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Converting Word documents to clean HTML

Converting Word documents to clean HTML

Get rid of unnecessary code in your Word documents with this handy HTML editor.

If you convert a Word 2010 doc into an HTML web page by using ‘Save as > Web Page’, the resulting file will be filled with a lot of extraneous Word-specific code. It can be time consuming to strip this out to leave clean HTML code.

It’s easy enough to do with a graphical editor such as Adobe Dreamweaver, but not everyone will have a copy of this powerful (and expensive) software.

Fortunately, there’s a free alternative in the form of an online HTML Editor (best viewed in Internet Explorer). It’s easy to use and automatically strips out Word-generated code. Here’s how:

Prepare the Word file

  • Tidy up: you’ll get a better result if you first go through the Word doc and remove things like double paragraph returns and soft returns, which end up as empty

    and tags in the final HTML.

  • Use heading styles: Word’s default heading styles (1 to 6) will convert nicely into HTML heading tags.
  • Bullet and numbered lists: make sure these are formatted as actual lists, either with list styles or the bullet and numbering buttons in the Word menu. Lists created with manually-entered bullet symbols and numbers will not convert into correct HTML <ul> and <ol> lists.

Convert it online

  • Copy the text: select all from Word, copy and paste into the HTML Editor window.
  • View the code: by clicking the blue HTML button in the editor toolbar.

And that’s it! The HTML Source window displays the cleansed HTML code, ready to be used in a web or intranet page.

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