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Before settling for Material for MkDocs, it's a good idea to understand the philosophy behind the project, in order to make sure it aligns with your goals. This page explains the design principles anchored in Material for MkDocs, and discusses the conventions used in this documentation.

Design principles

  • It's just Markdown: Focus on the content of your documentation and create a professional static site in minutes. No need to know HTML,CSS or JavaScript – let Material for MkDocs do the heavy lifting for you.

  • Works on all devices: Serve your documentation with confidence – the underlying layout automatically adapts to perfectly fit the available screen estate, no matter the type or size of the viewing device.

  • Made to measure: Change the colors, fonts, language, icons, logo and much more with a few lines of configuration. Material for MkDocs can be easily extended and provides tons of options to alter appearance and behavior.

  • Fast and lightweight: Don't let your users wait – get incredible value with a small footprint, by using one of the fastest themes around with excellent performance, yielding great search engine rankings and happy users that return.

  • Accessible: Make accessibility a priority – users can navigate your documentation with touch devices, keyboard, and screen readers. Semantic markup ensures that your documentation works for everyone.

  • Open Source: Trust 20,000+ users – choose a mature and well-funded solution built with state-of-the-art Open Source technologies. Keep ownership of your content without fear of vendor lock-in. Licensed under MIT.



This documentation use some symbols for illustration purposes. Before you read on, please make sure you've made yourself familiar with the following list of conventions:


Some features are not yet available in the community edition, but only as part of the Insiders build of Material for MkDocs. Please consult the Insiders guide to learn how to get access.


The tag icon in conjunction with a version number denotes when a specific feature or behavior was added. Make sure you're at least on this version if you want to use it.


The source file icon together with a file name is sometimes used in code examples which span multiple files. The file name (or path) always starts from the location of mkdocs.yml.

  Default: value

Some properties in mkdocs.yml have default values for when the author does not explicitly define them. The default value of the property is always included.

  Feature flag

Most of the features are hidden behind feature flags, which means they must be explicitly enabled via mkdocs.yml. This allows for the existence of potentially orthogonal features.


Some newer features are still considered experimental, which means they might (although rarely) change at any time, including their complete removal (which hasn't happened yet).


Several features are implemented through MkDocs excellent plugin architecture, some of which are built-in and distributed with Material for MkDocs, so no installation is required.


Besides plugins, there are some utilities that build on top of MkDocs in order to provide extended functionality, like for example support for versioning.