Now, not only do we have confirmation that Google can read it, but they will warn you if you block them from it.
As an SEO, you don’t have to be an expert HTML and CSS coder with intricate knowledge of every HTML parameter. It is expected that you do know how to read HTML and CSS, can make changes to the code and are able to modify existing blocks of code. Without knowledge of HTML you really can’t understand the most important aspects of HTML such as title tags, meta descriptions and h tags.
Being able to read what is inside of thetag is also vitally important. Within thetag contains some of the most essential elements within on-page SEO, and should not be ignored. Knowledge of HTML and CSS also enables you to understand how to implement structured data, anchor text, images and so much more.
The role that CSS plays in SEO is very important. Not only does CSS make webpages much prettier, they make them much lighter in weight as well.
HTML / CSS Validation (w3.org)
Just like your content or text needs to be checked for grammar and spelling, your code needs to be checked for validity as well. W3.org is an international community where Member organizations, a full-time staff, and the public work together to develop Web standards. Basically, they are the people in charge of ensuring HTML is standardized. They’ve created a tool to validate the HTML and CSS on your website. We’ve found that almost every website “fails” on some level or another.
That is not to say you shouldn’t fix these issues. If you’ve ever run an “SEO testing tool” this is one of the main factors that they look for. While it has been stated in the past that Google does not give preference to websites that have validated HTML, that is not to say they don’t look down upon websites with tons of errors. For example invalid HTML could mean broken HTML elements which could mean improper formatting on your website. Poor formatting on your website could cause issues with your users which of course could lead to SEO’s.
In short, we would advise you to make sure all major issues are fixed, and if you have time fix the minor issues but don’t spend all your time focusing on HTML compliance. While CSS and HTML might not be a direct ranking factor, having properly optimized HTML tags
Google has made it really simple to understand by saying:
“What the user sees, the crawler sees.”
This is a major step forward within the SEO industry and a huge accomplishment for Google.
This is yet another reason why learning SEO is a dynamic process and something that you need to remain up to date on if you want to become an expert within the field.