All the resources you need to learn web development can be found online for free. There are plenty of premium courses, but there are also many free tutorials and guides that can teach you everything, from the basics of HTML/CSS to PHP, or even Node development.
In this post, I want to share the top 15 sites and blogs offering the best web dev tutorials. If you pick some tutorials from these sites and put in the time to practice, you’ll be surprised how much you can learn just from free content.
Sites for Free Web Development Tutorials
The first site on my list is TutsPlus Code, if only for its massive tutorial library. This blog is literally dedicated to tutorials, and it’s one of the few brands that offers consistent, high-quality writing. All their tutorials are super detailed and really aim to dig deep into the subject matter.
Another detailed blog I really respect is Scotch. They have an entire tutorials category, full of complex web development tutorials.
By following the Scotch tuts, you can rise from a mediocre developer to a surprisingly competent one. Their tuts mostly target intermediate-level developers, so these posts aren’t ideal for early beginners.
But if you really want to improve, you’ll need to try more complicated material. And with a price tag of free, you won’t find many alternatives.
3. Smashing Magazine
Everyone’s favorite web design magazine also covers a lot of coding tutorials related to frontend development and PHP/WordPress projects.
The Smashing Magazine coding section is full of updated content, with new posts added each month. Most tutorials focus on a single library or concept, like learning Babylon.js or creating a Node.js chat bot.
Smashing’s editorial process is strict, so you know every single tutorial is detailed enough to teach the subject well.
I’m hesitant to include this site on the list, because so many developers hate the simplicity of the content. But honestly, W3Schools is the best place for beginners to learn for free.
Over the past few years, CSS-Tricks has seen a meteoric rise. Their content is fresh, unique, and incredibly valuable, covering advanced CSS hacks for modern web development.
But if you go beyond the basics, you’ll find plenty of tutorials posted to the CSS Tricks blog. These are somewhat sparse yet always very detailed.
6. Auth0 Blog
WordPress is the largest CMS on the planet, and it grows larger every year. That’s why sites like WP Beginner are so valuable—because they’re essentially huge treasure troves full of tutorials and handy resources.
If you need to learn how to do anything with WordPress, I guarantee this site has you covered. You can learn basic features, like creating shortcodes, or you can even get into nuanced topics, like custom admin notices, in the admin panel.
If you want to learn anything about WordPress development, then WP Beginner is the only site you’ll need.
Instead of building on a CMS, some developers prefer to use custom frameworks like Laravel. This runs on PHP and makes it easy for developers to create PHP-powered applications from scratch.
And with a platform like Laracasts, you can study Laravel from the very beginning. This is actually a premium service, but it offers many free lessons within the library. So you can get started with Laravel for free, then put down money if you want to go further with the screencasts.
Or you can rely on text-based tutorials like TutsPlus for Laravel tutorials.
9. HTML5 Doctor
Here’s another resource site that also offers a decent amount of tutorials. If you’re new to HTML, then HTML5 Doctor can be a great place to start.
The site offers a full index of all the major HTML elements, with optional attributes and how they work together. But you can browse their collection of articles to see what’s offered and what you can study.
I put this in line with W3Schools, because they both target beginners; once you get through the lessons, you’ll need to find more challenging resources.
For well over a decade, the folks at SitePoint have published incredible content for all areas of web design and development. Nowadays they’re still pumping out content, but it’s often in higher volume and covering a much broader range of topics.
Publishing guidelines are also fairly strict on SitePoint, so this is definitely one of the better sites you can use to your advantage.
11. Tutorials Point
Here’s another blog with a very similar name but a different content strategy. Tutorials Point is a free community full of tutorials for all IT/tech topics.
Naturally, this includes a lot of web programming, like Node and PHP. But you can also learn about databases, Java apps, and all the latest JS frameworks. Check out the web development category to see what topics they cover.
Every December, the 24ways team publishes an advent calendar of articles. This covers 24 articles leading up to Christmas, and these articles are written by thought leaders in all areas of UI/UX design and web development.
Over the years, they’ve published hundreds of posts and thankfully, they’re organized quite well. Try browsing through the code category to find web dev tutorials on every topic you could imagine. You’ll learn technical skills for proper CSS naming, along with guided lessons on subjects like Git management.
14. Shay Howe
But with these tutorials, you can go from a complete newbie to a fairly adept web developer. These lessons won’t teach you everything about frameworks, but they will teach you the fundamentals of writing frontend code.
Shay’s writing style is super easy to read, and I highly recommend his tutorials for complete beginners who just need a place to start.
I know this seems like a cop-out for the last item in this post, but Google really is your best friend. So many developers run their own blogs and sporadically publish awesome tutorials for free.
But these blogs aren’t seen as major hubs for new content, so even if one blog publishes 2-3 awesome tutorials, you’ll never find them unless you search for them. If you need to learn something very specific, hit Google with your keywords and see what comes up.
When in doubt, trust that Google can help you find stuff hidden in the deeper recesses of the Internet.
All of these sites are incredible, and I guarantee you can become a talented web developer just from these free tutorials (and lots of practice).