How to Highlight Text on Web Pages

By Tricia Goss

Highlighting text on a Web page to copy it or simply draw attention to it while viewing the site is easy; click on the first or last word in the specific text and drag your mouse over the section. If you want to mark text on Web pages for later research or to share, you can use a browser add-on, a bookmarklet or a desktop application. Determining the features you want will help you select the tool that best suits your needs.

Diigo

Pronounced "Dee'go," Diigo stands for Digest of Internet Information, Groups and Other Stuff. The tool provides four bookmarklets that you can drag and drop onto the toolbar of any browser without downloading anything. The Diigolet enables you to bookmark, highlight in one of four colors, add virtual sticky notes and share text from any Web page you visit. The Diigo toolbar is described as a power tool, which opens as a sidebar enabling you to highlight text, share in multiple ways, mark as unread and more. The toolbar is compatible with Internet Explorer and Firefox.

Marker.to

The type of Marker.to tool you can add depends on the Web browser you use. There is a bookmarklet for Internet Explorer and a browser extension for Google Chrome and Firefox. To use the tool, you click on an icon to highlight text in yellow on a page. You can also annotate, bookmark the page using social bookmarking tools and share the highlighted version of the page with a special link. In addition, you can opt for a paid premium account to avoid viewing ads.

Scrible

In beta as of summer 2014, Scrible offers two bookmarklets for Firefox and Chrome. The toolbar bookmarklet opens the complete toolbar, from which you can choose from to highlight, create sticky notes, add notes and underline text in more than 30 colors. In addition, you can share highlighted pages with others directly from the toolbar or bookmark them for yourself. There is a browser extension available for Chrome, as well, which offers the same functionality.

Choosing the Best Tool

You must consider several factors when deciding which highlighting tool to use. First, if you prefer a specific browser, you need a tool that is compatible with it. Next, you should take ease of use into account; if you simply want to click a button on your toolbar and start highlighting, you may not want a full sidebar that opens. In addition, think about other features you desire, if any. Perhaps you love the idea of sticky notes and underlining text, but maybe you only want a yellow highlighting pen. When you know what you need, compare it to the offerings to make an informed decision.