CSS IDs and Classes: Why to Use?

Cascading Style Sheets which is better known as CSS needs a lot of commands to bring in variation in the look and feel of websites. ID and Class are the two vital CSS commands. Classes can be used to define font style, size, color and types. Class is set for identification and reference. There can be numerous classes added along with different code words.  ID command in CSS works similar to the Class command. The main aim is to include the CSS models into DHTML or JavaScript. The best part about Ids and Classes is that they can let you move your style anywhere in the website you want them to be moved to. CSS Classes and IDs bring in improvements and enhancements such as backgrounds changes, paragraph setting changes and content placement shifts.

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css classes and ids

If you want to create a style which can be applied on numerous tags in a document without having to repeat the style then Ids and Classes are the things that will be required.


When classes are selected multiple styles can be added to the same element and tags used in articles. If you need to want your text to have different set of colours for a specific section leaving out the rest of the text then all you need to do is assign the paragraphs with the particular classes for which command will be like:

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<style type=”text/css”>

p.blue { background-color: #0000ff; }

p.red { background-color: #ff0000; }


In order to call the classes you need to apply the class attribute in the paragraph (<p></p>) tag. Tags not having a class attribute would have a style. A simple command needs to be used to generate a class for a tag:

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This paragraph would have a blue background.



In order to place the paragraph back to its normal style:

</p> <p>

And this paragraph would have a red background color.


HTML must be removed from the starting point of the style call in order to apply a class attribute for multiple HTML elements. The CSS command for this would be:

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<style type=”text/css”>

.blue {background-color: #0000ff;}

.red {background-color: #ff0000;}



IDs will let you have a name for a style without having to associate it with a tag or any other HTML element. IDs add uniqueness. The simple way to add an ID command is:

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<style type=”text/css”>

#indent1 { text-indent: 10px; }


Numbers and letters can be provided as ID tags for groups. ID tags must be added with names as it helps one to remember categories and groups. ID Tags must always be unique as it helps to maintain HTML standards. While handling ID it is important to be specific in order to curb errors while defining styles in items.

Difference between Class and ID

In CSS there are three ways in which elements can be styled. Each of these ways has specific purposes. They can also be clubbed together in order to bring out the best function in CSS.

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ID and Classes work on different platforms. ID gives uniqueness and class adds attributes to items. An ID can be used only once in every HTML document. ID acts like an identification. Whenever a need to add something different in a webpage arises, ID comes into action. Setting up an ID saves a lot of energy in adding distinctiveness to a website and individual web pages as a whole.

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Need for a Class arises when an attribute needs to be added to multiple elements used on one page. Going by CSS norms, there will be one introduction for every web page and but there will be multiple dimension set for website elements.

An ID is for one time use in a web page but a class can be used multiple times. Unique elements can be created using various codes in order to bring out the right flavour of Cascading style sheets.  ID and Classes can be applied intelligently in order to add uniqueness.

Some common code examples of CSS ID –

p#exampleID1 { background-color: white; }

p#exampleID2 { text-transform: uppercase; }

The crux of it all is to add identification (a unique element) with the help of an ID and to add attribute to many people residing within a class.

Nick Grogan is working with Markupbox, which is a specialized PSD to HTML Conversion Company, backed with years of experience and diligent professionals. MarkupBox offers PSD to CSS/HTML, PSD to HTML5 and software implementation services like PSD to Joomla, PSD to Magento, PSD to WordPress, PSD to Drupal and much more.