by Ngoc
January 1, 2022

The ultimate guide to edit HTML, CSS, PHP in WordPress

WordPress is a user-friendly platform which you may use without knowing how to code. However, understanding how to alter HTML in WordPress is a useful skill to have. Because if you know how to modify code, you can resolve difficulties or do advanced customization. As a result, you can improve your WordPress site. For that reason, in this post, ArrowTheme will explain how to edit HTML in WordPress as well as CSS, PHP. So now let’s start to explore.

Why should you know how to edit HTML in WordPress as well as CSS, PHP?

WordPress runs flawlessly. As a result, you may create a stunning and functioning website without having to write any code.

In fact, WordPress includes a large number of WordPress themes and plugins Therefore. you may use it to effortlessly customize your website. So, on WordPress, you don’t actually need to know how to edit HTML.

You can use and tailor the pre installed theme or install a new one from the WordPress directory to change the look of your website. Additionally, integrating plugins to add extra functionality to your website could be one of the greatest alternatives.

In most cases, leaving the WordPress source code alone is sufficient.

However, there are situations when editing HTML in WordPress is necessary. Because it is the only option. For example, in case you want to customize your theme more or add HTML effects to your posts, such as appealing highlighted text.

Keep in mind that poorly altering WordPress code can cause more harm than benefit. So do it with caution.

Before coming to edit HTML in WordPress as well as CSS, PHP

The task of editing the WordPress source code is difficult. When at all possible, you should reduce the risk. To do so, think about what you want to do, what tools you’ll need, and how much time you have.

Consider this: what is your motivation? Do you want to make changes for the advanced customization?

Creating a WordPress child theme is highly suggested if you want to try things out. Your website will not be harmed if something goes wrong.

You can also use specific WordPress functions to learn more about them. Keep in mind that you should limit your  parts which you want to know. It will not only save you time. Moreover, it also keep you from getting into trouble.

You’ll need a text HTML editor like Notepad++ for Windows or Textwrangler for Mac to edit the WordPress source code. Besides that, you will need an FTP client, such as FileZilla, and a modern browser, such as Google Chrome.

The final but most crucial step is to determine how much time you want to devote to the activity. In most cases, coming to edit HTML in WordPress source code takes a long time. So, if you don’t think you’ll have time to do it yourself, hiring a professional might be a good idea.

Editing source code in WordPress

WordPress has four different programming languages: HTML, CSS, PHP, and JavaScript.

Each language has its own set of rules and performs different tasks. HTML, for example, is in charge of content structure. Whereas CSS is in charge of appearance. However, you may need to use a specific set of code to conduct certain activities.

So let’s look at how to edit the WordPress source code in more detail now.

How to edit HTML in WordPress

How to edit WordPress HTML in Block Editor (Gutenberg)

In Gutenberg, there are a number of different ways to work with HTML.

Firstly, in case you only want to add your own HTML code to a part of content,. So you should not edit the complete source code of your post. Because this would only muddle things more.

Furthermore, you may use the dedicated Custom HTML block. Therefore, you can paste the HTML you want to use:

However, sometimes you may need to alter the HTML of a different block directly. For example, to add a nofollow tag to a link in the block editor, you have to alter the HTML of that block.

There are two ways to accomplish this…

Firstly, select the Edit as HTML option from the options for each individual block:

This will allow you to edit the HTML for that specific block:

You can also use the Code Editor from the main Tools & Options dropdown in case you need to edit the HTML for your entire article. Besides that, you may also use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + Shift + Alt + M to switch between code and visual editing.

Moreover, you’ll have to work around all of that markup for blocks in the complete code editor. For example: <!– wp:paragraph –>.

How to Edit WordPress HTML in Classic Editor (TinyMCE)

In case you’re still using the Classic WordPress editor (TinyMCE). So you should go to the Text tab to edit HTML for your entire post:

How to edit PHP and CSS in WordPress

CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) is a style sheet that is applied to HTML. It is in charge of deciding how the web page is displayed.

Your website will have a certain layout, color, and fonts if you use a WordPress theme. In case you don’t like that theme, you can switch to another.

But what in case you want to preserve the layout of the theme but change the font? Then you may need to make changes to the PHP and CSS files in WordPress.

Please note that this strategy may not be ideal for WordPress novices.

Using the WordPress code editor or an FTP client are the two options for editing PHP and CSS in WordPress.

The WordPress code editor

can use this method in case your website is running without any crashing due to malware or failed upgrades.

Activate your child theme once it’s been generated. Then select Appearance > Editor.

Make sure you’ve chosen the correct child theme to update. For example, if you want to change the footer, go to the right side and choose footer.php. Then, in the Code Editor, you may add or update the code.

Click the Update File button after you’ve finished altering the code.

FTP Client

The following method makes use of an FTP client.

While this is an effective strategy, we do not recommend it. It’s risky, and mishandling it could put your website at risk. But, if you feel qualified and confident in your abilities, here’s how it’s done.

You must first generate an FTP credential login. Then, in your FTP client, type in the data of your FTP host, username, and password.

You’ll have access to the WordPress source code after you’ve connected. So you can  click any files you want to edit and select Edit. Finally, you can save your changes after you’ve finished editing.

How to use SFTP to edit code in WordPress

You can edit theme files over SFTP instead of using the in-dashboard code editor. There are two advantages to this strategy:

  • You can use whatever coding editor you choose.
  • If you break something by accident, you can quickly rectify the problem. However, if you edit code through your WordPress dashboard, there’s always the risk of breaking something which locks you out. Therefore, it requires you to connect via SFTP to solve the problem. Thanks to recent revisions, this is becoming less probable).

Here’s how to use FTP to connect to your website.

After that, go to…/wp-content/themes/child-theme-name to find your theme’s folder. Right-click on the file you want to modify and select properties. Most FTP tools will allow you to edit the file. Moreover, it will automatically re-upload it once you’ve finished editing it.

However, before making any modifications, ArrowTheme strongly advise you to save an original version of the file to your desktop. Therefore, if you mistakenly break something, you can simply re-upload the original version:

How to add custom CSS to WordPress?

You don’t need to utilize the in-dashboard code editor or SFTP techniques in case you just want to add custom CSS to WordPress rather than change the HTML or PHP code.

Therefore, you can use the WordPress Customizer instead. This strategy allows you to preview your changes in real time, in addition to being a simpler choice.

Go to Appearance > Customize in your WordPress dashboard to get started:

Then, in the WordPress Customizer, find out the Additional CSS option:

It will show a code editor for you to enter your CSS. As you make changes to CSS, the live preview of your site will refresh instantly to reflect those changes:

Tom Usborne’s Simple CSS plugin is another nice alternative for adding CSS. It has a comparable option in the WordPress Customizer. It also has a meta box. Therefore, you can add custom CSS to individual articles or pages.

Finally, in case you need a lot of custom CSS like hundreds or thousands of lines. So you can write your own custom CSS stylesheet and upload it to your theme using wp enqueue scripts.


Therefore, in case you don’t have much time, ArrowTheme by AHT TECH JSC are ready to help you. Leave your information into this CONTACT FORM. And then our dedicated experts will help you solve all your issues with your website. More specially, with our WordPress Website Packages which include 2 options: Standard and Advance, you will own a full solution for Ecommerce Website. Our Advance package is higher-level versions of the Standard package. You just need to choose 1 of 2 mentioned packages and then our dedicated experts will help you do the rest of the building Ecommerce Website Process. Are you interested in it? So make sure that you should not miss them.

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