t really mean the end of the world. If your site doesn’t validate, you are in the company of several renowned companies like Google, Yahoo, and W3C’s validator site itself.

It is a well known fact that Google’s website doesn’t validate. In fact, there is an online petition to encourage Google to validate. The primary reason Google doesn’t validate is that it wants to save precious bytes. It is expected that making the site valid HTML would increase the page size by around 10% which is a fair argument for not validating.

W3C, the World Wide Web Consortium, is a well respected body for setting standards for HTML. Its HTML validation service and CSS validation service are used by coders around the world. W3C’s donation page, doesn’t validate, due to an error. Nor does the homepage of one of its sponsors – HP.

Here is the list of PR10 pages and their validation summary

Site Name HTML Validation
Google Search 97 errors
World Wide Web Consortium Home Validated successfully
W3C CSS Validation Service Validated successfully
US Government’s Official Web Portal 23 errors
Adobe – Adobe Flash Player 19 errors
Adobe – Adobe Reader Download 21 errors
National Portal of India Validated successfully
United States Department of Health and Human Services 12 errors
U.S Government recovery board 102 errors
Chinese Government Website 75 errors
The European Library 57 errors
Europeana 85 errors
CNN 48 errors

So given that these web majors don’t validate, should you validate your site?

The answer is yes. Having a valid site that doesn’t show properly in your visitors’ browsers is useless, however having a valid site that renders well in all browsers is great.

Validation is a concept of doing things right, that are future proof. They say “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. Consider this -

Google Chrome came out of nowhere and capture 5% of the market share in just a year. Various websites that worked well in IE, Firefox and Safari still don’t show up properly in Chrome. A standard compliant website is far more likely to render well in Chrome. A standards complaint site can be useful from the perspective of making your code future proof and easier to render on new browsers on the web and on mobiles.

To ensure that your new site is standards complaint, get your PSD to HTML conversion done from us.

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