The Ultimate guide to converting Word to HTML

In this guide, we will explore all the various ways for you to convert Word to HTML.

Using MS Words built-in save as HTML option

If you have MS Word installed you can use the built-in save to HTML option. All you need to is:

  • Go to the file menu
  • Select save as
  • In the drop-down file type box select, web page filtered
  • Click save

How to save a word file as a HTML webpage

Easy eh? Not so fast there are two major issues with using Word to save your HTML, the file sizes are massive and the quality of the HTML is not very good.


Large file sizes when using MS Word to convert Word to HTML

If you create a simple test document like the one shown below then save it to HTML you will see that the resulting web page has 105 lines of code.

Screenshot of an example word document we converting from Word to HTML

If we convert the same file with our Doc Converter Pro tool we get only 29 lines of code, that is less than a third of the size of the Word version. That is less than a third of the size. You can try this experiment yourself or view or test files:

This is a simple document, for complex files the file size difference can be even larger.


Why does it matter if my HTML code is large?

Apart from practical issues like server space web pages with lots of code that longer to download. Google penalises sites with slow download times, and more importantly, users are impatient. According to research nearly half of web users expect a site to load in 2 seconds or less, and they tend to abandon a site that isn’t loaded within 3 seconds.  In the modern internet speed is the most important factor.


Word generates messy non-standard HTML when converting from Word to HTML

The other big issue with using Word is it creates overly complex non-standard HTML. Now to be fair to Microsoft I imagine that main reason they do this is to try to keep the layout of your files as similar as possible but it does create issues. In our example file if we look how Word handles the list items, this is the code it generates:

<p class=MsoListParagraphCxSpFirst style=’text-indent:-18.0pt’><span
style=’font-family:Symbol’>�<span style=’font:7.0pt “Times New Roman”‘>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;


A lot of code just to the display the word apple on a list. You will also notice that Word does not use the standard HTML Li and ul list tags. It uses CSS to format the lists, if you strip out this CSS the list becomes normal text. In comparison, this is the code generated with our Doc Converter Pro tool.

<li style=”margin-left:28.06pt; line-height:108%; padding-left:7.94pt; font-family:serif; font-size:11pt”>
<span style=”font-family:Calibri”>Apples</span>

And if you tick the option in Doc Converter Pro to remove formatting you will be left with this very clean code:


So you can see if you want the cleanest HTML possible you need to use a tool like Doc Converter Pro to convert your Word files to HTML.


What is the best way to convert Word to HTML?

It all depends on your needs. Here are our recommendations based on who you are:


I am a casual user who only needs to convert Word to HTML content occasionally

For casual use, you can use our free online Word to HTML converter tool.


I need a Windows application to convert my word files to HTML

You need to try our free trial of Doc Converter Pro. It is the easy way for you to convert your Word, PDF and other files formats to HTML. You can convert one file or batch convert hundreds of files in one go. It is really easy to use and you can create your own custom templates to give you full control over your conversions. Find out more or Download your free trial for Windows…

Screenshot of Doc Converter Pro - the easy way for you to convert Word to HTML


I need a web app to convert my Word documents to HTML

Our web app version of Doc Converter Pro gives you all the great features of our desktop version but as it is web based you can work from any computer and any browser. You can also share accounts with your team. Check out the free trial of our web app…


I am a programmer who needs an API solution to convert our Word files to HTML

No problem. We have a Web API version of Doc Converter Pro. With a few lines of code, we take all the hard work out of converting your documents. Try our free trial here…


We are here to help…

If you need more advice feel free to contact us anytime. We also offer a consultancy service where we can advise you on the best strategy for your needs.