A few years back I posted a Microsoft Word style-guide for content that is to be copied and pasted into WordPress websites. Copying and pasting from Word to a WordPress page or post is still very common therefore I thought I should update the guide.
Why do I need to style content correctly in Microsoft Word?
Microsoft Word was around before the mainstream use of HTML and Word saves documents in its own format which is not the same as HTML. One cannot simply paste Word content into a web page as the styling of the content will be all over the place when viewed in an Internet Browser.
WordPress however has a great feature where Word content can be pasted directly into a page or post using the page/post editor. In the background some code runs that converts the Word format into HTML. In order for the editor to convert Word content correctly it’s important that certain best-practices are adhered to when creating content in Microsoft Word that will be pasted into WordPress.
How to style Word content for pasting into WordPress
There are just a few simple guidelines that will make pasting content into WordPress so much simpler (i.e. rework won’t be needed).
- Use Microsoft Word Styles (the following are likely the only styles you’ll need to use):
- For paragraph text select the Word Normal style.
- For page or post titles use Heading 1 style.
- For sub-headings use Heading 2 style (If you need to use a third heading level then use the Heading 3 style).
- For bold text select your text in your Word document and click the icon.
- For italics select your text in your Word document and click the icon.
- Add hyperlinks to URLs as required in your Word document.
Here are some important notes:
- Use single line breaks in Microsoft Word to start a new paragraph (don’t press ENTER on your keyboard twice).
- Images cannot be pasted from Word into WordPress. Drag and drop your images separately to where you want them in WordPress.
- Don’t use the text colour and size options in Word. Just use the Normal style in Microsoft Word and change the font-size in WordPress if needed.
- For Headings and Titles use the Microsoft Word styles; don’t make text bold and a larger font size as this won’t be recognized as a heading or title in HTML.
- Use numbered lists and bullet-lists in Word to signify lists.
And here is a very quick SEO tip for image names; before importing images into WordPress, name the images something meaningful. For example, if your camera names a photo of a Liquid Amber tree something obscure like D639876.jpg then rename the image like Liquid Amber Tree.jpg.