What Does HTML Tag Mean?

An HTML tag is commonly defined as a set of characters constituting a formatted command for a Web page. At the core of HTML, tags provide the directions or recipes for the visual content that one sees on the Web.


Techopedia Explains HTML Tag

HTML tags have always been important in the history of Web design. During the early days of the World Wide Web, they were responsible for a majority of Web code. That may not be the case anymore, but HTML tags are still at the center of how Web pages are formatted. Other kinds of languages have been built around the backbone of HTML, such as Cascading Style Sheets (CSS), which makes it easier to create consistent and overarching styles and color schemes.

HTML tags include tags for references, tags for tables, tags for headlines or titles, etc. An HTML tag consists of the tag name in angular brackets and may come in pair, which makes up the beginning and ending tag that frame a particular piece of code, text or other tags. The beginning tag consists of the name, optionally followed by one or more attributes, whereas the ending tag consists of the same name preceded by a forward slash (“/”). For example, the HTML tag “<p>” begins a paragraph, whereas “</p>” ends that paragraph. This is a consistent syntax in HTML.


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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.